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Viswanathan Anand held by Adams, stays in contention for London chess title

The draw against Michael Adams , which was Viswanathan Anand’s second draw in four games, has kept the five-time world champion in contention for the London Chess Classic title.

other sports Updated: Dec 14, 2016 12:06 IST
The draw against Michael Adams has kept Viswanathan Anand in contention for the London Chess Classic title.
The draw against Michael Adams has kept Viswanathan Anand in contention for the London Chess Classic title.(AP)

Five-time world champion Viswanathan Anand had to settle for a draw with British number one Michael Adams in the fourth round of the London Chess Classic.

The tide could have turned differently but it was a difficult chance that Anand missed in his calculation.

However, the second draw in four games has kept the Indian ace in contention.

American Hikaru Nakamura continued to be in top gear after a first round debacle and grinded down Veselin Topalov of Bulgaria in what was again the only decisive game of the day. During the only decisive game of the third round, Nakamura had beaten Anand.

The peaceful results on other boards helped tour and tournament leader Wesley So of United States cement his place at the top of the table with three points out of a possible four. Fabiano Caruana of United States, Vladimir Kramnik of Russia, Levon Aronian of Armenia and Nakamura now share the second spot with 2.5 points apiece while Anand slipped to joint sixth spot with two points along side Anish Giri of Holland.

It would have been a perfect game but for one moment when Anand could not spot what most of the humans would have missed. The computer suggested an ingenious resource for white in a cramped position that Anand overruled in his on-board analysis and that was the end of speculation for the chess pundits.

Read | Why Magnus Carlsen is the greatest, greater than even Viswanathan Anand

For the records Anand enjoyed a minimal advantage out of the opening with his white pieces and eventually settled for a pawn plus endgame.

However, Adams had his counter play in place and the end result was just a level position.

Nakamura seems to be picking up right after the first round when he lost to Wesley. The American was in all-in mode as he went after Topalov’s queen and won it at the cost of two pieces. Topalov had his chances for survival but was a tad slow in picking up the best moves that suited Nakamura perfectly.

With his second win, Nakamura is the one who is likely to go after Wesley.

Like Anand, Kramnik also missed out on an opportunity to go in lead as he failed to convert his extra pawn in an endgame against Maxime Vachier-Lagrave of France.

It was a tense affair after an irregular opening that gave Kramnik some chances and the Russian could have done better than the end result.

In other games of the day, Wesley So played out a draw with Anish Giri while Fabiano Caruana signed peace with Aronian.