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Anand shares honours with Carlsen

March 23, 2008 20:24 IST

World champion Viswanathan Anand won the blindfold but lost the rapid game against Magnus Carlsen of Norway to remain in sole second after the end of the seventh round of the Amber Blindfold and Rapid Chess tournament in France.

The Indian ace suffered his first ever defeat against Carlsen in a rapid game after winning the blindfold and fell a full point behind Levon Aronian of Armenia in the combined standings after the latter defeated Veselin Topalov of Bulgaria 1.5-0.5.

While Aronian took his combined tally to nine points from 14 games played so far, Anand is now on eight points. Carlsen, Peter Leko of Hungary and Vladimir Kramnik of Russia are a half point adrift of the Indian and share the third spot jointly. Four rounds or eight games still remain in the unique event that has one blindfold and one rapid game in each round.

Anand improved his blindfold standings and jumped to joint second on four points behind Russian Alexander Morozevich who has 5.5 points to his kitty.

The rapid section still has Aronian in sole lead on 5.5 points while Anand and Leko share the second spot with four points apiece.

Anand now needs to win a few matches to be in contention for top honour in all sections. The next round will be important for Anand when he takes on in-form Aronian.

It was another good day for Anand in the blindfold even though his form in the rapid did not come good. The blindfold game was a one-sided affair after Carlsen went for the Alekhine defence and was in trouble right after the opening.

Anand had the bishop pair and all Carlsen could do was wait till the Indian came up with a central pawn thrust. At one stage Anand had 17 minutes against four of Carlsen and this was another detrimental factor for the youngster from Norway. Anand won a piece in return for a couple of feeble pawns. No one was surprised when Carlsen resigned on move 47.

In the rapid game, Anand played fast and put pressure on his opponent in the opening. Carlsen, however, netted an extra pawn in a tactical move and converted his advantage with ease in 48 moves.

In other games, Aronian drew with Topalov in the blindfold game and then coasted to victory in the rapid with fine all-round display. The Armenian won the rapid game and the match in just 35 moves.

Round seven results (Blindfold): Alexander Morozevich (Rus) beat Vassily Ivanchuk (Ukr); Vladimir Kramnik (Rus) drew with Loek Van Wely (Ned); Peter Leko (Hun) drew with Boris Gelfand (Isr); Shakhriyar Mamedyarov (Aze) drew with Sergey Karjakin (Ukr); Veselin Topalov (Bul) drew with Levon Aronian (Arm); Viswanathan Anand (Ind) beat Magnus Carlsen (Nor).

Rapid: Ivanchuk  drew with Morozevich; Van Wely drew with Kramnik; Gelfand drew with Leko; Karjakin drew with Mamedyarov; Aronian beat Topalov; Carlsen beat Anand.

Combined Standings: 1. Aronian 9; 2. Anand 8; 3-5. Leko, Kramnik, Carlsen 7.5; 6-8. Topalov, Ivanchuk, Morozevich 7; 9. Karjakin 6.5; 10. Mamedyarov 6; 11-12. Gelfand, Van Wely 5.5.

Blindfold Standings: 1. Morozevich 5; 2-5. Kramnik, Anand, Topalov, Carlsen 4; 6-8. Leko, Ivanchuk, Aronian 3.5; 9-10. Van Wely, Karjakin 3; 11. Mamedyarov 2.5; 12. Gelfand 2.

Rapid Standings: 1. Aronian 5.5; 2-3. Leko, Anand 4.0; 4-9. Gelfand, Mamedyarov, Ivanchuk, Karjakin, Carlsen, Kramnik 3.5; 10. Topalov 3.0; 11. Van Wely 2.5; 12. Morozevich 2.0

The moves: Blindfold: V Anand vs Magnus Carlsen - 1. e4 Nf6 2. e5 Nd5 3. d4 d6 4. Nf3 dxe5 5. Nxe5 c6 6. Be2 Nd7 7. Nf3 N7f6 8. O-O Bf5 9. Nh4 Bg6 10. c4 Nb6 11. Nc3 e6 12. g3 Be7 13. Be3 Qc7 14. Nxg6 hxg6 15. Qb3 Rd8 16. Rfd1 O-O 17. Rac1 e5 18. d5 Nbd7 19. Bf3 Bc5 20. Bxc5 Nxc5 21. Qa3 b6 22. b4 e4 23. Be2 Nb7 24. Qxa7 Ra8 25. d6 Rxa7 26. dxc7 Rc8 27. c5 bxc5 28. b5 cxb5 29. Nxb5 Rxa2 30. Bf1 g5 31. Ra1 Rxa1 32. Rxa1 Nd8 33. cxd8=Q Rxd8 34. Nc3 e3 35. f3 g4 36. f4 g5 37. fxg5 Nh7 38. Ne4 Re8 39. Bg2 Kg7 40. Kf1 e2 41. Ke1 Re5 42. Rc1 Nxg5 43. Rxc5 Rxc5 44. Nxc5 f5 45. Kxe2 Kf6 46. Ke3 Nf7 47. Nd3 black resigned

Rapid: Carlsen vs Anand - 1. c4 e5 2. g3 c6 3. d4 e4 4. d5 Nf6 5. Bg2 Bb4 6. Bd2 Qe7 7. Nc3 O-O 8. a3 Bc5 9. e3 d6 10. Nge2 cxd5 11. Nxd5 Nxd5 12. cxd5 Nd7 13. O-O Nf6 14. Bc3 Bg4 15. Bxf6 Qxf6 16. b4 Bb6 17. Bxe4 a5 18. bxa5 Rxa5 19. Bxh7 Kxh7 20. Qb1 g6 21. Qxb6 Rfa8 22. Qd4 Qf3 23. Nc3 Re8 24. h3 Bf5 25. Qf6 Kg8 26. Rab1 Rxe3 27. Rxb7 Bc8 28. Qd8 Kg7 29. Qxc8 Rxc3 30. Rxf7 Kxf7 31. Qd7 Kf6 32. Qd8 Kf5 33. Qxa5 Rxa3 34. Qb4 Ke5 35. Qd2 Rd3 36. Qg5 Qf5 37. Re1 Kxd5 38. Qxf5 gxf5 39. Kg2 Ra3 40. h4 Kd4 41. h5 d5 42. h6 Ra7 43. Kf3 Rh7 44. Re6 Kc3 45. Rc6 Kd3 46. Kf4 Rf7 47. Kg5 Ke2 48. Rd6 black resigned.

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