Showdown with Kramnik not on Anand's agenda

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='' class='caption'> World Champion Viswanathan Anand said on Friday that next year he would be focussing on other tournaments than with with former champion Kramnik.

Updated: December 24, 2007 18:43 IST
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New Delhi:

World Champion Viswanathan Anand said on Friday that next year he would be focussing on tournaments like Linares and Corus Chess Championships rather than this much awaited showdown with former champion Russian Vladimir Kramnik in the World Championship match.

"It is a big challenge and I will have to train hard but right now I am only focusing on the first three months. I will decide on the preparations for the match only after that," Anand told reporters here Friday.

The World Champion was speaking on the sidelines of the felicitation ceremony of the winners of the NIIT's Mind Champions challenge chess tournament.

Anand and Kramnik will square off for the world title next October in a 12-game world championship match from Oct 11-30 at Bonn, Germany. The match will have a prize fund of 1.5 million euros (about $ 2.1 million).

In September, Anand won the World Championship in Mexico City while Kramnik finished second in the double round-robin event.

Anand also said that he was impressed with the current players and had words of praise for K Sasikiran and P Harikrishna.

"These guys have done well and have shown a lot of promise," he said.

Anand also met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in the morning.

"We discussed a lot of things, including how sports can be promoted at schools to identify young prodigies," he said.

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