Chess Classic 2004: Anand leads Shirov 4:2

8/8/2004 – With one day and two games to go India's Vishy Anand leads Alexei Shirov by two points in their Rapid Chess match. In the Chess960 (Fischer Random) between Peter Svidler and Levon Aronian all six games were decided for a 3:3 score. The FiNet Chess960 Open was won by Zoltan Almasi. Details in our illustrated report.

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Mainz Chess Classic 2004

Rheingoldhalle Mainz
August 4 – 8, 2004

The Chess Classic in Mainz enters its last day on Sunday, wrapping up the Super-GM matches and the big Ordix Rapid Chess open. All details are to be found on our Chess Classic intro page. If you are looking for live coverage of the games you can go to the official Chess Classic home page (click "Live transmission" on the left) or visit our chess server Playchess.com, where the organisers have kindly arranges a live relay.


"Duel of the World Champions"

That is the official title of the big Rapid Chess match between Vishy Anand and Alexei Shirov. On day one Anand won his white game, on day two both games were drawn (with Anand pressing), and on Saturday the Indian Super-GM once again won his white game to take a comfortable two-point lead. Alexei Shirov seems to be somewhat off-form, at least as far as his preparation goes, but still all games were well-fought and interesting. Take a look at what happened in game four:

Shirov,A (2725) - Anand,V (2782) [C80]
Rapid Match Mainz GER (4), 06.08.2004
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.0-0 Nxe4 6.d4 b5 7.Bb3 d5 8.dxe5 Be6 9.Nbd2 Nc5 10.c3 d4 11.Ng5 Qxg5 12.Qf3 0-0-0 13.Bxe6+ fxe6 14.Qxc6 Qxe5 15.b4 Qd5 16.Qxd5 exd5 17.bxc5 dxc3 18.Nb3 d4 19.Ba3 g6 20.Bb4 Bg7 21.a4 d3 22.axb5 d2 23.c6 Kb8

In this position Shirov, who is under considerable pressure, played the normal 24.Rad1 to try and stop those menacing black pawns. Garry Kasparov, following the game on the server, suggested the following startling "save": 24.Rxa6! Even Fritz does not find this move, which allows Black to queen: 24...d1Q. White cannot capture because of the backrank mate (25.Rxd1?? Rxd1#), but he has the following continuation in mind: 25.Bc5! Qxb3 26.Ba7+ Kc8 27.Bd4 Qxb5 28.Ra8+ Qb8 29.Rxb8+ Kxb8 30.Rb1+ Kc8 31.Ra1 Kb8 32.Rb1+ and perpetual check.

The game continued 24...Rd5 25.bxa6 Rhd8 26.Na1 Ka7 27.Nc2 Rb8 28.Rb1 Rdb5? [28...Bf8! would have probably settled the game in Black's favour] 29.Rb3 R8b6 30.Rxc3 Bxc3 31.Bxc3 Rc5 32.Bxd2 Rxc2 33.Be3 Kxa6 34.Bxb6 cxb6 35.f4 b5 36.g4 Rxc6 37.f5 gxf5 38.gxf5 b4 39.f6 Rc8 40.Kg2 b3 41.Rb1 Rf8 42.Rxb3 ½-½.

Standings after six rounds



Alexei Shirov, not in the greatest form against Vishy Anand


Anand, on the other hand, seems unstoppable these days


Gerling Match Chess960 World Championship

In the Chess960 (Fischer Random) event every single game was decided, with Peter Svidler and Levon Aronian winning with black and with white. The score is now 3:3 with two games to be played on Sunday. Since our JavaScript applet and our chess engines all don't understand the castling rules of Fischer Random chess we send you to the official home page for details:


Levon Aronian vs Peter Svidler in the Chess960


Peter Svidler faces the unusual setup with equanimity


FiNet Chess960 Open

Hungarian GM Zoltan Almasi, who plays for SC Kreuzberg in Berlin, was the undefeated winner of FiNet Chess960 Open, scoring 9.5 points out of 11 games. Almasi won eight games and drew three. French GM Etienne Bacrot, who had a 100% score after seven rounds, but could not keep up the pace and shared second with Rublevsky, Morozevich, Sadvakasov, Kobalia, Naiditsch and Tregubov. All scored 8.5 points.


Zoltan Almasi vs Damen Sadvakasov in Chess960


11th ORDIX Open

The Ordix Rapid Chess open is under way, with a record-breaking 542 participants, including 69 grandmasters, 44 IMs, 43 FMs. At the end of day one there are six players in the lead with perfect scores of 5/5. They are Alexander Grishuk, Rustem Dautov, Etienne Bacrot, Sergey Karjakin, Kiril Georgiev and Jan Ehlvest. One of the favorites Ruslan Ponomariov conceded two draws, and the top seed Alexander Morozevich even lost a game. Women's world champion Antoaneta Stefanova has a very respectable 4.5 points. On Sunday six more rounds will be played, with games starting at 10.00 am.


Women's world champion Antoaneta Stefanova doing jest fine in Mainz


Former world champion Ruslan Ponomariov defending a predecessor


Our chess supermodel Carmen Kass playing chess in the catering area


Press conference after the games with Aronian, Anand, Svidler and Shirov

Photo by Thilo Gubler, Hartmut Metz and Dagobert Kohlmeyer

Previous reports

Chess Classic 2004: Carmen in Mainz
06.08.2004 She is one of the top ten earning super-models in the world, and a "kick-ass" chess player. And the President of the Estonian Chess Federation. Carmen Kass is the star guest at the Chess Classic, where she took on the chess champs in blitz games. (Oh, yes, Anand scored in his Rapid Chess match against Shirov). Here's the Carmen Kass story...

Chess Classic 2004: A change of pace
05.08.2004 Unlike Dortmund, the Mainz Chess Classic, which begins today, propagates faster and unusual forms of chess. There are Rapid and Fischer Random matches between world-class GMs, and Opens for Rapid and Random games. And lots more, as you can find out in our Chess Classic Guide...

Mainz on Fire
29.06.2004 From August 4th to 8th, three days after the Chess Meeting in Dortmund, the city of Mainz in Germany will host a new edition of their Chess Classic. This includes a rapid chess match between the world's number two Vishy Anand and number 14 Alexei Shirov, and a "Chess960" match between Peter Svidler and Levon Aronian. Details...

Chess Classic 2003

Anand pulls off hat-trick win at Mainz Chess Classic
18.08.2003 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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