Corsica Masters: MVL beats Anand in final

by Priyadarshan Banjan
11/2/2016 – The cover picture to the left best describes what happened in the Sunday clash between MVL and Anand. It was a fighting match to be fair. Anand sacrificed his queen in the first game with the black pieces but had to build a fortress in the end to secure a draw. He might have fancied his chances of pushing with white against MVL. But the Frenchman is popular all over the world for his expertise in Sicilian Najdorf. The audience were praying for the Najdorf to appear and the Frenchman obliged.

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Both Anand and MVL had waltzed their way to the Finals

The games in progress

The theater was a full house of 500 spectators to watch the legend and the legend in the making

And Vishy treated the spectators to some lip-smacking chess in a Reversed-Gruenfeld. He sacrificed his queen out of the opening in the first game with black!

MVL - Vishy Anand (Game One)

[Event "20 ans"] [Site "?"] [Date "2016.10.30"] [Round "?"] [White "Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime"] [Black "Anand, Viswanathan"] [Result "1/2-1/2"] [ECO "A08"] [WhiteElo "2795"] [BlackElo "2802"] [PlyCount "97"] [EventDate "2016.??.??"] [TimeControl "900+3"] [WhiteClock "0:01:53"] [BlackClock "0:04:20"] 1. Nf3 {0} d5 {2} 2. g3 {0} c5 {1} 3. Bg2 {2} Nc6 {2} 4. d4 {31} Nf6 {2} 5. O-O {10} cxd4 {1} 6. Nxd4 {2} e5 {2} 7. Nxc6 {2} bxc6 {1 Black has reached a reversed-Gruenfeld.} 8. c4 {2} Be6 {3 This is not the first time Anand has reached here. The first instance was also a rapid game, in Zurich in February 2016, against Nakamura. The second time he reached here was against MVL himself, at the GCT Blitz in Leuven in June 2016!} 9. Qa4 {51} (9. Bg5 Rc8 10. Qa4 Qd7 11. Bxf6 gxf6 12. e3 d4 13. exd4 exd4 14. c5 Bxc5 15. Rc1 Qe7 16. Bxc6+ Kf8 17. Nd2 Kg7 18. Qb5 Bb6 19. Qd3 Rc7 20. Be4 Rhc8 21. Rxc7 Rxc7 22. Rd1 Qc5 23. Nb3 Qe5 24. Nd2 f5 25. Bg2 Qc5 26. b3 Qc2 27. Nc4 Qxd3 28. Rxd3 Bxc4 29. bxc4 Rxc4 30. Bd5 Rc3 {1/2-1/2 (30) Nakamura,H (2787)-Anand,V (2784) Zuerich 2016}) 9... Qd7 {2} 10. Rd1 {2} Rc8 {5 Getting out of the diagonal} (10... Bc5 11. Nc3 $14) 11. Nc3 {61} (11. Nd2 Bd6 12. e4 d4 13. Qc2 c5 14. Nf3 h6 15. Ne1 O-O 16. Nd3 Nh7 17. f4 exf4 18. gxf4 f5 19. e5 Be7 20. b3 Kh8 21. Qe2 Qe8 22. Bd2 g5 23. Bd5 Qf7 24. Bxe6 Qxe6 25. Qh5 Rg8 26. Qf3 Rcd8 27. Kh1 g4 28. Qg2 h5 29. Be1 h4 30. Kg1 Nf8 31. Rd2 Qh6 32. Re2 Ne6 33. Bg3 hxg3 34. hxg3 Rg7 35. Kf2 Rh7 36. Rg1 Kg8 37. Ke1 Kf7 38. Kd2 Rdh8 39. Qd5 Rd8 40. Qb7 Qf8 41. Kc2 Qe8 42. Rh1 Qh8 43. Ree1 Rh3 44. Qg2 Qh5 45. Nf2 Rh8 46. Nxh3 gxh3 47. Qe2 Qg4 48. Qd3 h2 49. Re2 Nxf4 50. gxf4 Rh3 51. e6+ Ke8 {0-1 (51) Vachier Lagrave,M (2789)-Anand,V (2770) Leuven 2016}) 11... d4 {28} 12. e3 {1} Be7 {15} 13. exd4 {95} exd4 {2} 14. c5 {119} ({Because otherwise} 14. Be3 c5 $15) 14... Bxc5 {5} 15. Be3 {1} dxe3 $1 {6 sacrificing the Queen for a piece, two pawns and the rook.} 16. Rxd7 {1} exf2+ {2} 17. Kh1 {1} Kxd7 {5} 18. Rd1+ {29} Ke7 {39} 19. Qa5 {5} Bb6 {28} 20. Qa3+ {63} c5 {4} 21. Rf1 {24} Rhd8 {26 Black's choice of moves -- ...Rd8, Kf8, Kg8, getting out of the pin is remarkable.} 22. Rxf2 {27} Kf8 {44} 23. Na4 {64} Kg8 {9} 24. Nxb6 {12} axb6 {1} 25. h3 {12} h6 {34} 26. Qa6 {13} Rd6 {36} 27. a3 {14} Rcd8 {45} 28. Qe2 {50} c4 {21} (28... Nd5 29. Kh2 Ne7 30. Qe1 (30. g4 Nc6 31. Bxc6 Rxc6 32. Kg3) 30... Nc6 31. Qc3 Nd4 $11) 29. Kh2 {12} Rd3 {8} 30. Qe1 {19} b5 {146} 31. Qe5 {12} Bd5 {30} 32. Bxd5 {6} R8xd5 {5} 33. Qf4 {57} c3 {64} 34. bxc3 {7} Rxc3 {1} 35. a4 {25} bxa4 {18} 36. Qxa4 { 16} Rdd3 {14} 37. Rg2 {3} g6 {19} 38. Qf4 {7} Rf3 {25} 39. Qxh6 {26} Nh5 {41} 40. Rd2 {18} Rc8 {14} 41. Rg2 {3} Rxg3 {19} 42. Rxg3 {4} Nxg3 {0} 43. Kxg3 {2} Rc5 {1} 44. Qe3 {4} Rf5 {2 Black has built a fortress.} 45. h4 {2} Rh5 {1} 46. Qf4 {3} Rf5 {1} 47. Qe3 {2} Rh5 {2} 48. Qf4 {11} Rf5 {2} 49. Qe3 {1} 1/2-1/2

