Independent Pursuits: Chess
Tuesday 02 February 1999
By defeating Topalov in the last round, Anand moved himself up to an undefeated 9.5, just half a point behind Kasparov and a superb result in its own right, netting a performance rating of 2,840 - compared to Kasparov's 2,874 - which would have been enough to win almost any tournament in history.
Vladimir Kramnik was the only other unbeaten player but won "only" three games for third on 8. The other scores were Ivan Sokolov, Piket, Shirov and Timman 7, Ivanchuk and Svidler 6.5, Topalov 6, Kasimdzhanov 5, Van Wely 4.5, Yermolinsky 4 and Reinderman 3.
Despite the high incidence of decisive games - 41/91 - one of the most interesting was this draw between the two unbeaten players. 19 ...Nh3+!? was Kramnik's improvement on 19 ...Re6 with which he lost against Alexei Shirov in in the European Club Cup a fortnight ago. His very crude idea was to get his queen to the long white diagonal to deliver mate.
Anand's 21 c4 was extraordinary but if 21 Nb3 Rb6 22 Qc5 d4! 23 c4 (23 cxd4 Qa8+ 24 d5 Rd8 25 Nd4 Rxd5 26 Qc4 Kh8 27 Nf3 Rd2+ 28 Bxd2 Qxf3 mate!) 23 ...Qc8! 24 Qd5+ Kh8 25 Kf1! Rd8 26 Qg2 Qe6 gives a lot of play. 21 ...Kh8!? looked dangerous but Kramnik didn't like 22 c5. At the end, Black must take the perpetual.
White: Viswanathan Anand
Black: Vladimir Kramnik
1 e4 e5
2 Nf3 Nf6
3 Nxe5 d6
4 Nf3 Nxe4
5 d4 d5
6 Bd3 Nc6
7 0-0 Be7
8 Re1 Bg4
9 c3 f5
10 Qb3 0-0
11 Nbd2 Na5
12 Qa4 Nc6
13 Bb5 Bh4
14 g3 Bf6
15 Bxc6 bxc6
16 Qxc6 Re8
17 Ne5 Bxe5
18 dxe5 Ng5
19 f4 Nh3+!?
20 Kg2 Rb8
21 c4 dxc4
22 Nxc4 Qd3
23 Ne3 Rxb2+!
24 Bxb2 Qd2+
25 Kh1 Nf2+
26 Kg1 Nh3+
27 Kh1 Nf2+
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