Anand jumps to third spot

World rapid champion Viswanthan Anand gave a double blow to Ukrainian Vassily Ivanchuk to jump to sole third position in the Amber tournament.

updated: February 25, 2007 10:06 IST
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World rapid champion Viswanthan Anand took full advantage of his opponent's mistakes to give a double blow to Ukrainian Vassily Ivanchuk in the 10th and penultimate round of Amber blindfold and rapid chess tournament to jump to sole third position. The victory helped Anand in narrowing the gap from Russian joint leaders Vladimir Kramnik and Alexander Morozevich as both squandered away a full point lead and lost their rapid games against compatriot Peter Svidler and Evgeny Bareev respectively. As things stand with just one more round to go in this 1,93,250 Euros prize money tournament, both Kramnik and Morozevich, with 13 points each, are a point ahead of Anand. Hungarian Peter Leko shares the fourth place along with Bareev with 11.5 points while another half point behind are Svidler and Ivanchuk. The last round could be anyone's gain as both Morozevich and Kramnik have tough opponents in the form of Svidler and Topalov respectively. And that gives Anand a real chance to catch up with leaders as he is pitted against Boris Gelfand of Israel. Anand leads Meanwhile, Anand continued to be at the helm on 7 points out of a possible 10 in rapid section and is followed by Bareev, who is half point behind. In the blindfold section, Morozevich maintained his sole lead on 8 points out of a possible 11 while Kramnik continued to be a half point adrift. Anand moved to joint fifth in this section behind Ivanchuk and Leko who both have 6 points each. Anand finally got his winning touch in the blindfold after missing out for last six games albeit with a little help from lady luck. The opening was a closed Ruy Lopez wherein Ivanchuk saw himself in troubles in the endgame after blundering away a superior position. 61 move win Anand went for the tactical complications when the situation warranted and found Ivanchuk completely off-guard. The Indian won an exchange for effectively no compensation and romped home in 61 moves. Ivanchuk was so shocked that the despair showed on board. The Ukrainian continued a rook down position before resigning. In the rapid too, Anand did not get anything desirable with his white pieces against the French defence. The game was fought on even keel for the major part of the game and Anand even proposed a draw in the middle game that was spurned down. Aimlessly playing for a victory in a position that was level, Ivanchuk blundered on the 46th move and resigned on the very next, giving Anand two points in as many games. Morozevich defeated Bareev from an equal position drawn from a Caro Kann in the blindfold but was outmanoeuvred in the rapid game. Kramnik was a little lucky in snatching the full point against Svidler in a Sicilian defence game in the blindfold duel when the latter went for unwarranted complications that proved costly. In the rapid however, Svidler settled the scores with lively play against Berlin defence of white. (PTI)