Posted on: May 20, 2013

Norway Chess 2013: Viswanathan Anand confidently outwitted Jon Ludvig Hammer to crash into the joint second spot

By Antara Das

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Norway Chess 2013: Viswanathan Anand confidently outwitted Jon Ludvig Hammer to crash into the joint second spot

World champion Viswanathan Anand confidently outwitted Jon Ludvig Hammer of Norway to crash into the joint second spot in the Norway Chess 2013 super tournament at Sandnes in Norway.

This particular victory was crucial for Anand as it brought him within striking distance of winning the super tournament. Finally, the Indian ace will require a victory against Wang Hao of China in the last round.

Sprawling the leader Sergey Karjakin of Russia by one and half points and second placed World no.1 Magnus Carlsen of Norway by a full point with two rounds yet to go, Anand relished the laurels of victory as both Karjakin and Magnus lost to Peter Svidler of Russia and Wang Hao of China respectively in the penultimate round.

It was proved again that the atmosphere is not suitable to sole leaders this season. Sergey Karjakin of Russian seemed to be running away with everything after the end of the fourth round but still one round left; the Russian has to fight it out for the title.

Losing to compatriot Peter Svidler, Karjakin was fortunate enough to be still in sole lead as Carlsen also lost but the tide has now moved in favor of the Indian ace with two wins in line.

Regarding other matches of the day, Veselin Topalov of Bulgaria drew with Levon Aronian of Armenia. Hikaru Nakamura of America made some amends at the expense of Teimour Radjabov of Azerbaijan. Karjakin still remains at half point on 5.5 points ahead of Anand and Carlsen  On the other side, Nakamura, Aronian and Svidler share the fourth position on 4.5 points apiece. Topalov and Wang Hao stays at joint seventh on 3.5 points per head. Lastly, Teimour Radjabov who, in turn, is a full point holder stays ahead of last placed Hammer.

In fact, the day belonged to Anand as apart from his own win; he obtained the results of other matches in his favor. With only one round remaining, the world champion will be anticipating a victory against Wang Hao as both Karjakin and Carlsen have hard draws against Topalov and Aronian respectively.

Caution will play a crucial role as Anand had lost to Wang Hao in the last round of Tata Steel chess tournament in January this year. Anand did many complicated things right away in his game against Hammer. The Indian ace sacrificed as many as three pawns for an attack against black king. The analyzing computer suggested multiple defenses for the Norwegian but for the naked eye it was an impossible situation to come to terms with such instability on board. Eventually, Hammer lost a rook for a minor piece and walked in to the defeat at the end of the game in no time. Anand concluded the formalities in a copybook style.

Karjakin was overpowered by Svidler out of a closed Ruy Lopez arising out of a Berlin defense. The stress got on to Karjakin after losing two minor pieces for a rook while the Bishop pair proved worthy for Svidler who calculated accurately.

Wang Hao controlled the game what seemed like a draw-able rook and pawns endgame for Carlsen despite being a pawn less. However the World No.1 took a wrong path that paved the way for a forced victory for the Chinese.

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