MVL has a reputation for his understanding of the Sicilian Najdorf. The first game ended in a draw, and the spectators were praying for Vishy to open with 1.e4

All of them wanted to see MVL's Najdorf in action! And the Frenchman played to the gallery

Vishy Anand - MVL (Game Two)

[Event "20 ans"] [Site "?"] [Date "2016.10.30"] [Round "?"] [White "Anand, Viswanathan"] [Black "Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "B90"] [WhiteElo "2802"] [BlackElo "2795"] [PlyCount "58"] [EventDate "2016.??.??"] [TimeControl "900+3"] [WhiteClock "0:02:45"] [BlackClock "0:05:04"] 1. e4 {0} c5 {0} 2. Nf3 {0} d6 {0} 3. d4 {1} cxd4 {0} 4. Nxd4 {1} Nf6 {1} 5. Nc3 {1} a6 {1} 6. Nb3 {2 An interesting line, that was tried by Nakamura against MVL at Leuven. MVL won an instructive game.} Nc6 {16} (6... g6 { was MVL's choice against Naka.}) 7. Be3 {5} g6 {30} 8. Nd5 {43} Nxd5 {2} (8... Nxe4 9. Bb6 $18) 9. exd5 {2} Ne5 {1} 10. Bd4 {49} Bh6 {3} 11. Be2 {3} O-O {10} 12. O-O {3} b5 {19} 13. a4 {22} b4 {37} 14. c3 {37} Bb7 {23} 15. cxb4 {12 White decides to trade d5 for b4. The bishop went on to win the game for Black. } Bxd5 {6} 16. Na5 {21} e6 {16} 17. Ra3 {89 This is the turning point.} (17. f4 Nc6 18. Nxc6 Bxc6 19. b5 axb5 20. Bxb5 $11) 17... Rb8 $1 {13} 18. Bc3 {26 The rook on a3 looks dumb.} (18. Bxa6 Rxb4 19. Nb3 Nf3+ $1 20. gxf3 Qg5+ 21. Kh1 Qh5 $19) 18... Qh4 {21} 19. Be1 {146} Bf4 {226} 20. Rh3 {39} (20. g3 Qh3 21. f3 Ng4 $19 22. Rf2 Nxf2 23. Bxf2 Be5 $19) 20... Qg5 {2} 21. Rg3 {15} Qf5 {100} 22. Bxa6 {51} Bxg3 {2} 23. fxg3 {24} Qe4 {1} 24. Rf2 {190} Rxb4 $1 {3 Precise!} 25. Re2 {2} (25. Bxb4 Qxb4 26. Qd2 Qxd2 27. Rxd2 Ra8 {wins a piece.}) 25... Rd4 $19 {69} 26. Qc1 {24} Nf3+ $1 {44} 27. gxf3 {8} Qxf3 {1} 28. Qc3 {6} Qh1+ {6} 29. Kf2 {0} e5 {30} (29... Qg2+ 30. Ke3 Qf3+ 31. Kxd4 e5+ 32. Rxe5 $1 dxe5+ 33. Kc5 $16 {and White gets away!}) 0-1

The media was all praise for their hero as he beat the five-time world champion 1.5-0.5 in the Finals to become the 2016 Corsican Masters champion.

His Najdorf arm is unreal! Follow @AntonSquaredMe here for more such photoshopped images.

Links

The games are being broadcast live on the official web site and on the chess server Playchess.com. If you are not a member you can download a free Playchess client there and get immediate access. You can also use ChessBase 13 or any of our Fritz compatible chess programs.



Priyadarshan Banjan is a 23-year-old club player from India. He works as an editor for ChessBase News and ChessBase India. He is a chess fanatic and an avid fan of Vishy Anand. He also maintains a blog on a variety of topics.
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X iLeon aka DMG X iLeon aka DMG 11/4/2016 04:59
Wow, at times it feels like MVL's Najdorf is more a work of art than concrete rumblings through the exponential jungle. I played through it while listening to Bach's Ciaconna and I had an almost mystical experience! ;)
Camembert Camembert 11/4/2016 02:21
Ihanks to MVL's Coach, Vladimir Tukmakov !
dhruvraj28 dhruvraj28 11/3/2016 11:42
hi i thoughtt vishy would win
jackyessir jackyessir 11/3/2016 12:53
I am absolutely delighted to learn that MVL has acceded my indispensable and exponential advice to play with his unique specialty the Najdorf against the Indian legend at the Corsican final match. Look at the brilliancy, the masterful moves and awesome skill, talent, and repertoire MVL has shown. He truly deserves to win that match on that occassion. Many congratulations MVL. Tony from the Isle of Man. (Hope you come to the Isle of Man International Chess Tournament Chess.com next year 2017).
psamant psamant 11/3/2016 10:27
Wow... what a great second game. Even the final move, ...e5 was deep calculation to close the trap.
jsaldea12 jsaldea12 11/3/2016 09:15
Congrats MVL. Good news for chess: Bill Gates will grace the Carlsen vs. Karjakin world chess tournament. So Bill Gate is interested in Chess!!! A VERY POTENTIAL SPONSOR!!
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