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Magnus winning was only a matter of time. I fear for Vishy now.
MC is now 1/7 to win title.
I think Game 5 yesterday game marked the point where Carlsen moved ahead on the balance of the play. I don’t understand Anand’s 16…Ke7 at all, spurning the two active bishop moves Bb6 and Bg5 that threaten Bxe3+. He plays Bb6 tow moves later anyway, when W has c5 in reply. He seemed to be in a passive mindset but when he got his passive position I thought he defended and counterattacked superbly for the rest of the session until move 45. It’s hard not to be affected by that annoying little computer number on the screen that was showing 0, so I thought he had got there - but actually, Anand had quite a difficult choice as to which side to go for. 45 … Ra1 and the a-pawn was the ‘zero’ evaluation and going to the K side with Rc1+ and Rg1 was the wrong choice.

He seemed to tire in that second session and even almost at the end could have gone down to Q v R which is supposed not to be easy these days. In the position after 57 a7 White’s main winning plan seems to be to push his h pawn to deflect the Black King then move the W king up to support the a-pawn.

Anand again 'chose poorly' with 57 ... Kc5 (after which it looks like he can't stop both of the pawns). However with the simple 57 … Ra4 Black makes this plan a lot harder. The WK goes round to the Q side the long way, via d4 (once the BK is on the K side looking after that h-pawn) and with the R on c7 plays Kc5 and Kb6 after which because of the P on a7 W can capture the c-pawn with the rook. However that’s not quite the end of it as B can take the R and go into R v Q – because whites h-pawn then falls to the combined attentions of the B R+K. Maybe this Q v R ending is regarded as easy to win by the GMs? I personally think it’s very hard if you don’t know it, and quite hard if you do. Anyone got any more on this?

Or perhaps Anand had just had enough of the game.

[pgn]1. c4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 c6 4. e4 dxe4 5. Nxe4 Bb4+ 6. Nc3 c5 7. a3 Ba5 8. Nf3 Nf6 9. Be3 Nc6 10. Qd3 cxd4 11. Nxd4 Ng4 12. O-O-O Nxe3 13. fxe3 Bc7 14. Nxc6 bxc6 15. Qxd8+ Bxd8 16. Be2 Ke7 17. Bf3 Bd7 18. Ne4 Bb6 19. c5 f5 20. cxb6 fxe4 21. b7 Rab8 22. Bxe4 Rxb7 23. Rhf1 Rb5 24. Rf4 g5 25. Rf3 h5 26. Rdf1 Be8 27. Bc2 Rc5 28. Rf6 h4 29. e4 a5 30. Kd2 Rb5 31. b3 Bh5 32. Kc3 Rc5+ 33. Kb2 Rd8 34. R1f2 Rd4 35. Rh6 Bd1 36. Bb1 Rb5 37. Kc3 c5 38. Rb2 e5 39. Rg6 a4 40. Rxg5 Rxb3+ 41. Rxb3 Bxb3 42. Rxe5+ Kd6 43. Rh5 Rd1 44. e5+ Kd5 45. Bh7 Rc1+ 46. Kb2 Rg1 47. Bg8+ Kc6 48. Rh6+ Kd7 49. Bxb3 axb3 50. Kxb3 Rxg2 51. Rxh4 Ke6 52. a4 Kxe5 53. a5 Kd6 54. Rh7 Kd5 55. a6 c4+ 56. Kc3 Ra2 57. a7[/pgn]
Anand was clearly heart broken with today's loss. Think it's curtains now. Would be one of the most incredible comebacks in Chess history if Anand managed to retain his WC title from here. Carlsen is clearly a level above.
Andrew McHarg Wrote:Anand was clearly heart broken with today's loss. Think it's curtains now. Would be one of the most incredible comebacks in Chess history if Anand managed to retain his WC title from here. Carlsen is clearly a level above.

He certainly wasn't a happy man at the press conference, understandably.

His endgame play has been pretty poor these last 2 games though hasn't it? I don't even mean relative to Carlsen's, which is generally excellent - he just isn't seeing things clearly in the 5th and 6th hour of play.

I can't see him getting back into the match now unless Carlsen gets very, very sloppy in the openings (not completely out of the question!)
It would be nice to see Anand win the next two games, it would certainly make for an interesting finish.
Andrew McHarg Wrote:Anand was clearly heart broken with today's loss. Think it's curtains now.

I tend to agree. On paper he would still have some kind of a chance but only six games to do it, sadly, and Carlsen isn’t allowing him much chance to mix it. Anand's confidence must be shattered at not holding today’s position.

I couldn’t understand Anand’s 43 h4-h5 plan. I think W draws fairly easily by keeping the R on the 6th rank. You wouldn’t expect Black to be able to queen his f-pawn though! Carlsen took his chance brilliantly and out-calculated him.

Think this was it, before White's 43 h4

[pos]8/1r3pk1/3R2pp/1p6/2p5/2P4P/1P4PK/8 w - - 4 3[/pos]

Steinitz came from 4-1 down to beat Zukertort 10-5 over 20 games (bit of a feat, that!). Draws seemed harder then…

In 1935 Euwe won from 3 down against Alekhine, in fact going 2 down again after drawing level, before finally winning (30 games played)

Karpov levelled from 3 down against Kasparov in 86 with 8 games left in a 24 game match, only to lose by the odd game.

Topalov came back from losing the first two against Kramnik to tie their (12-game) match, only to lose the tie break

Andrew is probably right it would make history if Anand were to draw level - I don't know of anyone who has leveled from 2 down with only 6 games left. Shame about the short 12 game format, which encourages the player in the lead to just sit on it.
The thing is though, I think Carlsen is just clearly a stronger player than Anand. His hunger and drive to win just grinds his opponents down. If anything; Carlsen looks more likely to extend his lead than Anand does to close the gap. To be honest though, Anand's reign had to come to an end at some point and I can't imagine anyone more deserving of acquiring it than Carlsen, given how much he has dominated the Chess scene in recent years. Not that it's definitely over yet, but I can't see Carlsen messing this advantage up.
Korchnoi nearly pulled off an incredible comeback v Karpov (the yoghurt counter gambit match) when 5-1 down in the first to win six event in the Phillipines. Got it back to 5-5 only to lose the next game. Plenty of good off the board action apart from the yoghurt including Korchnoi (who had just defected) wanting to play with a flag emblazoned with "I escaped" to Karpov's team parapsychologist guy, Dr Zuchort I think he was called, sitting in the front row staring at Korchnoi for the entire games. Korchnoi's team led by Ray Keene objected to the "doctor" and he was moved back a few rows, cue Korchnoi comeback. Come the final game, he appeared on the front row again. Coincidence surely? Gamesmanship definitely.

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