Anand blunders and loses eighth round at Bilbao chess

September 11th, 2008 - 7:28 pm ICT by IANS  

Bilbao (Spain), Sep 11 (IANS) It was a tragic end for Viswanathan Anand, as he blundered and lost the eighth round against Lev Aronian, which nevertheless was the most spectacular so far in the Bilbao Grand Slam Chess. In the other matches played Wednesday, Veselin Topalov defeated Magnus Carlsen to take back the lead he lost a few days ago, while Vassily Ivanchuk won against Teimour Radjabov despite the fact that he had to play 16 moves in just one minute.

Anand spoilt a perfectly good white game with a terrible blunder immediately after the first time control and lost after a 75-move struggle to survive against Aronian. World champion Anand seemed to have a better ending, but he made a big mistake and lost to Aronian and left immediately without giving the press conference.

Anand was in minor time trouble, but still held an upper hand in the ending. However, the Indian ace made one inaccurate move and one mistake and paid a big penalty as he lost a nice ending.

Because of a minor difference compared to the Classical Scheveningen positions -White’s a-pawn being on a3 instead of a2 - both Radjabov and Ivanchuk invested a lot of time right from the opening. Just when the position started to become complicated, Radjabov was left with about two minutes and Ivanchuk with just one, for sixteen moves!

While the 39-year-old Ukrainian Ivanchuk stayed in control Radjabov made a few mistakes and ended up with a lost position.

Topalov defeated Carlsen’s Sicilian Modern Dragon in 48 moves. The Bulgarian had gone for 1.e4, not afraid of meeting Carlsen’s Dragon, which indeed came on the board. It was the Norwegian who played the theoretical novelty and he continued to play fast, obviously still in his preparation. But Topalov managed to get an advantage anyway, which soon grew into a winning attack.

In the ninth round, Ivanchuk meets Aronian, Radjabov takes on Carlsen and Anand has white pieces against Topalov.

Anand now has two losses and six draws and besides Radjabov he is the only player not to have registered a win so far here. Topalov, Aronian and Carlsen have three wins each.

The Chess Grand Slam Final here is a six-player double round robin event and one of the strongest in the history of the game. The scoring system in this tournament is different and experimental.

Players get three points for a win, one point for a draw and zero points for losing a game. For rating purposes the traditional 1-½-0 system will be used. The prize fund for the event is 400,000 Euros, with the winner receiving 150,000 Euros, the second place 70,000 Euros etc. with the sixth player getting 30,000 Euros.

Results: Ivanchuk beat Radjabov; Anand lost to Aronian; Topalov beat Carlsen

Points: Topalov 13 points; Aronian 12 points; Carlsen and Ivanchuk 11 points each; Anand and Radjabov 6 points each

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