Wednesday 16 January 2013

A game for the ages

Over the last few years Viswanathan Anand has had a middling tournament career at best. This is understandable, as his major focus has been on winning, and then retaining, the World Championship title. As a result, his tournament games seemed to lack the aggression he showed earlier in his career, provoking facetious comments after almost every game that he was 'hiding his opening preparation'.
So when he won his round 3 game in the Tata Steel tournament against Fabiano Caruana, there were online murmurings that  the 'real' Anand was back. 'Wait and see' was the response from other commentators, but it looks like they didn't have to wait long. His round 4 win over Lev Aronian was a thing of beauty, and although it is less the 24 hours since the game was played, it is already being labelled a modern masterpiece.
Anand played the currently popular Semi-Slav, and more significantly, used a line that had been prepared for his match against Gelfand. He went onto the attack, seemingly ignoring Aronian's defensive set up, and at one point he had three pieces hanging. Aronian did his best to defend, but a few well calculated moves was all it took for Anand to complete the rout.

Aronian,Levon - Anand,Viswanathan [D47]
75th Tata Steel GpA Wijk aan Zee NED (4.5), 15.01.2013

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