World Chess Championship 2013 Viswanathan Anand vs Magnus Carlsen at Chennai Hyatt Regency: world chess championship chennai 2013

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Showing posts with label world chess championship chennai 2013. Show all posts
Showing posts with label world chess championship chennai 2013. Show all posts

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

You need to have that Absolute Belief that You're the Best: World No. 1 Magnus Carlsen

Posted by World Chess Championship 2013 News Blog Tuesday, September 3, 2013
At the age of 22, Norwegian Grandmaster Magnus Carlsen, is the no. 1 ranked chess player in the world. In February, Carlsen peaked with an Elo rating of 2872—the highest ever—as administered by the World Chess Federation (FIDE), the sport’s governing body. Second on the all-time list is Carlsen’s ex-coach, Russian Garry Kasparov, who became the youngest world champion at 22 in 1985 and held the title for fifteen years; Kasparov retired in 2005 and has since become an outspoken human rights activist, and one who has clashed often with Russian President Vladimir Putin. He remains very involved with chess, which at the moment means being very interested in Magnus Carlsen. “[He] conserves the mystique of chess at a time when every CPU-enhanced fan thinks the game is easy,” Kasparov says. “If he can rekindle the world’s fascination with the royal game, we will soon be living in the Carlsen Era.”

But a ranking in chess does not a world champion make. That title belongs to current world no. 8 Viswanathan “Vishy” Anand, 43, a five-time victor who has safeguarded his undisputed throne since 2007 (his first win came in 2000 but the title was split). And though it took a real stroke of luck, Carlsen has earned the right to stake his claim to outright chess sovereignty this November in India at the 2013 World Chess Championship versus Anand.

There’s something special about this one, even by world championship standards. For one, it’s Magnus’ first title shot, which has manifested as the most significant peak to Carlsen’s protracted and well-managed marketing crescendo, a triumph in both performance and image. Recall if you can or will a pre-2011 Lebron: a high-flying stat-sheet filler who’d earn multiple MVP’s before winning a kiss with a sweaty, champagne-soaked Larry O’Brien Trophy, and then another. That’s Magnus, and Anand, in this equation, is something like this year’s San Antonio Spurs.

For Anand, whose play has steadily declined, this championship defense may be part swan song, part torch passing. He will stage his title defense against Carlsen in Chennai—the very place Anand calls home. The narrative is tidy enough; the question is how it will end. What’s clear is that Carlsen may yet be Anand’s most formidable—and bold—challenger. In April, on Charlie Rose, Carlsen said: “You need to have that edge, you need to have that confidence, you need to have that absolute belief that you’re the best and that you’ll win every time. It’s just a feeling I had...[that] I’m probably going to be the best at some point.”

Should Carlsen prove prescient and win in November, he’d become the first chess player from the “West” to win the world championship since American Bobby Fischer defeated Russian Boris Spassky in Reykjavik in 1972, which ended 24 straight years of Soviet chess dominance. At that time, Fischer’s quirky mega-ego, manipulative posturing in a press corps hungry for Cold War scandal, and brilliance on the board, proved the locomotive force chess needed to gain the international spotlight.

Fischer, of course, would go on to become one of chess’ foremost what-if men, never defending his crown; he’d wander Europe and Asia for decades, showing up every now and again to offer vitriol against, among other subjects, Jews and the U.S. (famously during 9/11). He’d die of Kidney failure in Iceland in 2008. Being the next Bobby Fischer is not an uncomplicated aspiration.


Perhaps aware of Fischer’s reputation, Carlsen, during a comedic interview with Rainn Wilson, said, “I’m only 21 years old so give me some time to develop the crazy.” But Carlsen, besides being handsome and well-spoken, appears to have his head on straight, and is held fast by the type of close-knit familial and managerial support that eluded Fischer. Add it up and Carlsen, whose first name means “the great,” represents chess’ best chance is over 40 years to return to international mindshare without a fastidious, political spectacle—and instead with positional, hard-nosed chess playing.

The first part—the well-adjusted bit, the charisma—makes him interesting to talk to. The second part—the generational brilliance and maturity—makes him worth listening to.

JZ: You were recently on a trip to New York City. Tell me some of the highlights.

Carlsen: I had a couple of really good burgers.

JZ: What do you take on your hamburgers? Cheese, bacon...?

Carlsen: Yeah – everything that’s good and unhealthy.

JZ: I saw on Twitter that you were wearing a Shaquille O’Neal jersey at a Celtics game [in February]. Is that your favorite basketball player?

Carlsen: [He’s] one of my favorites. I didn’t really start following until a few years ago, and when he was playing with the Celtics. I thought this is probably going to be his last season so it’s about time to get a jersey.

JZ: I happen to be from Boston, and you were right. That was the end of his [playing] career.

Carlsen: I thought that in general the atmosphere in Boston was absolutely amazing, especially when they beat the Lakers, of course. At one point in the third quarter they made a three-pointer and then Jeff Green made a block and a dunk at the other end. The building was just ecstatic at that point. And also the next game I saw in Boston, where the Celtics beat the Bulls, which was absolutely brutal offensively for three quarters and then they somehow ground it out in the fourth. That was amazing.

JZ: How did that compare with Madison Square Garden?
Carlsen: I think probably the New York fans are a little bit more spoiled in a way. You can feel the same thing in football or soccer—that for the best teams in Spain and England, for instance, the public... they’re not really going to cheer at all when they play against bad teams unless they do something spectacular. Even if they’re winning by a few goals they’ll probably just say, “nah.” That’s normal and they’re not excited about it. Maybe it’s a little bit of the same in New York, although they’re obviously not that used to winning there. They’re used to big stages and so on. It takes a little bit more to excite them.

JZ: Speaking of the big stage: you’ve got the world championship in November. What are you doing to prepare for that match?

Carlsen: Well, right now I’m in the process of contacting people, finding out who will be helping me during the match. And probably there will be two training sessions—one at the end of July [or] at the start of August for two, two and a half weeks, and then another one later probably in late October.

JZ: What are these training sessions? For someone that is just looking at chess from the outside, when you say a two and a half week training session, what does that consist of?
Carlsen: It just means that we’re a group of people that assemble at a place, preferably a good place where they are possibilities for sport and so on, and that the weather is good. And then we work on chess together for many hours a day and we also do some sports, [and] if we’re at the sea we go swimming and generally have a good time, and a good atmosphere. And hopefully find some inspirations and some new ideas for the chess as well.

JZ: When you talk about your team – are you talking about your trainers or who potentially you’ll have as “seconds” at the match in November against Anand?

Carlsen: Both people who will be helping me during the match either as advisors or working hard as seconds.

