Viswanathan Anand Draws Again in London Chess Classic, to Meet Michael Adams in the Final Round
Viswanathan Anand faced the Queen
Former world champion Viswanathan Anand settled for his fourth draw in the London Chess Classic and almost went out of title race at the Olympia here on Sunday.
The white pieces against Anish Giri of Holland did not come good for the Indian as the latter equalised leaving the Indian on four points with just one more round to come in the Classic.
Hikaru Nakamura of United States enthused some life in the tournament defeating Michael Adams of England from what was perceived a drawn endgame.
In the other game of the day, Vladimir Kramnik could do little with his white pieces and split the point with Fabiano Caruana of Italy.
With just one round remaining in the six-player round-robin tournament, Giri and Kramnik still share the lead on six points under the soccer-scoring system that gives three points for a win and one for a draw.
The two leaders are now pursued by Nakamura on five points while Anand on four. The Indian shares the fourth spot along with Adams. Caruana with his third draw in four games, is at the bottom of the tables with three points - an unfamiliar situation for the world number two.
Anand faced the Queen's gambit declined from Giri who seemed well-armed again with his opening. The Vienna set up by the Dutch Grandmaster saw Anand sacrifice a pawn early in the opening but the position only remained close to equal as the game progressed.
With his new coach Vladimir Tukmakov, Giri seemed at home even in the complexities that ensued as the game progressed. Anand tried but for once his arsenal did not have an idea to push things forward, as it happened in the game, Giri exchanged pieces at will and reached a drawn rook and pawns endgame whre neither side had any serious chances.
In the final round now, Anand meets local favourite Michael Adams. The Indian ace will have black pieces and only carries an outside chance for a shy at the title if he wins the last game.
Nakamura provided the usual firecrackers on an otherwise dull day again. The American caught Adams in the endgame which should have been a theoretical draw. After the opening, Nakamura enjoyed a small advantage and nurtured it to endgame to cause some problems for Adams with only the rook and pawns remaining on board.
However, Adams missed the thread of the position and mishandled his rook's positioning, ultimately finding in trapped towards the finale.
Kramnik faced an idea introduced by Grandmaster Abhijeet Gupta in the Grunfeld defense and the Russian could not do anything against Caruana in the endgame that ensued. Caruana's trainer, Vladimir Chuchelov was seen happy in the foyer as his ward was never in any troubles in the endgame despite sacrificing a rook temporarily.
Results round four: V Anand (Ind, 4) drew with Anish Giri (Ned, 6); Vladimir Kramnik (Rus, 6) drew with Fabuano Caruana (Ita, 3); Hikaru Nakamura (Usa, 5) beat Michael Adams (Eng, 4).