Anand braces for Shamkir Chess tournament

Published on April 17, 2015 16:38:21 PM
Shamkir (Azerbaijan): Five-time world champion Viswanathan Anand is gearing up for the summit clash against incumbent Magnus Carlsen of Norway in the first round of Shamkir Chess, here.

In what is expected to keep the chess buffs across the globe glued to their computer screens, the clash of the titans will be held in the memory of Vugar Gashimov.

Drawing number ‘4’ in the drawing of lots, Anand will not only have the advantage of playing white in the first game but the Indian ace will also get to play five games in all with white pieces in the 10-player, nine-rounds, round-robin tournament.

While the white pieces are good news, Anand would probably want to forget the last encounter against Carlsen at the Grenke Chess Classic earlier this year. Playing white then, Anand suffered a defeat after attaining a better position first and then missing out on a draw.

To re-enter the 2800 ELO rating club from here, Indian chess Wizard will need five whites. Anand, who is seeded third, will need six points to break the magic barrier another time. For the records, Anand will play white against Anish Giri of Holland, Wesley So of United States, Michael Adams of England and Shakhriyar Mamedyarov of Azerbaijan.

Carlsen said he was happy to be here.

"It is great to be back. I remember the first tournament was very well organised and as a chess player I appreciate the way we are treated here," said Carlsen on his impressions about the city.