28 Jul 2012
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Kasparov's words affected my game in Moscow, says Anand
PTI | Jul 21, 2012, 05.17PM IST
MUMBAI: Terming his fifth world championship title as the most difficult one to achieve, chess wizard Viswanathan Anand admitted that veteran Russian player Garry Kasparov's mind games did affect him during his title defence in Moscow in May.
"Normally I try not to read newspapers or websites on chess precisely for this reason. You might be affected by some comment or other. Unfortunately, in press conferences, you are asked pointed questions and then you try to find about things you tried not to read about. Still I think you try not to lose sight," Anand said on Saturday.
"It is important to know the main opponent is (Boris) Gelfand and not Kasparov. It is important to focus on the match...but this time it was there in the background and it was impossible to shut it out," said the 42-year-old five-time world champion at a promotional event organised by NIIT.
Former world champion Kasparov controversially remarked during the tournament that Anand should have retired from the game like he himself had done and that the Indian had lost motivation and had slid downhill over the last few years.
After clinching the crown, the Indian ace had retorted that Kasparov was regretting his retirement from the game.
"We were asked about his remarks. He is the man who regrets leaving chess. He misses the attention he got in chess, somehow he wants to be there. May be he should play again," Anand had said on his return home in June.
"The match against (Vladimir) Kramnik finished in 11 games. The match against (Veselin) Topalov finished in 12 games. Against, Gelfand it went past 12 games.
"The intensity was higher, otherwise most matches are similar. I would say this was my most difficult one as it went all the way to the tie breaks," Anand observed.
Anand exuded confidence about the current crop of chess players and said they just need a good break to make their mark.
"We have a lot of good players and it is happy to see that in both men and women. We have excellent juniors, they do well in world championships for their age group. For instance Murali Karthikeyan is a world under-12 champion. I think if you have enough youngsters, eventually the results will follow.
"People like Sasikaran (Krishnan) or P Harikrishna and (Surya Shekhar) Ganguly are working very hard and they are very close. If they get the right break somewhere it could happen. In women, Koneru Humpy has played very well. So we are not very far off," he said.
The veteran, meanwhile, informed that he opted out of the Chess Olympiad in Turkey, scheduled from August 27 to December 10, as he did not enjoy the format.
"I have problems with the format. On top of that, there are quite some unpleasant rules which they have these days. They have zero tolerance rules with terms of timing...the fact that you lose a game if you are one second late.
"These kinds of rules mean many players have to get into the hall an hour in advance. There are many things, which I think are negative...," he said.
On his schedule this year, Anand said he will be playing in Brazil and Bilbao, Spain in September and October, adding that in December he was set to play in London and in January, 2013 he would be competing at the Tata Steel event at Holland.
Anand, who first turned Grandmaster in 1987, said it was good to see many GMs emerging these days.
"The Grandmaster title average age is getting younger and the world record is somewhere at 12 years. I was the youngest Grandmaster, but not the title recipient, at 18 years. Now it has dropped 6 years from that. Definitely the scene is looking good.
"I think the average player today is stronger than the average player 20 years ago. More people are playing and more people have access to more tools. The average depth in chess is higher. More people are getting GM title because the level is increasing. The players are stronger," he said.
He, however, added that he hasn't faced any hurdles in his distinguished career.
"I wouldn't say I faced any special road block. From 2001-2005, there were no proper World Championships in which I could play. That in a way was a boon because for a few years I could concentrate on playing tournaments and getting good results.
"And when the World Championships came back, I was hungry again. I wouldn't say I faced major road blocks," he said.
The chess ace further said that he engages in physical sports after his matches to relax.
"I find that after many matches, it is nice to do something physical just to get rid of the strain. It works in the opposite direction as well. People in contact sports play chess to disconnect themselves. For example, the Klitschko brothers (from Ukraine) play chess after their (boxing) bouts," he pointed out.
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Standings after 15 rounds
|10||1||GM||Le, Quang Liem||VIE||2693||7.0|
Official website: http://www.worldchess.kz/en/online/blitz_standings
Here are the 16 players participating in the 2012 World Blitz Championship. Can Magnus Carlsen recuperate after the disastrous ending in the World Rapid Championship?
|13||Le, Quang Liem||GM||VIE||2693|
Official website: http://www.worldchess.kz/en/
8 Jul 2012
7 Jul 2012
Levon Aronian joins Carlsen and Anand in London Chess Classic
It’s shaping up to be the bumper event of the year, as the World No.2, Levon Aronian, of Armenia, joins World No 1 Magnus Carlsen and World Champion Vishy Anand in becoming the third player this week to confirm his invitation for the 4th London Chess Classic, at Kensington Olympia, 1-10 December, 2012.
At 29 Aronian is in his lifetime best form and has already won a major event this year ahead of Carlsen, as he took the Tata Steel title back in January. The chess public increasingly views the real struggle for chess supremacy as Aronian vs Carlsen, and the ever-popular Armenian will be looking to end the year as he started it by winning the London Chess Classic ahead of his rival.
In Armenia, chess rules above all other sports, and Aronian, who is a national hero with Beckham-like status with young girls and aspiring chess players often chasing him for photos and autographs, is a previous winner of the sportsman of the year title. Armenia now also has chess being taught as a compulsory subject in all primary schools.
Aronian is easygoing and known to have a wickedly wry sense of humour. But make no mistake that when the battle starts over the board, he is fiercely competitive and is arguably the most skilled and creative player during the middle phase of games.
“Levon likes his money,” as the Elton John/Bernie Taupin hit goes, and at the London Chess Classic this particular Levon will be looking not only to take the prize money for first place but also the rating points that come with it.
Press release from the official website
6 Jul 2012
5 Jul 2012
2 Jul 2012
Chess is about to become a brand — with a slogan
Andrew Paulson, an Illinois-born entrepreneur who struck it big in the Russian media market, has bought the rights to the next world championship and promised a $6 million prize fund for related tournaments.
He said he struck the deal with world chess federation head Kirsan Ilyumzhinov after a chance meeting in Russia.
Paulson has also created a vehicle, World Chess, to promote the game. He hired a design firm to create an ad slogan — “The Best Mind Wins” — as well as a p.r. firm, and is looking for big-bucks co-sponsors.
One thing he wants to change is the small-bore approach that put championship-related events in Podunks like Elista, Russia.
In the first year of World Chess, tournaments are expected to be held in London, Berlin, Moscow, Lisbon, Madrid and Paris. He also wants live chess featured on TV, as well as via smartphones and iPads.
Paulson has competed in US Chess Federation events but he didn’t make the Business Insider.com list of 24 executives who excel at chess.
Among the USCF-rated Experts are hedge-fund managers Peter Thiel and Boaz Weinstein, Pegasystems CEO Alan Trefler and Powerset co-founder Barney Pell.
Read more: http://www.nypost.com