JZ: If you win in November, you’ll turn 23 a few days after. When athletes win a big game [like] the Super Bowl, for example, there’s sort of a tradition of say [when an] announcer asks them, “What are you going to do now?” and they’ll say, “I’m going to Disney World...” So put yourself in that mindset for a minute: You win the championship, [you’re] on top of the chess world, you turn 23 – What are you going to do to celebrate your birthday and that win?

Carlsen: I don’t know [he laughs]. I haven’t really thought that far ahead. I’m never really been a big fan of these kinds of lavish celebrations before, but obviously a world championship – if I win that one – it’s going to be something special. We’ll see. Right now my focus in on winning [it] rather than how to celebrate it. But I know for sure that I’m probably going to have a break after the world championship regardless of whether I win or lose.

JZ: So you know, a lot of people are hyping it to be the most anticipated match since Fischer–Spassky in’ 72. Why has it taken the world over 40 years to remember the game of chess?

Carlsen: I don’t know. I think also the Karpov—Kasparov matches in the ‘80 and early ‘90’s were pretty exciting as well.

JZ: With Fischer [and] his demands before the match and the Cold War – that fed into it. This [championship] seems to have a lot more of a natural feel to it.

Carlsen: I’m definitely the first no.1 in the world since Fischer, and probably at least since Kasparov, who probably has the most potential to dominate for the foreseeable future. So that’s something unusual and hopefully exciting for people.

JZ: How much do you think marketing has to do with getting chess into the mainstream yet again?

Carlsen: I think with chess as with everything, marketing is the main issue. I think the game has definite potential, it’s just about the way you present it and maybe make it exciting while preserving the qualities that make the game special. And we’ll see how that will work out. For me, the most important thing is to continue to play well and to be a positive figure and hopefully a role model for kids as well.

JZ: Speaking of the kids. They’ll probably want to know who your favorite chess player in the past is, and why.

Carlsen: That’s simple. I’ve never really had a favorite player, past or present. There are certainly loads of players that I admire; I try to learn from all of the great masters both of the past and contemporary as well. I’m more interested in the games than the people.

JZ: Is there a particular game of the past, or even one of your own that you look back on fondly, or that you continue to learn from?

Carlsen: Um, nah. I don’t know. It’s hard to say. There are so many games that I’ve seen that I’ve learned from. I never – that’s also part of the same – never single out a particular player or a particular game.

JZ: What kind of music do you listen to?

Carlsen: More or less anything – both contemporary music and older stuff. Depends on my mood.

JZ: Is there anything you listen to when you’re focusing on studying the game of chess, let’s say?

Carlsen: No, then I usually do without music [he laughs].

JZ: How about movies? Any favorite movies you can name?
Carlsen: I don’t really watch too many movies. I don’t have the patience usually to watch one, one and a half or two hours in a row.

JZ: I feel the same way. [I’m usually] ready to get up and go somewhere.
Carlsen: Yeah. I watch some TV series though.

JZ: Can you give me an example?
Carlsen: Right now I’m just watching through all [the] Seinfeld episodes that I’ve seen so many times already. It never gets old for me.

JZ: Who’s your favorite “Seinfeld” character?

Carlsen: It’s hard to say, but it’s more or less a tie between George and Kramer. I just like everything about it. I’ve also watched all of “Curb Your Enthusiasm.” It’s a bit of the same humor.

JZ: The Larry David connection.
Carlsen: Yep.

JZ: I read that you like to go ski jumping. Can you tell me a little bit about that?
Carlsen: Actually I haven’t done that for many years, but I’m thinking about going back to doing that. It was an exciting thing to do when I was younger and at some point I think I reached my peak. If I was going to do that anymore I would have to spend more time on it and also to go for some really dangerous large hills. And I was really going to do that.

JZ: Is that popular in Norway? The thought of going straight down a hill and flying through the air terrifies me personally.

Carlsen: Yeah. Lots of kids try it at least. It’s fun.

JZ: In Norway how have you seen [chess] grow?
Carlsen: In a way that before I would know all of the people in the chess environment, and now there are people who are walking up to me on the streets, who are following all the top tournaments, that I’ve never met in my life. Even people who don’t actually play the game themselves, they follow me and other tournaments; and people who have never played in a club they play online and they get lots of pleasure from that. And I think there are also more kids interested to learn the game. At least I hope so.

JZ: Tell me why. What sort of influence can chess have on kids?
Carlsen: First of all my impression is that most kids think it’s a fun game, at least until they’re told otherwise by society. And I think it helps you to concentrate, to think ahead, to think analytically and so on. But again, most of all, it’s fun and when you have fun then you’re more interested in learning. That’s the main aspect for me, that it can be used as a learning tool for kids.

JZ: And you think society tells kids that they should do something different for fun?
Carlsen: Yeah. In my experience, when I went to school, and especially in after-school, and during breaks, a lot of people wanted to sit down and play chess up till a certain age when it was not supposed to be cool anymore and people wanted to do other things. Kids love games and chess is a game where you have to sit down and concentrate and it just helps in every way.

-- First appeared in The Classical Illustration by Alex Roland.
Jonathan Zalman is a New York-based journalist, writer and teacher. Connect with him on Twitter @ZalmanJ.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Mr Cool of Chess: Focused Anand untouched by Carlsen Hype, Confident of Retaining World Championship Title

Posted by World Chess Championship 2013 News Blog Sunday, August 25, 2013
There is one thing that World Chess Champion Viswanathan Anand has improved over the years, and we're not talking about his chess this time. It's Anand's ability to block out the entire world and focus on the "task at hand" and the chess board. No wonder he's been World Champion five times. Not for him the fire and brimstone of his colleagues. Not for him media hype that builds up to a crescendo, but the steady, calm and cool approach of a champion who wins with his mind.

While we were focused on the media and fan frenzy that greeted World No. 1 Magnus Carlsen on his recent visit to inspect the World Chess Championship venue in Chennai, Viswanathan Anand has kept his head down and continued his training "at an undisclosed location" with a secret team.

Anand's wife and manager told journalists, after venue inspection, that he is in “deep throes of training” with his seconds. "This is a preliminary inspection. We will make another visit two to three days prior to the championship,” she said.


Aruna also said Anand had been operating “out of Chennai for a reasonable length of time. He is neither looking back nor looking ahead. Specific chess problems occupy his mind now.”

Further, in an email interview to the New Indian Express, Anand has said, "We are just trying to cover as much ground as we can. Surely, the matches have taught me something. But each match for me is a new challenge. I close the chapter on the previous match and approach this as a new challenge."

