World Chess Championship matches have always had a special flavor when they are contested by players who have held the title at one time or the other. The World Chess Championship 2010 at Sofia which started on Saturday 24th April, a day later than originally scheduled, has reigning Champion Viswanathan Anand of India taking on Veselin Topalov of Bulgaria.
The first game of the World Chess Championship match in Sofia was a shocker: in just about an hour Anand was in a lost position. In the middle of some obvious preparation Anand started to think and blundered with 23…Kf7?? which was almost certainly as a result of trying to remember his preparation rather than studying the position.
Topalov, Veselin (2805) – Anand, Viswanathan (2787) [D87]
WCh Sofia BUL (1), 2010-02-24
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 d5 4.cxd5 Nxd5 5.e4 Nxc3 6.bxc3 Bg7 7.Bc4 c5 8.Ne2 Nc6 9.Be3 0-0 10.0-0 Na5 11.Bd3 b6 12.Qd2 e5 13.Bh6 cxd4 14.Bxg7 Kxg7 15.cxd4 exd4 16.Rac1 Qd6 17.f4 f6 18.f5 Qe5 19.Nf4 g5 20.Nh5+ Kg8 21.h4 h6 22.hxg5 hxg5 23.Rf3 Kf7?? 24.Nxf6!! Kxf6 25.Rh3! Rg8 26.Rh6+ Kf7 27.Rh7+ Ke8 28.Rcc7 Kd8 29.Bb5! Qxe4 30.Rxc8+ 1 – 0 (view game)
In the first round Viswanathan Anand suffered a painful defeat, casting doubt on his chances at a title defense. So how did he reply: by turtling up and licking his wounds? Not at all – in a dangerous, fighting game the World Champion outplayed challenger Veselin Topalov in positional masterpiece to level the score at 1-1
Anand showed that a king never loses his majesty, and in a Catalan, the World Champion promptly outplayed Topalov, his challenger, in a positional masterpiece to set the score straight. The betmakers will once again have to reset their predictions as the match starts by living up up to its expectatations with punch and counterpunch
Anand,V (2787) – Topalov,V (2805) [E04]
WCh Sofia BUL (2), 2010-04-25
1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 d5 4. g3 dxc4 5. Bg2 a6 6. Ne5 c5 7. Na3 cxd4 8. Naxc4 Bc5 9. O-O O-O 10. Bd2 Nd5 11. Rc1 Nd7 12. Nd3 Ba7 13. Ba5 Qe7 14. Qb3 Rb8 15. Qa3 Qxa3 16. bxa3 N7f6 17. Nce5 Re8 18. Rc2 b6 19. Bd2 Bb7 20. Rfc1 Rbd8 21. f4 Bb8 22. a4 a5 23. Nc6 Bxc6 24. Rxc6 h5 25. R1c4 Ne3 26. Bxe3 dxe3 27. Bf3 g6 28. Rxb6 Ba7 29. Rb3 Rd4 30. Rc7 Bb8 31. Rc5 Bd6 32. Rxa5 Rc8 33. Kg2 Rc2 34. a3 Ra2 35. Nb4 Bxb4 36. axb4 Nd5 37. b5 Raxa4 38. Rxa4 Rxa4 39. Bxd5 exd5 40. b6 Ra8 41. b7 Rb8 42. Kf3 d4 43. Ke4 1 – 0 (view game)
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