Anand pulls off hat-trick win at Mainz Chess Classic

8/18/2003 – After two previous wins in the Mainz Chess Classic Anand today clinched a third title with two straight victories over Judit Polgar. The Indian rapid chess champ started the day with a break of tradition: unlike on the first three days he won the first game. After that he took the final game without giving his plucky opponent much of a chance. Meanwhile Peter Svidler defeated Peter Leko to become the first "WNCA" champion. Report, pictures and games...

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Rapid chess final result: Anand vs Polgar 5:3

In many ways this was a break from the three previous days. For the first time Anand won the first game, for the first time in the match he went into the lead. Reacting to the sixth Sicilian in seven games Anand played cautiously in the openings phase, taking a defensive route while Judit Polgar, as usual, invested everything into the attack. And for a long time it looked as though she would repeat the usual first-game victory.

But then Anand mobilised his king, which was languishing on h1, and rode it across the board to clinch victory.


The path of Vishy's "iron king" in game seven

In the final game of this match Vishy Anand switched to the Ruy Lopez and held on to a complex position, allowed Judit to launch her trade-mark kingside attack, while picking up loose black pawns on the queenside. White got into deeper and deeper trouble and tried a knight sacrifice, which Anand cooly refuted to take the final game and the match.

"I was nervous and played badly," said Judit in the post match press briefing. Anand's second GM Rustem Dautov explained Anand's strategy: "We thought playing Sicilian in the last game against Judit whould be asking for trouble, and hence went for the Ruy Lopez."

"The final game was very plesant and at some point it looked like a dream position. This will go down as the most tense rapid match I have played," said the Champion.

Replay and download the games here


Chess960: Svidler vs Leko 4.5:3.5


Peter Svidler and Peter Leko during ther Chess960 match

Peter Svidler is the first official WNCA (World New Chess Association) world champion. The Russian player won the last game in his match against Peter Leko and won the match with a narrow margin: 4,5-3,5.

Svidler ."I was outplayed in the opening in all games, but as soon as I started getting the pieces from the back rank , I played good chess". Next year Peter has to defend his title next year against the winner of the Chess960 Open, Levon Aronian.

In the Chess960 World Championship match Peter Svidler today drew level in the sixth game, after the fifth was drawn. The score is now 3:3, just as in the Anand-Polgar match. The games can be found on the official web site. Click "The Finale: Chess960" in the left navigation. On the report page the games are on the right in CBV or PGN format. Note that due to the unusual castling rules in Chess960 the games have to be split into two or three parts, because all current chess programs would consider the castlings illegal.


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