Here’s the evidence: Two adult tickets – 11th December 2010. Anand, the moment of truth…and yes, this will be my second too. Watch this space for the photos…[click the image for a larger view] Anand is my favourite and I do look forward to seeing him in action. Edit: Sadly, I couldn’t attend the event due to illness!
Viswanathan Anand became the undisputed world chess champion in 2007 and has since defended the title twice in matches with Vladimir Kramnik in 2008 and Veselin Topalov in 2010. In an age when more and more players are playing professional chess, with infinitely more sophisticated training resources and information available to them, his achievement in defending the top spot from all comers is as impressive as any of the successes of his championship predecessors.
Vishy, as he is affectionately known to colleagues and fans, is a hero in his native India, putting him on a par with the nation’s top cricketers. From Tamil Nadu, he was taught the game by his mother when he was six and made rapid progress. His intuitive sight of the board and super-fast speed on the move marked him out as a future champion from his mid-teens. He became national champion in 1985, world junior champion in 1987 and a grandmaster in 1988.
Anand joined the chess super-elite in the early 1990s and he qualified to play Garry Kasparov in the PCA World Championship of 1995. Against all the odds he took the lead in the match in the ninth game but eventually ran out the loser by 7½-10½. Vishy pursued the FIDE version of the title and had a near miss in 1999 against Anatoly Karpov despite some unfortunate tournament scheduling which required him to play the final match immediately after a gruelling qualification event. In 2000 he won the FIDE version of the title in Tehran and held it until 2002.
Following the reunification of the chess world championship in 2006, Anand won a world championship match-tournament in 2007 ahead of the reigning world champion Vladimir Kramnik. Though the latter graciously ceded all claim on the title to his rival, many purists amongst pundits and fans longed to see the championship decided under traditional matchplay rules. Their wish was granted in 2008 when Anand and Kramnik played a match in Bonn. The Indian made no mistake, defeating his Russian opponent fair and square, and thus becoming only the second world champion ever to have won the world title in both tournament and match formats. Anand duly defended his title in a match in 2010 against world number two Veselin Topalov, on his opponent’s home ground in Bulgaria. His next challenge is due in 2012, when it is hoped that the match will be played in London.
Some past world champions have become known to the general public for their off-board eccentricities and personal rivalries but not so Viswanathan Anand. Throughout his career he has shown himself to be the perfect Indian gentleman who dispels attempts to provoke or upset him with a disarming smile. Indeed, one of the major difficulties facing his rivals is that he is simply impossible to dislike! For example, when preparing for his 2010 world title match, his behind-the-scenes assistants included the previous champion Vladimir Kramnik, whom Anand had defeated two years earlier, and Magnus Carlsen. With the charm of Capablanca, the industriousness of Botvinnik and the natural talent of Kasparov, Anand will be a hard man to beat in London in 2010. He lives in Spain with his wife Aruna, who is also his manager.
Please click HERE for the Official site and to read about the other players.
Chess is Free for Children at the London Classic 2010 [Read on the link of the Official site more about it – on their homepage]