Sofia R5: Another Slav, another draw

by ChessBase
4/30/2010 – The players played a hard fought Slav in game five, repeating the opening from game three. This time, we were able to finally see what is expected of World Championship match play, and what makes it so different from tournaments: a war of opening preparation, thematically played, with incremental attempts to improve on earlier play. Express report.

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World Chess Championship – Game five

Topalov,Veselin (2805) - Anand,Viswanathan (2787) [D17]
Sofia/Bulgaria Sofia/Bulgaria (5), 30.04.2010

1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.Nc3 dxc4 5.a4 Bf5 6.Ne5 e6 7.f3 c5 8.e4 Bg6 9.Be3 cxd4 10.Qxd4 Qxd4 11.Bxd4 Nfd7 12.Nxd7 Nxd7 13.Bxc4 a6 14.Rc1 Rg8 15.h4 h5


In game three, Anand had played 15...h6, and had found himself with a boxed in bishop as well as a stymied kingside after Topalov had continued with h5 and g4. This time Anand doesn't plan to let this happen. 16.Ne2 Bd6 17.Be3 Ne5 18.Nf4 Rc8 19.Bb3 Rxc1+ 20.Bxc1 Ke7 21.Ke2 Rc8 22.Bd2. 22.Rd1 Rc6 23.Be3 Bc5 24.Bd2 f6 25.Nxe6 Rxe6 26.Bxe6 Kxe6 27.f4 Bxe4 28.fxe5 Kxe5 and this game has almost no chances at all for White. – Nigel Short. 22...f6


23.Nxg6+. Obviously Topalov analyzed taking on e6 in depth, but not only does it lead to nothing, it only gives Black chances to swipe the game away from him. For example, if he took it with 23.Bxe6 Black would play 23...Rc2 24.Rb1 Nc4 25.Bxc4 Bxf4 26.Rd1 Rxb2 recovering the pawn with an active game. If White took instead with 23.Nxe6 Anand could follow-up with 23...Bf7 24.Nd4 Bxb3 25.Nxb3 Rc2 26.f4 almost forced (since 26.Rb1? would run into 26...Nc4 27.Kd3 Rxb2 and White is in trouble.) 26...Nc6 27.Rb1 Rc4 and again Black would recover the pawn with an active game. 23...Nxg6 24.g3 Ne5 25.f4 Nc6 26.Bc3 Bb4 27.Bxb4+ Nxb4 28.Rd1 Nc6 29.Rd2 g5 30.Kf2 g4 31.Rc2 Rd8 32.Ke3 Rd6 33.Rc5 Nb4 34.Rc7+ Kd8 35.Rc3 Ke7 36.e5 Rd7 37.exf6+ Kxf6 38.Ke2 Nc6 39.Ke1 Nd4 40.Bd1 a5 41.Rc5 Nf5 42.Rc3 Nd4 43.Rc5


Despite saying he would not offer any draws, Topalov obviously sees nothing better than repeating moves without committing hara-kiri. 43...Nf5 44.Rc3 1/2-1/2. [Click to replay]

Current standing

Photo impressions from Sofia

Before the start of the game – the playing hall in the Military Club

At the start of game five – with a handshake, please note

The "Father of the Euro", Nobel Prize winner Robert Mundell made the first move

Thirteen moves into the game Anand is thinking

Topalov leaves the stage, Anand makes his move

The screen that shields the players from the audience is drawn, and then...

... suddenly the lights went out – all of them, for fifteen minutes, in the entire venue

Later the organisers delivered the following letter:

Mr. Georgios Makropoulos
Supervisor of the FWCM
between the World Champion
V. Anand and V. Topalov

Copy to Mrs. Aruna Anand
Manager of the World Chess Champion V. Anand

Copy to Mr. Silvio Danailov
Manager of Veselin Topalov

Dear Sirs,

The Organizing Committee of the Match for the World Title in Chess between the World Champion V. Anand and V. Topalov would like to apologize for the inconvenience during the fifth game due to cut in the electricity power supply. It was caused by general failure in the electrical system in central Sofia, which affected also the emergency power generators.

We have taken all the needed precautions to prevent from future incidents till the end of the match.

An official statement by the Ministry of Economy and Energetics and the power supplying company CEZ will be presented to you later on.

Organizing Committee
Ph.D. Stefan Sergiev

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