Anand finishes joint sixth in Tal Memorial
Posted on: 10:06 PM IST Nov 26, 2011
Moscow: Viswanathan Anand finished tied sixth after signing peace with Boris Gelfand of Israel in the ninth and final round of the Tal Memorial Chess tournament on Saturday.
This was a rare result for the world champion, who played out all draws in the strongest tournament of the year featuring a 10-player double round-robin tournament.
Playing with black pieces against his next World Championship challenger Gelfand, Anand drew in 29 moves in Queens' Gambit Declined. The two players are set to play a long match in May 2012 and none of them wanted to show any cards for obvious reasons.
Magnus Carlsen of Norway again showed his famous grit and determination to beat Hikaru Nakamura of United States and finish tied first along with Levon Aronian of Armenia on 5.5 points after the final round.
Carlsen was at his devastating best with black pieces. Winning a pawn in a Catalan opening, the Norwegian did not mind a long grind in the end game and romped home easily. As Carlsen had played more black games in the tournament, his tie-break was better and the Norwegian added another feather to his already-bulging cap.
It turned out to be a three-way tie for the third place, which was shared by Sergey Karjakin and Ian Nepomniachtchi of Russia and Vassily Ivanchuk of Ukraine, who all finished on 5 points.
World Cup winner Peter Svidler of Russia and Anand tied for the sixth spot on 4.5 points each, and the former scored a fine victory over compatriot Vladimir Kramnik in the final round game.
Kramnik and Gelfand shared the third spot on 3.5 points while Nakamura finished a disappointing last after being out-of-form for the major part of the tournament.
Overnight leader Armenia's Levon Aronian was pushed to the wall by Nepomniachtchi, who tried his best. The battle lasted 85 moves and Aronian showed great resistance.
Svidler won as Kramnik tried to reach an even score at all costs. To the credit of the former, his technique held him in good stead.