Anand said, "This is not the first time that I am playing a big event in India. Dreev, New Delhi and then World Cup were all big events that went well for me. I understand the pressure. In the end, only good moves will win the match so that’s the only thing I would want to think about since that’s what I can control."

Viswanathan Anand told the Indian newspaper, he was confident of retaining his title. He said, "My team is made up of excellent people and I hope I can justify their faith and hard work they put in me." As regards his "secret of winning big matches," Anand says, "I try to just look at the game in hand. I don’t want to start analysing that now. At present, I am only thinking of Chennai 2013 and that’s what matters."

Anand respects Carlsen's talent and says, "He is a tenacious player. Lots of talent and extremely ambitious."

After a recent Times Now report stating the Anand camp was not happy with the "illness clause" in the World Chess Championship contract, both Anand and Aruna have maintained that they would not like to discuss the clause. Anand said, "The contracts have been signed, I don’t want to dwell on it. I don’t doubt Carlsen’s integrity as a sportsperson and I am sure neither party will misuse it."

Sources in the All India Chess Federation (AICF) said, "It's obvious that all concerned want the match to take place. Why effort should not be made to ensure that everyone is satisfied and all is done in the best interests of the sport? We should focus on the positives of bringing such a big event to India instead of speculating about what the contract is. After all, neither of the players have signed the contract under duress. There is no need for such discussions." 

Carlsen’s Chennai visit has also gone un-noticed by the World Champion. "I am not aware of the details of his visit. I don’t follow chess news when I train. He has been at our home in Spain a few times and always enjoyed the food it seemed," Anand said.

Throughout his career, the Indian chess prodigy has come across as someone calm, quiet, extremely level-headed and forever amiable. He prefers to speak through his chess. -- Zainab Raza Undulusi

Friday, August 23, 2013

Super Internet Link for Live Anand - Carlsen World Chess Championship 2013 in Hyatt Regency Ballroom

Posted by World Chess Championship 2013 News Blog Friday, August 23, 2013
Chennai: FIDE vice-president Israel Gelfer has said, "As millions of fans from all over the world will be watching the Anand - Carlsen World Chess Championship 2013 live from various parts of the world through the Internet we have ensured that the connections were particularly of high quality. We are going to ensure that the server does not crash during the event."

All India Chess Federation CEO Bharat Singh said live video streaming of the match as well as live commentary on the internet will be made available.

Israel Gelfer was speaking to journalists in Chennai after inspecting arrangements made at the World Chess Championship 2013 venue Hyatt Regency. He told journalists at a press conference that the upcoming match would be one of the best, if not the best, in the entire history of world chess championship events.

Gelfer said he was fully satisfied with the arrangements. Both Carlsen and Anand's team have also said they were satisfied with the arrangements made for the historic chess match.

Gelfer recalled FIDE's association with Hyatt Group of Hotels as early as 2000 during the World Championship match held in New Delhi. 


____________________
The 434 sq m (4670 sq ft) pillar-less ballroom, with an 18 ft high ceiling, is divisible into two soundproof sections. The ballroom has a dedicated entrance at the main porch and a spacious pre-function area of 391 sq m (4208 sq ft). Beautifully done with contemporary chandeliers dotting it’s ceiling; the ballroom is a visual treat. (Sources said the ballroom would be used for the Anand - Carlsen World Chess Championship 2013.)

____________________

FIDE vice-president D V Sundar also told journalists that arrangements had been made for 350 spectators to witness the match. He said a glass partition would be erected to separate the players and the spectators in order to ensure that the players do not get disturbed by the audience.

Side chess events at Anand - Carlsen World Chess Championship 2013 All-India Chess Federation Secretary V Hariharan told journalists about various other chess activities to be organised during the World Chess Championship 2013.

Hariharan said there would be a Women Grandmasters' event, an Open International Grandmasters' tournament, National Under-9 Chess Championship as well as a host of other events during November.

The first would be a 'Beach Blitz', wherein a Blitz event (5 minutes per player) will be organised at the Marina Beach beneath colourful umbrellas.

Hyatt Regency General Manager Sunjae Sharma said that Carlsen loved Indian delicacies during his stay at the Hyatt. He said that Hyatt Regency has a Norwegian chef and that Carlsen and his team members were very comfortable with the food served at the Hotel. -- Zainab Raza Undulusi

Is the zero-tolerance rule going to be implemented at the Anand - Carlsen World Chess Championship in November, 2013? Would Carlsen forfeit any game if he forgets his way through the elevators, or would Anand forfeit a game if he gets late by a few minutes because of the traffic jam outside the Hyatt Regency, Chennai?

Interestingly, FIDE vice-president DV Sundar, has said, "Several things would get clearer once the world body announces the Chief Arbiter for the Viswanathan Anand - Magnus Carlsen World Chess Championship Match in November. The arbiter will have a meeting with both players before finalising two important points in the match regulations."


"The arbiter has to decide whether agreed draws will be allowed before 30 moves (with exception of three-fold repetition etc) and whether zero-tolerance policy will be applicable about the starting time of the games," Sundar said.

FIDE LAWS of CHESS
The FIDE Laws of Chess are evaluated every four years and updated if required. The latest set of laws of chess as of today came into effect September 9, 2012 (including the law relating to the zero-tolerance rule that came into effect in 2009 without being updated in 2012):
6.7 a. Any player who arrives at the chessboard after the start of the session shall lose the game unless the arbiter decides to postpone the start of the game due to unforeseen circumstances. Thus the default time is 0 minutes. The rules of a competition may specify a different default time.b. If the rules of a competition specify in advance a different default time, the following shall apply. If neither player is present initially, the player who has the white pieces shall lose all the time that elapses until he arrives, unless the rules of the competition specify or the arbiter decides otherwise.

The law first came into effect July 1st, 2009. A player who arrives just a few seconds late at his board, loses the game. At that time, the FIDE General Assembly actually could not come to an agreement on the zero-tolerance rule and, eventually, the Presidential Board decided to implement the rule.

Before 2009, the law stated

6.6 If neither player is present initially, the player who has the white pieces shall lose all the time that elapses until he arrives; unless the rules of the competition specify or the arbiter decides otherwise.6.7 Any player who arrives at the chessboard more than one hour after the scheduled start of the session shall lose the game unless the rules of the competition specify or the arbiter decides otherwise.

The big difference between the two is the clause 'or the arbiter decides otherwise' which was knocked off.

The Criticism and some unfortunate instances
The zero-tolerance rule has ever since been criticised. Some organisers have implemented it way too strictly, an example being the recent the Chess World Cup in Tromso, Norway. (Read Kasparov's comments here on Jorge Cori's 'misfortune' at the World Cup.) 

