Anand-Carlsen: Game 4, a Berlin Ending, Drawn After 64 Moves

  • PeterDoggers
  • on 11/13/13, 7:52 AM.

The fourth match game in Chennai between Viswanathan Anand, playing white, and Magnus Carlsen ended in a draw after 64 moves. It was an amazing fight that started as a Berlin Ending, in which the World Champion was forced to sacrifice a pawn at an early stage, but he did get some long-term compensation. Still in Chennai, Garry Kasparov liked White's chances until move 31. Just when Carlsen seemed to gain the upper hand, Anand found some excellent moves and eventually he could liquidate to a drawn rook ending.

After yet another great fight between Magnus Carlsen and Vishy Anand in Chennai, the longest game so far, nobody speaks about the two quick draws at the start anymore. The match has begun, the match is there and it's great!

On the fourth day of play, the two matadors showed a very high level of play — perhaps except for Anand's opening phase. In the most complicated positions they often played the move that was also the first stuggestion of the strongest engines.

Carlsen had the advantage for most of the game, but the experts agreed that the reigning champion defended brilliantly. "Something went horribly wrong in the opening," said Anand, who saw his 1.e4 answered by 1...e5, instead of the Caro-Kann like in game 2.

Carlsen played the infamous Berlin Ending, Vladimir Kramnik's tremendous weapon in the year 2000 which he used so successfully against Garry Kasparov. For years this opening did not have a great reputation in terms of providing exciting chess, but recently some very interesting games have been played with it, and the 4th match game in Chennai was no exception.

"I made one illogical move after the next. I missed something with 18.Ne2 and then... I'm just basically lost," said Anand. About losing the a-pawn, the Indian said that he was "already drifting" and he mostly wanted to be consistent. Funnily enough, Kasparov, who spoke with GM Ian Rogers during the game, was one of the few who actually liked the pawn "sacrifice". It was only until 31...g6 when The Boss stopped looking for wins for White! 

Except for the opening, Anand played strong chess. Carlsen: "When I won the pawn I was very optimistic but he kept finding resources. I was missing some little things; he just fought on really well. All credit to him."

Especially 35.Ne4! was a great move by Anand which made full use of all the tactical possibilities. Just before the time control he could liquidate to a rook ending which would have been an easy draw with just one rook for both players, but somehow the World Champion couldn't manage to trade a pair of rooks.

Speaking about this phase, at the press conference it was Anand's turn to compliment his opponent: "Magnus also kept finding resources. I thought I had checked everything and then he finds 56...Re6."

On top of that, Anand got into into time trouble again. "I had a minute left at this point. For Grischuk it was just another day, but for me... it's not every day that I'm down to a minute." But he survived the time trouble again, and the game.

During the game, FIDE Deputy President Georgios Makropoulos gave a press conference about the way Garry Kasparov was received (or rather, not) in Chennai. Whereas on Monday many journalists had learned that Kasparov wasn't welcomed at the airport or in the hotel, and wasn't supposed to give a press conference or join the commentary, FIDE seemed to have changed its position 180 degrees the next day. Makropoulos: "Garry is welcome here and can go wherever he wants."

One journalist confronted Makropoulos with the fact that his colleague at FIDE, Geoffrey Borg, had made sure that Kasparov would not be allowed to join the live commentators, to which "Makro" answered: "I am the only one who can give such instructions."

Meanwhile, Kasparov has left Chennai. Together with his team member Ignatius Leong he will be campaigning in Asia. First stop: Jakarta, Indonesia. Later, an interview with the 13th World Champion will be posted here.

To finish on a lighter note: For the first time Vishy Anand did not play in his trademark blue shirt (with his main sponsor NIIT clearly visible), but in a yellow shirt instead, which had another sponsor logo on it: that of Crocin, a paracetamol (acetaminophen) brand in India. If you hadn't seen the TV ad below yet, here's your chance:

Thursday is the second rest day of the match. The score is 2-2 and eight more games will be played. On Friday Carlsen has the white pieces again. The prize money, provided by the Tamil Nadu government, is about 14 crore rupees (US $2,212,210 / € 1,644,034).

The handshake before what would be a amazing game 4
Photographers and policemen on the other side of the glass...
...again observed by Carlsen
Policemen can also be found inside the press room, enjoying the commentary
5.d4, a proper Berlin Endgame!
Different shirt & jacket for Anand...
...with a different sponsor
The players were in a good mood at the press conference

50266 reads 161 comments
16 votes


  • 3 years ago


    In the 36... Rd8 variation, why can white not win the R with Ned6+ like in the other variations?

  • 3 years ago


    Carlsen lost the chance to win. Anand should take no more risk.

  • 3 years ago


    also give carlsen some of those Crocin pills!

  • 3 years ago


    Perhaps Anand will be defend his title... it is just a bet.

  • 3 years ago


    young chess players should learn a lot from these two chess gladiators.both the players are playing draws are inevitable

  • 3 years ago


    It seems Ananad is more prepared.

  • 3 years ago


    That commercial is terrible! Smile

    The game was very good. I wonder why Magnus let the knight hang out so long on b5, though. Even a beginning player will have the instinct to kick that kind of advanced knight back to the middle when possible, so he must have had some sort of reason for wanting to let it stay... dunno.

  • 3 years ago


    Come on Vishy, show them who the real Champion is!

  • 3 years ago


    Good Defence by Anand.

  • 3 years ago


    really enjoyed that one.

  • 3 years ago


    It is very interesting to hear of a very different perspective on the white play -- by Kasparov himself.  While everyone was looking for ways to save the game for white, Kasparov was looking for ways to win for white after the pawn "sacrifice" (at least until move 31).  A powerful testimony to his skills in dynamic play and his usual disregard of trifles like being a pawn down in exchange for interesting play ahead...

    I watched the Russian commentary on chessTV (different from TV) by GM Sergey Shipov, and as usual his insightful remarks made it a memorable game with a genuinely deep understanding of what was going on and why various options were less exciting.  Starting from around move 20, after the so-called pawn sacrifice, Anand played incredibly strongly -- finding sometimes even nuances that commentators aided by computers hadn't spotted.

  • 3 years ago


    Anand's looking a lot chubbier in the ad

  • 3 years ago


    @Skaboard: certainly referring to the dubious manoeuvres Ne1 - Nd3 - Ne2 which allowed Bxa2, I guess Wink? It indeed meant trouble, for Anand, that is...

    But this doesn't tell the story of the rest of the game, in which Anand obtained very dynamical play with his knights, of course.

  • 3 years ago


    only in chess can you have a score of 1-1 after 4 games Laughing

  • 3 years ago


    @andretam I don't think anyone would say its a fluke. Personally, I don't think that Carlsen is at a higher level than Anand or any other super GM and similarly, no-other GM is playing at a higher level than him. I think a lot of his success is coming from the fact that he is young, he has the ambition and the stamina. So essentially, my opinion is that it's not his chess that is making him so successful, but other great qualities that he possesses. 

  • 3 years ago


    Maybe next game Carlsen will play e4.

  • 3 years ago


    If carlsen can win this world championship Others will think he is just a fluke of bieng a no. 1 and a highest rated player in the world. He must win this one I am rooting for him. come-on Magnus.

  • 3 years ago


    Just remembered and interview with Kramnik. He said its a good idea to get rid of Anand's knights because when they start to jump around it means trouble. The man knows what he is talking about.

  • 3 years ago


    respect to both players, a great game. two great mindes and personalities...

  • 3 years ago


    someone give chesszking a sedative

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