Yet another fighting day in Mainz

8/16/2003 – With hundreds of spectators watching in the hall, and even more on the Playchess.com server, Vishy Anand and Judit Polgar delivered another two nerve-racking games at the Chess Classic in Frankfurt. You will not want to miss the final tomorrow evening. Meanwhile here is today's action.

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Rapid chess: Anand vs Polgar 3:3

The third day of play at the Chess Classic in Mainz brought even more excitement. For the third day in succession Judit Polgar won the first game in their two-game mini-matches. Once again it was a Sicilian, with both sides going for devilishly sharp lines. And once again the ultimate winner looked on the verge of defeat in the middle of the game. Take a look at the following position:

Polgar,J (2718) - Anand,V (2774) [B90]
Rapid Match Mainz GER (5), 16.08.2003

Here Anand was clearly better, and the young commentator during the live broadcast on Playchess.com was analysing the continuation 17...Nxd5 18.exd5 Bxd5. But to the great disappointment of WGM Kateryna Lahno Anand went for the less convincing 17...Qc5? ("Why Veeshy?" she asked in dispair) and slowly let the game slip. At one stage he inserted his queen into the enemy ranks:

This position was reaced when Black played 18...Qc5-f2 (in reply to White's attack 18.Nd4-b3). The black queen had a claustrophobic stay in that white box, and six moves later it gave its life for a rook and a bishop. Two moves later the game was over. Here's how it ended: 19.Rf1 Qg2 20.Nxb6 Nxb6 21.Qe3 Nc4 22.Qa7 Bxe4 23.Qxa6 Rb8 24.Rg1 hxg5 25.Rxg2 Bxg2 26.Bxc4 bxc4 27.Qa4+ and Black resigned 1-0.


13-year-old WGM Kateryna Lahno (Elo 2439) following and annotating the games on the Playchess.com server. Some excerpts of her live analysis is included in the replayable games given below.

Game 6 stuck to the script that is the Mainz Chess Classic. The spectators were glued to their seats, watching the prothagonists on the stage delivered another ruthless battle. It started with yet another sharp Sicilian (maybe we should introduce an abbreviation, YASS, for this in the future) and turned into a somewhat see-saw affair, with chances for both sides. And it was the lady from Budapest who did most of the attacking.

Anand,V (2774) - Polgar,J (2718) [B90]
Rapid Match Mainz GER (6), 16.08.2003

How would you feel as White in the above position, especially when facing one of the most dangerous attacking players around at top-level chess?

Vishy Anand kept his cool, and when Judit played 35...Qc7? he was able to thwart the attack with 36.c4 and launch his own kingside offensive with 36...bxc3 37.Kc2 Rd6 38.Rd1 g6 39.Qg4 Rcd8 40.Rdd3 Bb6 41.Qh4, after which the black position quitely collapsed. Anand took the full point to equalise in this hard-fought match.

Replay and download the games here

The last two games will be played tomorrow at 18.30h und 20.00h German time (= 17:30 and 19:00 London and 12:30 and 2:00 p.m. New York). You can follow them live on our Playchess.com server


Chess960: Leko vs Svidler 3:3

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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