The 2008 Dresden Olympiad witnessed eight forfeits due to the zero-tolerance rule. 

Even former Women's World Chess Champion Hou Yifan of China has suffered such a forfeit. Then a 15-year-old only woman participant at the event, Yifan forfeited her game against Liang Chong in Round 8 of the Chinese Chess Championship, 2009. 

Hou was in the hall, had filled out her scoresheet, but was not sitting at her board when the clock showed the starting time as 14:00:00h. She was late by five seconds! 

At the same tournament, Ding Liren became the youngest Chinese Chess Champion with benefits coming through the zero-tolerance rule. 

In March 2012, Grandmaster Mamedyarov was forfeited for arriving at the board 10 seconds after the officially stated start time at the at the European Chess Championship in Plovdov, Bulgaria.

The zero-tolerance rule does not specify whether a chess player should actually be seated behind the board, or standing nearby would do! 

Supposedly, the German Chess Federation is not too strict about the rule and allows players' presence in the premises of the building where the tournament is being held. Since FIDE has allowed organisers to decide beforehand whether they would like to implement the zero-tolerance rule, one example to quote is Canada. None of the chess tournament organisers in Canada have ever implemented the zero-tolerance rule in the country so far.

In India, many organisers prefer not to implement the rule in open tournaments, though it is strictly followed in all national championships. India's youngest-ever national chess champion G Akash benefited from the zero-tolerance rule when, in Round 11, at the national championship in October, 2013, he won by forfeit because the leader of the pack, M R Venkatesh, reached the board three minutes late. Venkatesh was caught in rush-hour traffic in Kolkata!

Following representation by the Association of Chess Professionals, the Presidential Board in Sofia, 2010 confirmed their previous decision that organisers of events where the zero tolerance rule was in operation should be obliged to provide participants with the best conditions in order that they can respect the rule.

A large digital countdown clock must be allowed when there are more than 30 participants. Announcements via microphone are required five minutes before start of games when there are less than 30 contestants. A large digital clock has become a tradition of sorts for all top-level chess tournaments. But, don't the players have to be in the hall to be able to see the clock at least, and then make a dash for the table?


"I am just dead nervous about the zero-tolerance rule!" Magnus Carlsen had remarked about arriving early for games at the 2013 World Championship Candidates Tournament in London. Carlsen has also emphatically said he is against the spirit of short draws and chess fans would not witness anything close to dull draws like in the Anand - Gelfand World Chess Championship 2012. The zero-tolerance rule, or the Sofia rule (against draws before a particular number of moves) did not apply at the Anand - Gelfand event in Moscow. 

World Chess Champion Viswanathan Anand has always maintained that he prefers to skip the Chess Olympiads because of the zero-tolerance rule (and Swiss system of play).


However, Anand is possibly okay with the zero-tolerance rule at the World Chapionship!


The Hindu quoted Anand in July, 2012: “There are lots of strong rules, like the zero-tolerance rule, that simply make playing unpleasant for no benefit,” explains the five-time World champion. It is fine to have the zero-tolerance rule in the World championships and elite tournaments. But the rule makes little sense in the Olympiad where you have 2000 players!”

The intrinsic question remains the same and that's not just in chess: Rules are for people, or people are for the rules.

We hope neither Anand, nor Carlsen, lose any of their games due to a forfeit as per the zero-tolerance rule. If such were a thing were to happen...

... Or, maybe, the World Championship arbiters won't implement the rule at all in Chennai for the epic Anand - Carlsen clash! -- Zainab Raza Undulusi


P.S. The Armenia Chess Federation had announced in July, 2013, on their official website that FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov had appointed IA Ashot Vardapetyan of Armenia as the chief arbiter for the Anand - Carlsen World Championship Match. Vardapetyan was also the chief arbiter of the World Championship Match Anand – Gelfand (Moscow, 2012).

Saturday, August 17, 2013

World Chess Championship 2013 in Chennai: Has Anand already predicted Carlsen's Victory? (updated)

Posted by World Chess Championship 2013 News Blog Saturday, August 17, 2013

Photo: AICF

Did World Champion Viswanathan Anand already predict Magnus Carlsen winning the World Chess Championship 2013 title in Chennai? Here are some interesting quotes by Viswanathan Anand on Carlsen. Particular to note is what Anand said about Carlsen in 2008.

April 3, 2013 to DNA
Anand: In my opinion, Carlsen is the greatest talent I have seen. He is really unique in that sense. And that I think is absolutely huge. It will be a very, very big challenge. I understand the magnitude of my task.
...
The broad outlook of our game is similar. The prospect of facing Carlsen is a new one for me in many, many ways. I will have to figure out my strategy.

April 3, 2013 to The Indian Express

Is there a favourite going into the match?
Anand: I have to say that most people who look at the two of us will conclude that Magnus is the outright favourite. I'm cool with that. It doesn't really worry me. I'm fully aware of the magnitude of the task facing me, and Magnus' rank and rating speak for themselves. Having said that I don't feel any obligation to follow the predictions. That's what we are playing the match for. To have a chance to write our own script.

How different will this be from your previous WCC matches?
Anand: Firstly, he is not from my generation. There is a difference in age and outlook. When I played Kramnik, Topalov and Gelfand, I read them in a certain way. And even then, I thought that if I end up playing Vlady this time, it would be a different Vlady from the one I played before. Carlsen is from a different generation and he is also one of the most talented players from any generation. He will be ridiculously difficult to play against, yeah.

July 4, 2013 to The Indian Express
Anand: Carlsen has shown himself to be a resourceful and dangerous opponent, so I'll have to work really hard. I felt that the tournaments indicated a lot of problem areas, even ones I haven't mentioned or revealed. You feel some concerns at the board and it is difficult to replicate them at home. You play these tournaments and have lots of thoughts and ideas about what you want to do afterwards. That's the most I can take away from them.

The loss against Carlsen (Tal Memorial), how difficult was that to take?
Anand: That was one of the worst. Not only did I lose, I lost embarrassingly. The game was over in just a couple of hours. It was a really, really off day. It's a pity. Something clearly just went wrong and I have some idea what it is. I will work at fixing that problem, but it is one among many problems that have cropped up.

The significance of the loss?
Anand: What can I tell you... It has some significance. In the end I would say the match (world championship) begins at 0-0. I'm happy I got it over with in June rather than it happening in November. Ideally, I would have played a better game, a better tournament. A good tournament result would definitely have been better than what I had but that is life. I don't want to fret about it.

