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It's official: Anand is World No 1

Under pressure from AICF and fans, FIDE agrees to amend its rankings list, reports B Shrikant.

india Updated: Apr 02, 2007 04:00 IST
B Shrikant

Chess is a complicated game but this should have been a cinch.

Going by performance, Viswanathan Anand should have been ranked World No 1 when the Federation Internationale des Echecs (FIDE), the game's world governing body, released the quarterly world rating list for April on Saturday.

But the list put Veselin Topalov (Bulgaria) at the top with 2,791 ELO points and Anand at No 2 with 2,778 points, conveniently ignoring their performances in the Morelia/Linaresh Super Grandmaster tournament that ended on March 10. Four other tournaments that ended around the same time were taken into account while calculating the ratings.

Anand had gained many points after his performance in Morelia/Linares, while Topalov had finished last and was expected to lose points.

FIDE, however, seems to have realised its mistake — albeit under pressure from the All India Chess Federation (AICF) and after Anand's fans protested on various chess websites.

Speaking for Anand, who is playing in the German League, his wife Aruna said FIDE's rating administrator, Casto Abundo, had confirmed the list would be revised soon. "We truly hope that FIDE will revise the list and this unfortunate matter will be put to rest," she told HT in an e-mail on Sunday.

Contacted in Elista (Russia) some time later, Abundo said the ratings would be revised on Monday. "We have made the corrections and the revised ratings will be released tomorrow and Anand will be the new World No 1."

Which is how it should have been in the first place.

First Published: Apr 02, 2007 02:38 IST