Vishy Anand Retains World Championship!

  • SonofPearl
  • on 5/30/12, 6:20 AM.

World Champion Vishy Anand has retained his title in a tense and exciting tie-break playoff with Boris Gelfand.

The Indian champion missed a winning opportunity in the first game with black, but won the second game of the 4-game tie-break when some excellent preparation drove Gelfand into terrible time-trouble and he lost a drawn ending.

Anand was lucky to survive a cramped position in game three, with the challenger missing the crushing 26. Nxe4, and Anand drew the final game to retain the title.

After the match Anand's immediate reaction was, "I'm too tense to be happy, but I'm really relieved".


Game 1: A very sharp and tactical game ended with a draw.  Gelfand erred with 19.a4? which allowed 19...Qf3 and it looked like Anand had winning chances, but he seemed surprised by 22.Ra3 after which the advantage swung back to Gelfand.  Despite this, Anand managed to hold for a draw.  A missed opportunity for Anand?


WCC Anand v Gelfand tie-break game 1 pic4.jpg



Game 2: Vishy Anand wins and takes the lead! The opening followed game 10 until Anand varied with 7.d4.  Gelfand was caught in the champion's preparation, and fell behind on the clock as he tried to solve his opening problems.

Anand found the strong move 17.Rg5, obtaining an excellent position, but Gelfand fought hard and achieved great drawing chances. Alas for the Israeli challenger, he was unable to continue to find the best moves as he survived solely on the 10 second increment, and Anand took the lead.


WCC Anand v Gelfand tie-break game 2 pic2.jpg


Game 3: Another exciting draw. Anand varied with 4...Bf5 and Gelfand grabbed a lot of space with 13.c5 and 14.f4.  Anand's pieces became badly unco-ordinated and he sacrificed a pawn to free them and gain some activity.

Once again Gelfand was well behind on the clock and he missed the winning 26. Nxe4 after which Anand eventually achieved a draw.


WCC Anand v Gelfand tie-break game 3 pic 4.jpg


Game 4: Vishy Anand draws the game with white and retains his title!

Anand exchanged queens early on to simplify the position at the cost of a slightly better position for his opponent. 

Gelfand didn't need to be asked twice to attack, and threw his pawns forward on both sides of the board.  But the champion had it all under control, and despite Gelfand's desperate efforts, he had to settle for a draw and the end of his challenge.

Anand wins the match on tie-breaks 2½-1½.


WCC Anand v Gelfand tie-break game 4.jpg


A happy Vishy Anand at the press conference...
WCC Anand v Gelfand tie-break press conference Vishy Anand.jpg
...contrasted with the defeated challenger Boris Gelfand
WCC Anand v Gelfand tie-breal press conference Boris Gelfand.jpg

24873 reads 157 comments
14 votes


  • 4 years ago


    @diogens -- No format is perfect. Earlier too there were whiners with interzonal/ tournament format and so on. There is no perfect system, Kasparov himself created a parallel format and was partly involved with the mess with the FIDE system in the 90s. Easy to criticize the format when you are not in it/ when you are out of that format/ when your favorite player is out of it. Matches are correct format to select for WC matches, because in tournament there is a chance you can gobble with weak opponents/ matches can be fixed (as thought by Fischer). 

    Bottomline: Whiners will whine whatever the format is.

    Now, let's look at the other way which you are talking about computers and so on... Now lets look at 1990s, the majority of the great novelities prepared by Kasparov involved massive amounts of information, seconds, resources and so on, which was not widely available to other players, now computers provide level playing field, so more or less many Top GMs stand at a level playing field. So, in this current situation it is difficult to shine than in previous era, where information/ resources were limited to a select few.

    Another thing you are ignorining, earlier era people/books/resources helped certain players who had them and others suffered due to lack of those, but now with computers/software everyone is rich with resources. Also, there is a progress in every field, so why chess should be stagnant and not use newest technology?

    Basically, it happens in all fields, even you have excelled in a field and are currently idle without not much going on, you pick up every issue to be in the limelight, specially for Kasparov, whose ego is bigger than Mt.Everest.

  • 4 years ago


    BUT ALMOST ALL PEOPLE use to LOVE GARY KASPAROV's super chessmaster of the history (till now). i love his Brazilian( alike to brazillian soccer players) chess games! congratulate new champions . congratulation dear Ananad.

    congratulations to all nice smart brave frank strong people

  • 4 years ago


  • 4 years ago


    I congratulate anand for his victory this year and hope to see him win against carlsen for the next championship... that will be his real test...

