Wijk Aan Zee:World Champion Viswanathan Anand will face tournament leader Magnus Carlsen in the 11th round of the Group 'A' of Corus International Chess tournament here.
With just three rounds remaining in the category-20 tournament, Anand faces a daunting task at hand as he is currently a full point behind Carlsen and only a final spurt can help the Indian for a pedestal finish after the third and final rest day.
With two victories, a lone loss against Teimour Radjabov of Azerbaijan in round one and seven draws thus far, the Indian ace is facing the heat in his first tournament of the year.
Carlsen, on the other hand, has been steady and lucky at the same time and given the way he won his previous game against Loek van Wely of Holland from a completely lost position, many experts have already opined that it is champion's luck.
With Carlsen on 6.5, Levon Aronian of Armenia is in close pursuit of the title he won jointly last year on 6 points. Anand, Vladimir Kramnik of Russia, Michael Adams of England, Vassily Ivanchuk of Ukraine and Radjabov are next in the standings with 5.5 points apiece and the battle for the title is now only between these players in the 14-player round-robin tournament.
Given the standings, India's Test bet seems to be Grandmaster Parimarjan Negi in Group 'C'.
Parimarjan has done quite well in the event after an indifferent start with two losses and is currently joint second on 6.5 points behind leader Caruana Fabiano of Italy who is on 7.
The Tata-sponsored youngster next meets Dmitry Reinderman of Holland before taking on E Grivas of Hungary and his last round duel with Caruana should be the championship decider according to the pundits who give the Italian still more chances to win than anyone else.
Grandmaster P Harikrishna has spoiled many good positions in the tournament already and he will be satisfied if he can notch a couple of victories in the remaining three games. In the next round Harikrishna is slated to play Ivan Cheparinov of Bulgaria.
As things stand in 'B' group, Sergei Movsesian of Slovakia seems to be running away with the title here with 7.5 points already in the bag from first 10 rounds.
Sharing the second spots are Etienne Bacrot of France and Nigel Short of England while another half point adrift is Russian Ian Nepomniachtchi. Harikrishna is currently joint fifth in the event and can possibly finish in top three with an improved performance in the remaining games.
The other Indian contestant in the 'B' group, Koneru Humpy has not had a great tournament thus far and she too would be keen to finish on a positive note.
The result for Humpy have been quite unlike her thus with one victory, a couple of losses and seven draws. In the 11th round Humpy plays against Daniel Stellwagen of Holland.