Surprisingly, Carlsen was caught out in a couple of end games (against Wang Hao and Fabiano Caruana) this year, his supposed strength. What did you make of it?
Not only were these tournaments an experience for me, but for him as well. I have a lot of material to work on, a lot of material from my games and a lot from his. I noticed some of the things you've mentioned but I'll have to take a much more complete look and spend a lot of time on that.

January 10, 2008 to Spiegel

In recent times the Norwegian Magnus Carlsen has been in the headlines. He is seventeen and at the beginning of the month he was, for five days, the number one in the unofficial world rankings. How good is he?
Anand: He will sooner or later become World Champion. I like him, he is a Monty Python fan, just like me.

We don't know what notes about Monty Python the two have been exchanging lately, but this is for sure. Chennai is Carlsen's best shot yet. Carlsen will have to win the 2014 World Championship candidates if he loses in Chennai and wants to try a crack at the top title once again. Winning the 2014 World Championship Candidates might not be easy second time in a row for Carlsen considering the line-up! 

Anand and Carlsen are sure to showcase their best in Chennai. If Carlsen were to win, Anand would be happy enough to pass on his mantle to a worthy candidate whose success he himself has predicted. If Anand were to retain his title, chess fans would know the next chess generation has not arrived!




Post this article we received following tweet. Thereafter is our answer. Don't forget to vote (in the sidebar on right) on who do you think will win

EastMidlandsChess ‏@EMidlandsChess 2h
@bandwindia Happy to build up expectations on Carlsen? Is Anand underdog, despite his wealth of WCC Match experience? 

Chess Magazine B&W ‏@bandwindia 1h
@EMidlandsChess nt buildin hype. Anand has achieved all. One day he will pass on the title. Q: Is it now? :) 

World Chess Championship 2014 Candidates: Who Could be the Players?

Posted by World Chess Championship 2013 News Blog
Destiny has thus decided: Once friends, now rivals, World No. 1 Magnus Carlsen will take on World Chess Champion Viswanathan Anand in Chennai this November. But, what about the rest of the chess elite? They will have to now focus on the eight-player World Championship Candidate matches of 2014. It's not that early to think about the Candidates 2014, is it?

The loser of the Chennai World Championship 2013 match automatically gets a slot in the World Championship Candidate matches of 2014. Levon Aronian and Vladimir Kramnik are the other two who already have a slot because of their top ratings. The FIDE statue defines this as: The next two highest rated players who played in the Chess World Cup 2013 or the FIDE Grand Prix 2012–2013 (average FIDE rating on the 12 monthly lists from August 2012 to July 2013). Then, the organisers of the Candidates would get a wild card entry option. Since it is already rumoured that the Candidates 2014 could be in Russia, maybe Sergey Karjakin would get the organisers' wild card slot.


The World Chess Cup being held in Norway with a field of 128, in Tromso, Norway, from 10th August to 3rd September will offer the top two an entry into the World Championship 2014 Candidates as well. The FIDE World Chess Cup (World Cup) is an integral part of the World Championship Cycle 2012-2014.

Also, the six-event Grand Prix will offer two more candidates. After the already-played fifth leg in Beijing, Veselin Topalov has won the Grand Prix and qualified to the Candidates. One more Grand Prix event is left to be played in Paris in September. This would give the other candidate from among Shakhriyar Mamedyarov, Fabiano Caruana, or Alexander Grischuk who all have a chance of qualifying if they pull off a clear win in Paris.

After the Candidates 2014, we would know who would challenge the winner of the Anand - Carlsen match. But, that's a long way off. First, onwards ho to the Anand-Carlsen World Chess Championship 2013 at the seaside venue of Chennai.

Friday, August 16, 2013

Two-Days' Casual Leave Option for Carlsen: World Chess Championship Organisers

Posted by World Chess Championship 2013 News Blog Friday, August 16, 2013
Has a special clause been added in the World Chess Championship 2013 contract to allow the players a two-day 'leave of absence' from 'work' due to illness?

A report in the Indian newspaper Deccan Chronicle states: After a delay of two months and the inclusion of an illness clause in the terms and conditions, World No.1 Magnus Carlsen of Norway and five-time world champion Viswanathan Anand of India signed the contract on Tuesday for the world chess championship match that is slated to take place in Chennai from November 7 to 28 this year.
World Chess Championship Venue: 
Hyatt Regency Chennai, India

“For the first time in a world chess championship match, we have introduced an illness clause that states that a player can take two days off if he falls sick,” a source told Deccan Chronicle, adding that the players were expected to sign the contract long ago.
“Mails went back and forth between the players, organisers and Fide before it was finally settled on Tuesday.” 
In fact, the one fear that most players and top Grandmasters have expressed about the World Chess Championship venue being in Chennai is that Carlsen might not be able to cope with the food and heat in India. Carlsen's team - during the World Championship - is going to include a chef. Carlsen has never travelled to India before and is totally unfamiliar with the climate and conditions. What makes it even more tricky is that the weather conditions in Chennai are 'polar' opposite to that of any city in his home country of Norway.

The clause has possibly been added to allay any fears Team Carlsen may have about playing in India. Chennai is Viswanathan Anand's home city. It is unlikely that the clause has been added on the World Champion's request!

However, if Carlsen would be staying in his hotel and not venturing out during the match, it is unlikely that he would be affected by the weather. The Hyatt Regency - venue of the World Chess Championship 2013 - in Chennai, offers world-class facilities. 

Carlsen is visiting Chennai next week to inspect Hyatt Regency, the venue for his match against Anand. During his maiden trip to India, he is scheduled to play simultaneous chess with young players at MOP Vaishnav College on Monday. The Norwegian may meet the Tamil Nadu chief minister on Tuesday before he flies back home on the same day. Carlsen will be accompanied by his manager Espen Agdestein. 

Viswanathan Anand's wife and manager Aruna has already inspected the tournament venue. 

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

World Chess Championship Challenger Magnus Carlsen's new Sponsors: Nordic Semiconductor

Posted by World Chess Championship 2013 News Blog Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Magnus Carslen, the youngest ever chess world number 1, shakes hands on a three-year sponsorship deal with Nordic Semiconductor CEO Svenn-Tore Larsen (right). Photo: Moment Studio

Described as 'a perfect match' by Nordic Semiconductor's CEO, Svenn-Tore Larsen, the leading manufacturer of ultra low power wireless technology teams up with the world's number one chess player.

Oslo, Norway 2013/08/13: Ultra low power (ULP) RF specialist Nordic Semiconductor ASA (OSE: NOD) today announces it is sponsoring Magnus Carlsen, the youngest player to be ranked number one in world chess and the highest ranking points holder in the history of the game, in a three-year deal.

