Anand starts with a win over Kramnik in Amber chess

March 16th, 2008 - 6:03 pm ICT by admin  

Monte Carlo, March 16 (IANS) Viswanathan Anand got off to a great start with a thumping win over arch rival Vladimir Kramnik in the opening round of the 17th Amber Blindfold and Rapid Chess Tournament at the Negresco hotel. Anand scored a superb 1.5-0.5 win with black in rapid clash after drawing the blindfold game Saturday night. There was speculation that the tournament may have witnessed one its most brilliant games on the very first day.

Earlier, there was great laughter as the draw saw Anand very aptly pick No. 1 from a basket of giant Easter eggs. The draw saw the World Champion pick Kramnik, who will challenge him later this year, in the first round.

In the blindfold game, Anand and Vladimir Kramnik played a Petroff with the fashionable 5.Nc3 line with which they started. Kramnik said his opponent chose ‘a rather innocent line.’

On move 23, Anand offered a draw and after a brief thought Kramnik accepted, satisfied with the outcome. As he put it with a smile to the future: “If he wants to refute this line he will have to find something more serious.”

The rapid game was quite an attractive one in which Kramnik lost spectacularly with the white pieces. In a Queen’s Indian that quickly took on the characteristics of a Dutch Defence, both players were building up their forces behind their pawns, waiting for the right moment.

According to Anand, his opponent ‘drifted too long on the queenside’ in this phase and once he got his attack going it soon took on devastating force. The World Champion crowned his attack with the marvellous 42…Qf3!!, which allowed White to take a piece and queen a pawn, but left him defenceless against Black’s mating threat.

Results: Round 1

Blind: Anand drew with Kramnik; Mamedyarov drew with Morozevich; Topalov beat Leko; Gelfand lost to Karjakin; Aronian drew with Van Wely; Carlsen lost to Ivanchuk

Rapid: Kramnik lost to Anand; Morozevich drew with Mamedyarov; Leko drew with Topalov; Karjakin drew with Gelfand; Van Wely lost to Aronian; Ivanchuk drew with Carlsen


1. Anand, Aronian, Ivanchuk, Karjakin, Topalov 1.5 points each

6. Mamedyarov, Morozevich 1 each;

8. Carlsen, Gelfand, Kramnik, Leko, van Wely 0.5 each

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