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Anand is world rapid chess champion
October 31, 2003 13:43 IST
Last Updated: October 31, 2003 15:13 IST
Viswanathan Anand lived up to his reputation of being the best in rapid chess and toppled top seed Vladimir Kramnik of Russia 1.5-0.5 to win the World Rapid Chess Championship, which concluded in Cap d'Agde, France.
In the two-game final, Anand drew the first game and brilliantly outplayed Kramnik in the return game to win the coveted title for the first time. Anand's best was visible in the second game as he crushed the sharp Sicilian Sveshnikov, an opening that had been troubling him for some time.
The victory in the second game came easier than many might have thought. The opening gave Anand a tangible advantage as Kramnik failed to cope with enormous pressure on the queenside.
As Anand threatened to penetrate along the queen file, Kramnik had little choice but to part with his queen for two rooks, generally a good exchange. However with Kramnik's pieces not coordinating at all, Anand's task was quite simple.
With his light square bishop spitting fire over the board, Anand seized control with a routine queen manoeuvre and made some fine moves to pocket the full point in 46 moves.
The 'Tiger from Madras', as he is nicknamed in chess circles, tamed Kramnik for the second time in a rapid chess match after the victory in the Mainz Classics in 2001.
Earlier in the first game of the match, Anand, playing black, surprised Kramnik with his choice of Scheveningen variation in the Sicilian defense and equalised comfortably as the latter chose an old line that did not offer any advantage. The peace was signed in just 19 moves.
Anand has been having a splendid run for over a year now. Earlier this year, he won the Corus Super Grandmaster tournament in The Netherlands, Melody Amber Blindfold and Rapid Chess tournament in Monte Carlo and had beaten the world's best woman player, Judit Polgar of Hungary, in an engrossing eight-game match in the Mainz Chess Classics in Germany.
Game 1: Vladimir Kramnik v/s Vishwanathan Anand
1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 a6 6. Be2 e6 7. a4 Nc6 8. Be3 Be7 9. O-O O-O 10. f4 Qc7 11. Qe1 Bd7 12. Qg3 Rac8 13. Kh1 d5 14. e5 Nxd4 15. Bxd4 Ne4 16. Qe3 Bc5 17. Nxe4 dxe4 18. Rfd1 Bxd4 19. Qxd4 Draw agreed
Game 2: V Anand v/s V Kramnik
1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 e5 6. Ndb5 d6 7. Bg5 a6 8. Na3 b5 9. Bxf6 gxf6 10. Nd5 f5 11. Bd3 Be6 12. c3 Bg7 13. Qh5 O-O 14. O-O f4 15. Rfd1 Rb8 16. Nc2 Qd7 17. h3 a5 18. Na3 b4 19. Nb5 bxc3 20. bxc3 Ne7 21. Ndc7 Rbc8 22. Nxe6 fxe6 23. a4 Kh8 24. Bc2 Rc6 25. Rd2 Nc8 26. Rad1 Qe7 27. Bb3 Rf6 28. c4 Rh6 29. Qf3 Bf8 30. c5 Rxc5 31. Nxd6 Nxd6 32. Rxd6 Qxd6 33. Rxd6 Bxd6 34. Qd3 Rc6 35. Qb5 Rc1+ 36. Kh2 Rf6 37. Qe8+ Bf8 38. Bxe6 f3 39. g4 Rf1 40. Kg3 Rg1+ 41. Kh4 Kg7 42. g5 Rf4+ 43. Kh5 Rg2 44. Bf5 Rxf5 45. exf5 Rxf2 46. Qxe5+ black resigned.