Norwegian Carlsen rose to the top of the world rankings in January 2010, just after his 19th birthday. In December 2012, Carlsen broke the 13-year ranking point record held by Gary Kasparov by gaining 2861 Elo rating system points against Kasparov's best of 2851. He has so far peaked at a record high of 2872, earning him the right to be called the best player in chess history. In 2013, Time magazine ranked Carlsen among the 100 most influential people in the world. Carlsen takes on the reigning world champion, Vishy Anand, in a 12-match playoff for the world championship title in Chennai, India, later this year.

"We are delighted to have the opportunity to sponsor Magnus Carlsen. His presence will boost staff motivation and help us recruit the best people, but we will gain much more than that from this exciting association," says Nordic's CEO, Svenn-Tore Larsen. "The core value of this sponsorship is the ability of Magnus to act as a Nordic ambassador and open doors at the very highest level. He has access to people and events normally reserved for dignitaries such as Presidents."


With the signing of the Nordic deal, Carlsen has completed his sponsorship portfolio. "We kept one sponsorship position open for a while in order to find the best partner," comments Carlsen's manager Espen Agdestein. "For Magnus it`s not just a question of money, but of finding sponsors with values and beliefs that he can relate to."

"There are great benefits to our brand in the association with Magnus," adds Svenn-Tore Larsen. "Just like him, Nordic has succeeded in a very competitive global sector. While Magnus' business is chess and Nordic's is ultra low power wireless technology, both have to be continuously creative, while still being totally reliable. There is no room for mistakes in either environment."

Carlsen is enthusiastic about the partnership. "Nordic is the leading company in a market that is about to boom, with a cascade of new products and services being developed all over the world," he comments. "I look forward to being part of this revolution."

Having succeeded in pioneering the ultra low power wireless technology sector with its proprietary technology, Nordic Semiconductor was part of the group that developed Bluetooth® low energy, a hallmark element of the Bluetooth v4.0 Core specification. The company has also collaborated with ANT Wireless of Cochrane, Canada--the company behind ANT RF protocol software and ANT+ Managed Networks--for over a decade.

The latest smartphones from major manufacturers incorporate chips and software supporting Bluetooth v4.0 or ANT+ that can communicate with Bluetooth Smart devices or ANT+ peripherals equipped with Nordic's nRF51 Series Systems-on-Chip. (See "About nRF51 Series" below). This functionality is yielding many new opportunities for wirelessly-connected products, powered by coin cell batteries, such as handset accessories, sports & fitness monitors, and toys. (See "About Bluetooth low energy wireless technology" and "About Nordic ANT wireless connectivity" below.)

Sunday, August 11, 2013

St Louis before Chennai: Carlsen to Check World Chess Championship Prep?

Posted by World Chess Championship 2013 News Blog Sunday, August 11, 2013
GM Magnus Carlsen looks on as GM Hikaru Nakamura contemplates his next move at the London Chess Classic in 2012. Image Courtesy Ray Morris-Hill: www.rmhphoto.eu.

There is just one more chess outing lined up for the World No. 1 before he heads off to the World Championship venue of Chennai. It is St Louis.  

For the first time ever, World Championship challenger GM Magnus Carlsen will play a high-profile tournament in the United States.

The World’s No. 1 ranked chess player on the planet will take on three other top-ten players in Saint Louis this September when he joins GMs Levon Aronian, Hikaru Nakamura and Gata Kamsky for the Sinquefield Cup, a four-player, double round robin scheduled to be held at the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis (CCSCSL) September 9-15.

In November, Carlsen will challenge GM Viswanathan Anand of India for the World Chess Championship title. CCSCSL Executive Director Tony Rich said this event marks an important milestone for U.S. chess.

“We are honored to bring the world’s best chess player to Saint Louis this September,” Rich said. “Hosting an event of this magnitude is yet another sign that the U.S. is becoming a major player in the world chess scene.”

Carlsen and Aronian currently sit atop the world rankings at No. 1 and 2, respectively, while Nakamura and Kamsky hold the No. 1 and 2 spots in the U.S.

The average FIDE rating for the field is over 2800, making it the strongest tournament in the history of the U.S. The opening ceremony will take place on September 8, and round 1 will begin at 1 p.m. CT on Monday, September 9.

The Sinquefield Chess Cup, which will feature a prize fund of $170,000, is named after the founders of the CCSCSL, Jeanne and Rex Sinquefield. The Sinquefields were each honored by the U.S. Chess Federation with a Gold Koltanowski award in 2012, with Rex also earning the distinction in 2009, 2010 and 2011. The award is given to the person or persons who have done the most to promote chess in the U.S. each year.

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Beating Anand Not Easy, But Carlsen Has his Chances: Former World Chess Champion Anatoly Karpov

Posted by World Chess Championship 2013 News Blog Saturday, August 10, 2013

Former World Chess Champion Anatoly Karpov of Russia has said beating Viswanathan Anand is not an easy task but, Magnus Carlsen has his chances - in fact, the chance of his life! Karpov was speaking to journalists ahead of the opening of the World Chess Cup 2013 in Tromsø , Norway on Friday. 

"The whole world is waiting for this match with a great interest... Magnus has achieved many big successes... he is young, he has good age. I think he is in the best age to become World Champion. Anand is very experienced and he is the world champion for many years already. He was also a young star and became known already when he was 16. At least I met him for the first time at this age. So, he is well-prepared. This is not an easy task to beat Anand, but Magnus has chances."

"Magnus will have some problems with climate and food: less with climate, more with food. He has to be very careful, but these are besides chess. As to chess, he must show his best form, he must be well-prepared. I think he has knowledge and the time he was working with Kasparov, I don't know if they still work together, gave him a good understanding of what is the fight for the world title: this is absolutely different from any other even the strongest tournament: it has special character, special atmosphere."

Karpov said he would advise Carlsen, "Just to make right estimation of his own strengths and weaknesses and the weaknesses and strong points of the opponent." (You can watch the original video on msn Norwegian site by clicking on the photo above.)

Thursday, August 8, 2013

I Expect Viswanathan Anand to be in Top Form: Magnus Carlsen

Posted by World Chess Championship 2013 News Blog Thursday, August 8, 2013

OSLO, Aug 8 (By Gwladys Fouche/Reuters) - World chess number one Magnus Carlsen of Norway is relaxed ahead of his challenge later this year for the world champion crown against reigning titleholder Viswanathan Anand of India.

Slouched on a couch and fiddling with the zipper of his purple hoodie, the chess wonderboy is confident he will win the one title that has eluded him when he meets Anand in Chennai, India, on November 6-26.

