Vishwanathan Anand roots for Spain in football WC | delhi | Hindustan Times
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Vishwanathan Anand roots for Spain in football WC

delhi Updated: Jul 06, 2010 14:15 IST
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As the World Cup Football nears its final with an impending semifinal clash between Spain and Germany, chess grandmaster Viswanathan Anand, an avid fan of the beautiful game is rooting for Spain, a country he calls his second home.

"I am closely watching Spain. I like their style of play," Anand told PTI during a recent visit here.

The grandmaster who catches the FIFA World Cup fever on television says he was also keenly following Argentina and its star player Lionel Messi before the South American team crashed out to Germany in the quarterfinal stage.

"Spain are the current European champions and it looks a little less difficult for them to make it a double," says Anand.

Beginning his career as a chess player at the age of six, Anand won his first national title with a record cent per cent score of 9/9 points in 1983-84.

His level of concentration and composure in the game could well be a model of inspiration for many but the secret to his constant diligence of checkmating his opponents, says the chess wizard is "focusing on looking cool."

"I focus on looking cool, whether I am cool inside that is another story," Anand told PTI.

"It's not that easy to appear cool during the matches. But it is very important to remain calm and stay focused on your opponent and watch out for his body language in a match. One has to have a feeling of what the person across is playing out. It helps a lot," says the grandmaster.

The chess ace, fresh from the glorious triumph over his Bulgarian opponent Veselin Topalov in a marathon encounter in Sofia to retain World Champion title for third time in a row, is currently cooling his heels before preparing for a series of tournaments later in the year.

With this win, Anand says he has accomplished something which no other chess great, not even Garry Kasparov has done.

He asserted his supremacy by winning the title in every format of tournament -- knock-out, round-robin and two matchplay formats.

The Indian genius, after playing exhaustive chess for over three decades says he still vies for one more world trophy in his kitty and is keen to regain the Numero Uno position.

"Well from 2007 till late 2008, I was world number one... last year (Magnus) Carlsen had a dream year, but my position has improved, I am just four points behind Topolov. I am at number three, so it will be great to get back to number one.