Vishy Anand Retains World Title!

Vishy Anand Retains World Title!

| 127 | Chess Event Coverage

Viswanathan Anand has retained his world chess championship title in a nail-biting final game victory against the challenger, Veselin Topalov!

The Indian champion seemed to have lost the initiative in the match and was expected to have to fight hard for a draw with the black pieces in the last game to take the match into tie-breaks.

Anand quickly defused any aggressive intentions from Topalov with the rock-solid Lasker Defence to the Queen's Gambit.

However, it soon became apparent that Anand was playing for a win, and Topalov obliged with a terrible mistake to allow Anand to sacrifice a pawn for a devastating attack.

Somehow the Bulgarian challenger staggered on past the first time control, but Anand was not to be denied, and Topalov was forced to resign in a hopeless position at move 56.

So a fantastic match comes to a fitting end, with no tie-breaks needed. Both players deserve much praise for contributing hugely to what was a very exciting match.

Send Vishy Anand your congratulations by signing an e-card for him! Link here.

Thanks also to the team of commentators who kept us all entertained during the games with their wise and witty comments!

And not forgetting GM Magesh Panchanathan for his quick and instructive comments and post-game analysis for all the games. Here's Magesh for one last time...

To all our readers there is only one thing that can be said about today's game, “Who would have imagined this?”. Topalov, the second highest rated player in the world ended up playing a move that deserted all logical chess ideas. It was very difficult to believe what had just happened on the board as I saw him play exf5 followed by fxe4 without even taking much time on his clock. Unfortunately a world championship match takes a big toll on ones nerves and up until the last game it looked like Anand was the one who was feeling that pressure more.

After taking the lead and maintaining it by half time, Anand looked like he was sliding a bit, particularly games 8,9 and 10 looked bad from the result and the psychological point of view for him. Topalov on the other hand was consistently pushing and pushing each game and he even managed to win one and survive a completely lost game to reach this final game of the match. Eventually it looks like Topalov had all his pressure saved up for the big occasion.

By the end of the opening Topalov was slightly better, but he was facing some active counter play from Anand. One should give credit to Anand for playing very active in the last game, I am sure this was an impact of his other black games where he kept going back into extremely passive positions and suffered quite a bit. Once Topalov made his fatal mistake, there was just no looking back for Anand. He finished off the game with clinical precision.

Wanted to share one funny comment from the strong Spanish Grandmaster Miguel Illescas who was commenting for Internet Chess Club. Towards the end he said, “Topalov is actually waiting for Anand to accidentally knock his king down, so he can claim that he won”. Would be an interesting way to win a WC match :)

Once again the Tiger from Madras has proved his might after winning his second consecutive World Championship Match against two extremely strong Grandmasters, Kramnik and Topalov. Who cannot love this down to earth and modest guy who is just fantastic within this 64 square maze????

The next championship cycle to decide who will challenge Anand for the title will feature:

  • The loser of this match (Veselin Topalov)
  • The runner up in the 2009 qualifiers (Gata Kamsky)
  • The winner of the 2009 World Cup (Boris Gelfand)
  • The winner (Lev Aronian) and runner-up (tbd) of the Grand Prix Series
  • The two other highest rated players (Magnus Carlsen and Vladimir Kramnik)
  • A wildcard chosen by the organisers (tbd, must be above 2700 Elo)
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