"It has been a while since I went into a game with losing as an option," the 22-year-old, dubbed the "Mozart of chess" because like Mozart he was a virtuoso from a young age, told Reuters in an interview.

Carlsen became the world's number one at age 19, the youngest player ever to do so. A grandmaster since he was 13, he has the highest rating in the history of the game, ahead of chess great Garry Kasparov's 1999 record.

The world number-one ranking is determined by a mathematical system that uses match results to determine an individual's playing strength - much like the ATP ranking for tennis.

Kasparov, who coached Carlsen, has described him as a once-in-a-generation talent.

And genius player he may be, but like most young men, he also is concerned about his social life, about going out and having fun.

He usually gets up around midday and works short hours. "I
can't concentrate for more than three hours. So I might work for
maybe one and half hours a day. But it will still work in my
head afterwards," he said.

 

On Facebook he describes himself as an athlete. In person he
wears washed-out, torn jeans and trainers. He once modeled for
Dutch fashion brand G-Star Raw with U.S. actress Liv Tyler.

Asked whether it was easy for him to meet women in Norway,
Carlsen said: "It is. It helps to be well known."

TORMENTING OPPONENTS

As a player, Carlsen is deemed to be equally strong no matter what challenges come his way on the chess board.

His mental prowess and physical fitness afford him the stamina to torment his opponents for hours until they finally make a mistake. Carlsen rarely makes any tangible errors.

Unlike Kasparov, famous for his strong and aggressive opening play, Carlsen strives to get a playable position from the opening with many pieces left on the board - confident that he can outplay his opponent in the middle-game or endgame. In the later stages of the game, his play is almost flawless.
 


Carlsen will need all of his skills against Anand in Chennai and is already in training. He is surrounding himself with three to four players to play against - he won't say whom - as well as a support group, including his father, to motivate him.

In July he played tennis and beach volleyball with former professional athletes, as part of a training camp he set up at a resort in southern Norway.

"This will give me an advantage because at the end of amatch, you are very tired. If you feel good and strong, youconcentrate better," he said.

Later this month Carlsen will tour Chennai to familiarise himself with its sights and sounds. He also will play some tournaments, unlike Anand, who says he will solely focus on training.

Carlsen is considered a favourite to win: he beat the Indian in June in their last encounter. But he does not underestimate his rival.
"It will depend on which Anand I get on the day. Will it bethe great Anand of 2008? Or will it be the terrible one?
"I expect him to be on top form. An Anand in top form hassharp tactics, great strength and a great understanding of the game."

(Additional reporting by Oskar von Bahr in Budapest; Editing by
Michael Roddy) -- Copyright © 2013, Reuters/Photos: Carlsen FB page posts on training at the Kragerø Resort.)

World Chess Championship Prep: Carlsen, Jon Ludvig Hammer, Fressinet Video

Posted by World Chess Championship 2013 News Blog
World Chess Championship 2013 Preparation: There is not much news coming from World Chess Champion Viswanathan Anand. However, the challenger, World No. 1 Magnus Carlsen has posted interesting photos and even a video on his Facebook page about his preparation for the 'Big Match' to be held in Chennai from November 6-26. Carlsen is preparing with the help of Grandmasters Jon Ludvig Hammer and Laurent Fressinet at the Kragerø Resort.



What's the special reason Carlsen has chosen this resort to prepare for the World Chess Championship in Chennai? The beautiful town of Kragerø is surrounded by islands and skerries and provides a beautiful experience of coastal life and culture of Southern Norway. 




World Chess Championship 2013: Norway Embassy in India Helping Carlsen's Team

Posted by World Chess Championship 2013 News Blog
The Norwegian Embassy in India is involved in helping Magnus Carlsen (22) with the upcoming World Chess Championship Chennai match, writes Sindre Murtnes in the Norwegian website nrk.no. Carlsen's manager Espen Agdestein said, "We are very pleased that they (the Norwegian Embassy) has been so committed, and that they are so determined to help. We have already received a lot of help. They have had several meetings with the Indian Chess Federation. They have checked out hotel facilities and they are doing at all they can to help us."

Carlsen is, at present, training in Kragerø. Carlsen's team is being very careful about how to plan for India for the World Chess Championship in Chennai.
 
Tone Slenes, first secretary, Embassy of Norway in New Delhi, says her primary responsibility to help Carlsen and his team with his stay. She also said it was natural for the Embassy to help exploit the cultural benefits becoming available with the World Chess Championship 2013.

She said, "This a huge event for both Norway and India, and it is natural for us to use it as an opportunity to promote cooperation between Norwegian and Indian resources. It is interesting in relation to cultural cooperation, science, research and business."

She said the Embassy has good contacts in the Indian Chess Federation and that have helped in the dialogue between the chess federations. The Embassy has also assisted with practical work including visas, travel, hotel and other facilities.

World Chess Champion Viswanathan Anand Honored in Los Angeles

Posted by World Chess Championship 2013 News Blog
Seen with the resolution honoring World Chess Champion Viswanathan Anand are (l-r): Anand, Ardashes Kassakhian, and Ankit Gupta.

Los Angeles, Claif, US: Los Angeles city councilman Paul Krekorian initiated a resolution in the last week of July to felicitate World Chess Champion Viswanathan Anand during his visit to Southern California.

Anand was in Los Angeles at the invitation of Metropolitan Chess, Inc.’s Indian American founder Ankit Gupta for a camp that brought together over 100 youth attendees from all over the nation for a five-day training session by internationally recognized coaches.

It was Anand's second visit to California, having previously been invited by the chess organization. During this visit, he had an opportunity to interact with the young players.

City clerk Ardashes Kassakhian presented Anand with the special resolution, signed by all 15 city council members, which read in part: “Anand has become an ambassador for chess in his native country of India and around the world…and has helped spread the benefits of learning and playing chess to many young Americans.”

Kassakhian also presented Anand with a key to the City of Glendale, a suburb north of Los Angeles that boasts a large Armenian population and chess heritage.

During their meeting, Kassakhian acknowledged Anand's upcoming title defense in November 2013 against Norwegian wunderkind and Grandmaster Magnus Carlsen. The match will be played in Anand's hometown of Chennai.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

The Chess Queen who Beat 'em Both: Kosteniuk Videos

Posted by World Chess Championship 2013 News Blog Wednesday, August 7, 2013
The 12th Women's World Chess Champion, Grandmaster Alexandra Kosteniuk has the unique distinction of being the woman chess player to have beaten both the World No. 1 and men's World Chess Champion - Magnus Carlsen and Viswanathan Anand. Here are the two videos from Chess Queen™ Alexandra Kosteniuk's official YouTube channel. Interestingly, Women's World Chess Champion Alexandra Kosteniuk beat Anand, Carlsen, Polgar, Aronian, Morozevich, Gashimov, Naiditsch and Grischuk at this tournament! She drew with Leko, Jakovenko and Karpov. 








In which other sport can the reigning women's world champion beat the overall (men's) world champion and the world No. 1? :)

Anand Carlsen Head-to-Head Record So Far

Posted by World Chess Championship 2013 News Blog

World Chess Champion Viswanathan Anand and Challenger Magnus Carlsen have played a total of 29 classical time-control games against each other from 2005 to June 18, 2013. Of these, Anand has won six, Carsen has won three and 20 have been drawn. But, Anand's victories have come before Carlsen began his stratospheric rise on the ratings list.



For the most recent game between Viswanathan Anand and Magnus Carlsen at the Tal Chess Memorial in June, 2013, check this game/post link.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Tal Chess June 2013: Carlsen-Anand 1-0

Posted by World Chess Championship 2013 News Blog Monday, August 5, 2013
The fifth round at the 8th Tal Chess Memorial on June 18, 2013 was the last time World No. 1 Magnus Carlsen and World Chess Champion Viswanathan Anand met across the board before the 2013 World Chess Championship. Not just Moscow, most of the chess world had an exciting Tuesday as the Challenger beat the World Champion who played a passive game. Carlsen played a rare variation in the Nimzo-Indian and said: I thought I’d play a line that he hasn’t faced in a long time and I thought that hopefully he wouldn’t be too prepared for that.



Speaking about the psychological advantage of the game, Magnus Carlsen said:
I think it's good before the World Championship match to remind him that I can outplay him once in a while. [Smiles.] Since obviously between us there have been a lot of draws, recently at least. But I'm not going to go around and think that he's going to have such a bad day every day at the World Championship. I'll have to prepare for the worst, definitely. And to clarify, I don't mean to prepare for the worst, that I'm going to lose necessarily, but that he's going to be at his best and not give away anything [for] free like today.
Eventually, Boris Gelfand won the event with 6 points and Carlsen was a clear second with 5.5 points. Anand finished ninth with 3.5 points at the event just ahead of Vladimir Kramnik in the 10-player event

Here is the Round 5 game with comments by Magnus Carlsen at the post-match press conference.



Carlsen, M. (2864) - Anand, V. (2786)

Result: 1-0
Site: Moscow RUS
Date: 2013.06.18

[...] 1.d4 ¤f6 2.c4 e6 3.¤c3 ¥b4 4.e3 O-O 5.¤ge2 "I thought I'd play a line that he hasn't faced in a long time and I thought that hopefully he wouldn't be too prepared for that." (Carlsen) 


5...d5 6.a3 ¥e7 7.cxd5 ¤xd5 8.¥d2 ¤d7 9.g3 b6 10.¤xd5 exd5 11.¥g2 ¥b7 12.¥b4 "Since I've put all my pawns on dark squares it makes sense to exchange this bishop first." (Carlsen) 


12...¤f6 12... c5 13. dxc5 bxc5 14. Bc3 and "his hanging pawns are more likely to be weak than a dynamic strength, because his pieces are not particularly active and mine are well positioned to meet whatever he's going to do in the center." (Carlsen) 


13.O-O ¦e8 14.¦c1 c6 15.¥xe7 ¦xe7 16.¦e1 £d6 Carlsen expected 16... Ne4 17. Nf4 Nd6 "and I can never really push the pawns on the queenside because the knight is very well placed to meet that, but after 18. Nd3 followed by putting pressure on the c6-pawn White is already playing for two results, which is an achievement." (Carlsen) 


17.¤f4 ¥c8 "Now he's trying to reposition the bishop to f5 after which his problems would be much less. It's a decent enough positional move, it just doesn't work. At least as far as I could see." (Carlsen) 


18.£a4 ¦c7 "The logical move, preparing ...Bf5." (Carlsen) 18... Bd7 19. Qb4! "and I believe in general the exchange of queens is favourable to White. 19... Ne8 20. Nd3 f6 21. Qxd6 Nxd6 22. Nb4 Rc8 23. Nxc6 Bxc6 24. Rxc6 Rxc6 25. Bxd5+ is of course a helpful line but it explains that Black is already in a bit of trouble here." (Carlsen) 


19.f3 "Now the problem is I change plans. I really cannot see a good continuation here for him. If I manage to push e4-e5 he will have serious positional problems." (Carlsen) 


19...¥e6 "I was thinking about 19... Qd8 20. e4 dxe4 21. fxe4 Bd7 and now White shouldn't rush but play 22. Qb3! keeping all the threats. (22. e5 Nd5 23. Nxd5 cxd5 ) 


20.e4 dxe4 21.fxe4 £d7 22.d5 cxd5 23.£xd7 ¦xd7 24.¤xe6 fxe6 25.¥h3 "I suspect he missed this, after which it's pretty much gone. There are tactical problems everywhere." (Carlsen) 



25...¢h8 26.e5 ¤g8 27.¥xe6 ¦dd8 28.¦c7 d4 29.¥d7 "I just go 30.e6 and take the pawn; there's really nothing he can do." (Carlsen) 1-0

Getting Fit to Fight: World No. 1 Magnus Carlsen

Posted by World Chess Championship 2013 News Blog
Magnus Carlsen (22) is just three months away from the biggest chess match of his life, but "I do not feel any pressure at all. Everything is normal for me," he told Norwegian news agency NTB today. An interview/feature report appeared in the Norwegian website dagbladet.no.

Carlsen said in the article, he was preparing himself physically for the long, tough days ahead in India and has a good team around him. "I am very conscious that we should not over focus on the World Cup match though," he said.



Foto: Geir Olsen / NTB scanpix

His manager Espen Agdestein is quick to add that life is "usual" and "my job is to make every day for Magnus as it normally is before any major tournament." Carlsen is playing a lot of golf, tennis and beach volleyball as part of his fitness routine. Jon Ludvig Hammer is helping the World No. 1 with the chess bit.


Foto: Geir Olsen / NTB scanpix


The World No. 1 has an India trip lined up followed by a short tournament in the US. "I'm most curious about how awful and hot it will be. We will also familiarise ourselves with the city, the sounds and the people there. We will also identify which hotel we will be staying," says Carlsen. 


Foto: Geir Olsen / NTB scanpix


Carlsen has also posted photos of himself on his Facebook page. Here is Carlsen's status post accompanying the following photograph.

A lot of press appeared in Kragerø today. They filmed me making this golf putt!