Miskolc, Hungary:World Champion Viswanathan Anand is sitting pretty with a full point lead and it will be a herculean task for Hungarian Peter Leko to strike the right chord in the second half of the rapid match here.
A win in the second game gave the Indian ace lead in this eight-games match and it seems that Leko's hunt for an elusive victory in the match against a world class player has continued since he won the first match way back in 2006 against former World Champion Anatoly Karpov of Russia.
In 2007, Leko had gone down to Vladimir Kramnik of Russia while last year Norwegian prodigy Magnus Carlsen had proved stronger than the Russian in the rapid chess format.
Anand, widely regarded as the best rapid chess player in the history, only had a momentary scare in the fourth game of the match when the Speed King came under big pressure.
Having withstood that, Anand has put enormous pressure on Leko again as the Hungarian first needs to win a game to equalise and only then he can start thinking about winning on his home soil against the world champion.
The first game witnessed Anand on top a bit with his black pieces and in the second the Indian converted his advantage with awesome ease.
The third game of the match wasa rather tame affair ending in a draw while in the fourth Leko showed his sparks and it was a miss in the end resulting in a draw.
The high point from the technical perspective has been Anand's choice of Grunfeld defense with black pieces that he has employed after a seven year gap. Leko is himself considered a great expert of this opening but that has not deterred Anand in any ways.
According to the experts of the game, this psychological ploy has worked for Anand as Leko was definitely not expecting it.
Last year in the world championship match against Kramnik too Anand's choice of opening when he changed gears to Queen Pawn move on his first turn turned out to be a real coup and in the end it was an easy victory for the champion.
Leko has appeared a bit unsettled and will have to do something fast to stage a recovery.
For the records, Anand just needs to draw the remaining four games to register victory in his first match against Leko. After the sole rest day, the battle resumes again late Saturday night.