Thursday, January 30, 2014

Carlsen beats Anand in Zurich blitz!

On 29th Jan 2014 (30th Jan in India as it was well past midnight) Magnus Carlsen did what he is very good at! Winning! He won the blitz tournament with a score of 3/5.
But the going wasn't very smooth for the world champion as he lost his first serious game after becoming the world champion against Fabiano Caruana! It seemed as if the month long practice with the likes of Zuckerberg and Bill Gates hadn't really helped Carlsen positively. After he lost to Caruana, he escaped with draws in worse positions against both Gelfand and Aronian. With just 1/3 nothing was going right for the champ! It was then that Carlsen met his favourite opponent! Vishy Anand!! Such is his confidence against the Indian Superstar that he played Nf3 d5 b3! and mated Vishy in just 21 moves!! This was a much needed boost of confidence for Carlsen as in the last round he again managed to easily outplay Nakamura, a man that he almost always beats!! A score of 3/5 was good enough to get him the 1st place along with Aronian!
These are the final standings.

 Carlsen, M.
 Aronian, L.
 Nakamura, H.
 Caruana, F.
 Anand, V.
 Gelfand, B.

Gelfand who finished last was on 1.5/2 but lost the next 3 games. In his game with Aronian he was completely better but lost the game on time!
Anand after losing to Aronian in round 1, made a draw against Nakamura, and beat Caruana and Gelfand in nice style.
The main reason for conducting the blitz tournament was for deciding who will take the 3 whites in 5 rounds and who will get the 3 blacks in the classical games. As it stands Carlsen Aronian and Nakamura will have the 3 whites as they finished in the top 3.
It was great fun to watch the blitz games and we really shouldn't be analyzing them, but it wouldn't hurt to see how beautifully Carlsen attacked Anand. We can definitely learn a lot from it especially the instructive mistake that Anand made on move 10. Here is the game.

Quite an impressive performance by Carlsen, you must agree!
Today i.e 30th January, the games start at 15.00 hrs Zurich time (i.e 19.30 IST)
This is the pairing for the 1st round:

Round 1Magnus Carlsen-Boris Gelfand
Levon Aronian-Viswanathan Anand
Hikaru Nakamura-Fabiano Caruana
Whenever I see the pairing of Aronian vs Anand, the beautiful Rotlewi-Rubinstein like game between the two players comes to my mind! Will Anand again create such a masterpiece and will Magnus grind down Gelfand as he always does? Its an interesting pairing! Lets see what happens!

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