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Monday, February 18, 2013

Viswanathan Anand Wins Grenke Chess Classic 2013

Chess blog for latest chess news and chess trivia (c) Alexandra Kosteniuk, 2013

Hello everyone,

World Chess Champion Viswanathan Anand has won his first classical tournament in almost five years after an enthralling final day’s play in Baden-Baden. It started fast with Anand and Naiditsch blitzing out a rook ending that might have been drawn but ended in the German’s resignation on move 49. That left Caruana needing to beat Fridman to force a play-off, but he missed a gilt-edged chance in what fittingly became the longest game of the tournament.

Final rounds are sometimes dull, but there was every reason to hope for action at the GRENKE Chess Classic. No round had yet finished in three draws, and that was largely due to Arkadij Naiditsch’s seven decisive games in only nine rounds. He had the white pieces against Anand, and the players didn’t disappoint. Anand went for the Sicilian he had a draw worked out, but Anand won the Rook endgame. 

Afterwards Anand reflected on his improved form this year, remarking that his last reasonably successful tournament before 2013 was Wijk aan Zee 2011, where he finished clear second behind Nakamura on +4. “After that basically I went over a cliff and the next five tournaments were pretty awful”. Wijk aan Zee this year also went well until the last round, with the champion commenting, “I was hoping I wouldn’t do a Wang Hao today!”

Anand added later in the press centre: “Since 2011 my big problem had been getting interesting positions where I had chances. This year the new problem has been exploiting those chances – against Fridman here, Hou Yifan in Wijk aan Zee or last year against Nakamura and Adams at the London Chess Classic I’ve been gifting people half points. If it wasn’t for that my results would be much better. Still, it’s a hundred times better to have the second problem! I need to work on my technique.”
A detailed report is available at the official website.
Final standings
1. Anand: 6.5
2. Caruana: 6
3. Meier: 5
4. Adams: 5
5. Naiditsch: 4
6. Fridman: 3.5

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