No Major Surprises in Team Viswanathan Anand Ahead of World Chess Championship Clash

Indian ace Viswanathan Anand has reposed faith in his team and has only omitted Hungarian Peter Leko from the list of people who accompany him at Sochi ahead during the World Chess Championship matches.

Updated: November 08, 2014 11:29 IST
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Vishwanathan Anand and Magnus Carlsen during a match
File Photo: Vishwanathan Anand and Magnus Carlsen during a match.


Sochi, Russia: Five-time world champion Viswanathan Anand named Grzegorz Gazewski of Poland as the lone new inclusion in his team, putting to end speculations that there were big changes done.

"(Krishnan) Sasikiran, (Radoslav) Wojtaszek and Gajewski," Anand said in the pre-match press conference here. (Also read: Time for revenge as Anand eyes 6th title)

It may be recalled that both Sasikiran and Wojtaszek were there the last time around too along with Hungarian Peter Leko and Sandipan Chanda when Anand had lost the crown in Chennai almost one year back.

The Indian ace has reposed faith in his team and has only omitted Leko from the list of people who accompany him here. Chanda has been travelling with Anand to man events and it's clear that he has another role defined somewhere in the support system.

Gajewski hails from Poland like Wojtaszek and is known as a fierce competitor and someone who carves a niche for himself especially in less known positions.

If the Polish's inclusions sent any warning signals to Carlsen, he did not show it as when he was asked the same question he replied without the slightest flinch - "the Dane and the Hammer! The reigning champion was referring to Peter Heine Nielsen of Denmark, who was a member of team Anand before, and Jon Ludvig Hammer, his trusted friend from his native country."

Both the players meanwhile expressed happiness about the arrangements in general although Carlsen let it be known that 'Glass wall would have been better'.

For the first time in some years, the match will be played without any glass walls and the auditorium has a sitting capacity of 140.

While this will be a change of sorts, the noise levels cannot be ruled out but members of the organising committee indicated that they wanted to create an environment like the 60's.

Anand said he was quite pleased with everything.

"I arrived here a week before and have been doing things quietly. I am now settled and looking forward to the match."

When asked how he resurrected himself, the champion said it just happened.

"I was not happy with the last championship of course and then some time passed, I decided to play chess again and then I won the Candidates," he said.

On being questioned how he would tackle Carlsen this time, the Indian said smilingly, "I am going to try again."

Asked about his wife Aruna Anand, he said, "Well, she is kind of wife! Obviously we are very close. She has been accompanying me to tournaments ever since we got married. Recently our son was born and she doesn't come more often now, it's great to have her here."

The drawing of lots was done during the opening ceremony which was held late on Friday and the first game of the 12-games match begins Saturday afternoon.

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