World Championship 2012
This ‘sorry’ caricature of a chess match ended in another draw. In the final position (Diagram) Anand (playing White) was up a Pawn and Gelfand was under time pressure (18 moves in 15 minutes). So – the current World Champion offered a draw on move 22 which was readily accepted. The drawn ‘match’ now goes into Rapids/Blitz/Armageddon consciousness to be conducted after a ‘Rest Day’. It might be interesting to see how the chess world ‘accepts’ their new ‘champion’ after Wednesday. Personally speaking – it’s not that the match is a draw; there have been drawn chess matches before. What takes this match and sinks it to an all-time low, is the lack of ambition and/or fighting spirit with both participants. Truly – Two prime specimens of the Boneless Chicken Ranch.
Another Win ! Botvinik was once asked a question (I believe it was from Spassky) as to how to break out of the ‘mold’ of a string of draws in a match and win a game. Botvinik’s answer was – First lose a game. Correct or not, it seems to have ‘worked’ for Anand who won (as White) one of the shortest games on record in a World Championship match – 17 Moves ! In the diagram position Gelfand has already blundered with his Qf6. Admittedly a retreat with his Knight to g7 was not particularly inviting as White is ready to run with the ‘h’ Pawn and have a rip roaring attack towards the black King. Gelfand’s blunder was based on the assumption that White had to defend against the fork on ‘f3′ giving Black the opportunity to sink his Knight into the ‘f4′ square. Alas – Vishy ‘fell for it’. He took the hanging Knight, allowed Boris to affect his fork and on the 17th move the World Champion completely corralled the isolated black Queen who will fall as soon as White moves his Bishop. Ouch ! – No squares for her majesty. The match is now all tied up, one game apiece, after eight games.
The second half of the match began with a WIN; Gelfand commanding the white pieces. Anand was not able to pull himself out of a bad ending and in the final position Black can promote a Pawn, but will end up getting mated by a Rook and two Knights. The question now remains – Can Anand pull himself together and play like a World Champion or will Gelfand keep him down under his thumb? Whatever – the tide has changed in the match; we have the first win in seven games.