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Rediff.com  » Sports » Anand wins all sections at Amber

Anand wins all sections at Amber

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April 01, 2005 11:32 IST

Viswanathan Anand completed the formalities of winning his fourth Amber chess title after two easy and quick draws with Israeli Grandmaster Boris Gelfand in the 11th and final round of the game in Monaco.

History repeated itself in the 14th edition of the traditional tournament at Monte Carlo Grand as Anand encored his 1997 triumph winning all the three titles 'rapid, blindfold and combined' at stake.

Incidentally the Indian is the only player to have achieved this feat.

Anand recorded an overall tally of 15.5 points, which in the end proved 2.5 points more than Alexander Morozevich, who continued to excel in Amber by finishing clear second in combined standings.

The third place was jointly shared by Vassily Ivanchuk of Ukraine and Peter Leko of Hungary who both scored 12 points apiece while classical champion Vladimir Kramnik of Russia had to be content with sole fifth place in the combined standings with his 11.5 points. Kramnik was a joint winner here in the last edition along with Morozevich.

The Indian ace had won the blindfold section a round to spare and in fact stamped his authority on it with a huge two points margin tallying 8 points out of a possible 11.

It may be recalled here that in the previous edition Anand was a clear winner in the rapid section but in the blindfold his form was wanting. And not without reasons the amendments made by the Speedy Gonzales, as he fondly called, was there for everyone to see.

Anand surprisingly had a close call in the rapid section in which he finished just a half point ahead of Morozevich who scored 7 points.

The second place in the blindfold was shared by as many as five players who all scored an identical 6 points. They were Morozevich, Ivanchuk, Leko, Veselin Topalov of Bulgaria and Francisco Pons Vallejo of Spain.

In the rapid the third place went to Spaniard Alexei Shirov who was probably let down by his form in the blindfold section as he could only manage a shared 6th place in the combined standings.

Like in the penultimate round, Anand had very little to do in his last outing here this year as Gelfand was also not in his best combative self.

Playing white in the first game Anand played the Queen's Indian defence and secured a balanced position in quick time to get the half point in just 19 moves.

Anand's rapid encounter with Gelfand later in the day lasted one move less in the Petroff defence that Gelfand has recently included in his repertoire. Obviously, and rightly so, winning the event on all three counts was paramount on the mind of the Indian champion.

Incidentally, the event is not counted as a rated event as per FIDE, the World chess federations, regulations that takes into account only the games played under normal time control. Had the ratings of these events been calculated, Anand would have gained a whopping 28 points that would ha ve taken him way past the 2800 mark, something that the tiger from madras is aspiring for a long time.

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