  • 4 years ago


    Congratulations to Anand! What can i to say-he don't won-Boris did it himself.Where was champions attacks-only WAITING (Boris had very good attack in rapid game 3-but he taked "BAD PIECE"-Bb8-he only need to take "GOOD PIECE "-Ne4)."BACK TO SCHOOL".Kasparov was RIGHT-it is not champions level!

  • 4 years ago


    New format suggestion. Playing a round robin as the upcoming Candidates will be fun for sure. With seven opponents of different styles, opening preparation will be diluted. You can prepare deeply to neutralize a single opponent but seven? Another advantage is that speculative chess would be penalized because you could easily be kicked off by players with more determination.

    The main flaw of this system is that in final rounds, players out of chance could let themselves go a bit, play weaker and bias the result. So I would rather seek for a format that blends the best of round robin and match play.

    I.ex. 1st round robin of 8 players as in the next candidates tournament (14 games). The 3 first would qualify for the 2nd. round robin and will be joined by the world champion.

    2nd round robin. The scores of the 1st. one will be taken into account, but only the ones obtained against the rest of qualifiers. World Champion would enter with the same points as the winner of the first league. (6 games)

    3rd. step. Two first places will play a mini-match of four games for the title. Again, the result of their previous encounters will be taken into account. So in this way, they would have played a 6/8 games match, but not knowing in the first games that they were already helding the match.

    @NimzoRoy. TC for rapid were 25+10 and for blitz I think 3 (or 5)+3

  • 4 years ago


    @Skand. I think you completely misunderstood Kasparov comment. He never undermined Anand as being a worthy WC. He even backed Anand in his contest vs. Topalov two years ago.

    What Kasparov said is that for the first time in history, the WCC match doesn't seem to decide who is the strongest player in the world. It would have been different if Anand played vs. Carlsen or Aronian. So what is Kasparov critisizing? Not Anand or Gelfand for sure, but the qualifying system that as Carlsen forecasted, showed a completely failure in Kazan and ratified in Moscow.

    Even a speculative player like Grischuk, who almost did it for the match, advocates to introduce such a controversial issue, as using chess960 to decide the WCC.

    So if Kasparov, Carlsen, Grischuk and many others criticize the running format, something is going wrong. Why is that? Because of chess engines opening preparation. In old times, when a novellty was introduced, many scalps were taken before the line was confirmed or refuted. Today, the engine gives inmediate reply to these questions. Players are so afraid of opponents preparation that play as safely as they can. Thus, quick draws agreed in early middlegame positions where for these kind of eliteGMs, draw is just a matter of technique.

    Find it boring or not there is an objective truth. Chess was always about mastering three phases: opening-middlegame-endgame. Now is all about the opening. Middlegame play is frequently aborted by quick draws and endgame is almost non-existent.

  • 4 years ago


    Well I didn't think very much of this match before it started but on the other hand is it Gelfand's fault no one higher-up on the TOP 100 list qualified to play Anand? My main objection is the short duration - 20 games @ 40/120 should be the absolute minimum for a WCC.

    AND not to be a nit-picker but what was the TL for the playoff games?

  • 4 years ago


    yes it is boring champs. and seems gelfand is nor wort a champion and these draws are stupid somone has to to something

  • 4 years ago


    Yep, Anand won the title, congratulations.  He managed to beat a top 20 bottom player Gelfand, according to the last FIDE rating listing as-of May 2012 (  Let's see how Anand fares against the other 18 players (especially those of them from the top 10) in the coming months/years.

  • 4 years ago


    Ah, close and yet.....

  • 4 years ago


    Congrats to Anand.

    I honestly got sick of hearing about Carlsen and Aronian during this.

  • 4 years ago


    @channet Good point. You could add "without whining" to that comment. :)

  • 4 years ago


    anand is too defensive,plays the most boring chess of all the world champions.its the reason as to why he's hard to beat.

  • 4 years ago


    congratzzz vishy on winning the titile....u shud watch out for carlsen in the future....!!!

  • 4 years ago


    Magnus Carlsen is very talented , but he still has to prove himself in the candidates cycle format.I am sure he would be up to it.

  • 4 years ago


    Congrats to Anand. You are a real hero. I hope you will retain champ untill you retire. I hope you will win against Carlson in 2014.

  • 4 years ago


    Viva Viswanathan Anand!

  • 4 years ago


    love how Anand built his fortress for the last game.

    Congratulation to Viswanathan Anand :D

  • 4 years ago


    Rapid chess is any one game. Best wishes to Anand and gelfand.

Back to Top

Post your reply: