Defending champion Viswanathan Anand lost to world No.1 Magnus Carlsen after 58 moves in a gruelling fifth game of the World Chess Championship in Chennai on Friday.
Carlsen registered the first victory of the tournament after the previous four games all ended in draws. The match went on for over five and a half hours. Anand was playing with black pieces while Carlsen held the advantage, playing with white.
With seven games still to come in the 12-game affair, Carlsen leads Anand by 3 points to 2. One point is awarded for a victory while half-a-point is given to each player for every drawn game.
Two weak moves at a crucial juncture by Anand gave Carlsen the opportunity he was eagerly waiting for.
In the end, faced with Carlsen's two passed pawns, Anand was not in a position to prevent one of them from morphing into a queen and Anand threw in the towel.
In the post-match press conference, Carlsen said the first to win a game does not mean he would win the match.
"The game started as an English opening but got transposed to a different line," Grandmaster S. Arun Prasad told IANS.
"On Carlsen's sixth move Nc3, the game entered into an unknown position. Carlsen must have done that to surprise Anand," India's number two-ranked Grandmaster P. Harikrishna said.
Both players had pawn weaknesses but white pieces enjoyed greater activity.
The game progressed steadily with experts saying that Carlsen enjoyed a minor edge over the champion when the number of moves were 30 in hand.
"Carlsen has brought the game to a position where only he could win or the game would end in a draw," Harikrishna said.
On his 45th move, Anand went in favour of giving a check to the white king with his rook which cost him one pawn.
From then onwards, it was all downhill for the reigning champion.
The next game between the duo will be played Saturday evening.
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 Kc5 58. h4 Kd5 1-0
(with IANS inputs)