Friday, 11 May 2012

The Ear-Reddening Move

The first game of the 2012 World Championship match between Viswanathan Anand and Boris Gelfand is still going on as I type this. It opened with a very sharp line of the Gruenfeld, a line that had at least one interesting effect.
In the Jpanase game of Go there is a story about the 'Ear-Reddening Move'. It concerned a game between master players Shusaku and Gennan. During the game Shusaku played a move of such power that Gennan's ears began to turn red after he realised the strength of his opponents position.
A similar effect seemed to occur soon after the start of the Anand Gelfand game. The opening moves were 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 d5 4.Nf3 Bg7 5.cxd Nxd5 6.e4 Nxc3 7.bxc3 c5 8.Bb5+ Nc6 Now Anand paused for a moment and then played 9.d5 Gelfand looked at the position for a while, and then his face turned bright red. Realising he could not take on c3, Gelfand eventually found 9. ... Qa5 and his face returned to a more natural colour.
The game has now passed move 20 and Gelfand looks like he has more than equalised the position. If you are ready this soon after I typed it you can catch the rest of the game, including live video coverage and commentary at

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