Carlsen Takes 3-2 Lead

Carlsen Takes 3-2 Lead

By Arvind Aaron

World No.1 Magnus Carlsen of Norway snatched a crucial lead after world champion Viswanathan Anand made a single mistake on move 45 to lose on move 58. Carlsen has taken a 3-2 lead after five games in the FIDE World Chess Championship match that is taking place at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Chennai.

Norway room applauded the victory with clapping of hands and shouting when Anand resigned. “It feels good to break the deadlock and take the lead,” said Carlsen.

“The rook ending was very difficult,” said Anand who blundered on move 45. However, Anand said his “34…Rd4” was the cause of all the problems for black.

The fifth game started with Carlsen making the first move. There was a mild surprise waiting for him. Anand went for a variation of the Semi-Slav which he had played successfully since defeating Kramnik with the black pieces in Belgrade in the Investbanka Tournament, 1997.

rd5_2Carlsen castled queen side and allowed early exchange of queens. Using double bishops, Anand was hoping to equalise and make a draw fairly easily. However, with an intricate move on the 19th turn, white was able to keep the pressure on black.

After 23 moves, the players were in a double rooks and same colour bishop ending. Black’s king side rook was not developed early and that factor offered Carlsen a small but unseen advantage.

“Tricky, but under control,” was how former world junior champion Abhijeet Gupta described the game after 36 moves. In the second time control, Carlsen won a pawn on move 42 but black’s pieces were active and had sufficient compensation.

It was difficult to see a promising continuation for white but that was how Carlsen played his games. Many of his wins in his career are due to mistakes from his opponents. Chess being an equal mathematical puzzle, is won by games due to mistakes of players.

Black’s 45…Rc1+ was not the most accurate and the advantage went to the white side. Sadly for Anand, Carlsen pressed home a big advantage and won on move 58.

“It is not about who wins first but who wins the match,” said Carlsen. Carlsen said he took time in the opening to get used to the unconventional position. He said white had an advantage with strong bishop and better pawn structure.

Anand had come from behind in the last two matches and his fans need not lose heart. For Saturday’s game all seats are taken. Anand will play white in the next two games and can use it to neutralise the deficit.

Seven games remain to be played in this best of 12 series. Anand will have the advantage of making the first move in the next two games. The first player to reach 6.5 points wins the Rs.14 Crore prize money event. Sixty percent goes to the winner and the remaining 40% to the loser. The total budget of Rs.29 Crores is funded by the Tamil Nadu Government.

The two players are also endorsing products when they come to the playing and press room for post game analysis. Anand had NIIT, Complan and Crocin on his shirts in various of his games. Carlsen also endorses products like Verdens Gang AS, a media company and Arctic Parallels.

Two of the side show events along with the FIDE World Chess Championship has been completed. The Women Grand Master Tournament was won by Woman Grand Master Mary Ann Gomes of Kolkata. The National Under-9 Chess Championship was won by Nihal Sarin of Kottayam, Kerala and Divya Deshmukh of Nagpur, Maharashtra.

Two other side show events start today. The Grand Master Open, the Rating event for Under-2100 and the Chief Minister’s trophy Schools event. Huge chess activity is happening in Indian chess. “Indian chess has never been so upbeat,” said Malarvizhi Harihara, a former Tamil Nadu Chess player.

Former world under-12 champion Karthikeyan Murali of Chennai won his fourth title in five appearances at the chess solving competition organised at the Hyatt Regency Hotel this evening. This competition is organised by the award winning International Chess Problemist C.G.S. Narayanan of Chennai. It happens on all world championship game days at the lobby of the Hyatt Regency Hotel at 4 p.m.

The moves:

White: Magnus Carlsen
Black: Viswanathan Anand
Queen’s Gambit, Semi-Slav D31
1. c4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 c6 4. e4 dxe4 5. Nxe4 Bb4+ 6. Nc3 c5 7. a3 Ba5 8. Nf3 Nf6 9. Be3 Nc6 10. Qd3 cxd4 11. Nxd4 Ng4 12. O-O-O Nxe3 13. fxe3 Bc7 14. Nxc6 bxc6 15. Qxd8+ Bxd8 16. Be2 Ke7 17. Bf3 Bd7 18. Ne4 Bb6 19. c5 f5 20. cxb6 fxe4 21. b7 Rab8 22. Bxe4 Rxb7 23. Rhf1 Rb5 24. Rf4 g5 25. Rf3 h5 26. Rdf1 Be8 27. Bc2 Rc5 28. Rf6 h4 29. e4 a5 30. Kd2 Rb5 31. b3 Bh5 32. Kc3 Rc5+ 33. Kb2 Rd8 34. R1f2 Rd4 35. Rh6 Bd1 36. Bb1 Rb5 37. Kc3 c5 38. Rb2 e5 39. Rg6 a4 40. Rxg5 Rxb3+ 41. Rxb3 Bxb3 42. Rxe5+ Kd6 43. Rh5 Rd1 44. e5+ Kd5 45. Bh7 Rc1+ 46. Kb2 Rg1 47. Bg8+ Kc6 48. Rh6+ Kd7 49. Bxb3 axb3 50. Kxb3 Rxg2 51. Rxh4 Ke6 52. a4 Kxe5 53. a5 Kd6 54. Rh7 Kd5 55. a6 c4+ 56. Kc3 Ra2 57. a7 Kc5 58. h4 Kd5 1-0.