WCC2013-6: Carlsen wins… two-point bulge

Magnus Carlsen now has opened a healthy lead.
Photo by Anastasia Karlovich.

Magnus Carlsen has opened up a two-point bulge in the sixth game of the World Championships shellshocking fans all over the world… and Anand himself. The past two games lost by Anand in rook endings followed two contentious games where both sides got winning positions.

Today’s loss in a Ruy Lopez Breyer certainly puts Anand on his heels. He was hoping to put in a strong performance today, but got little in the opening. Anand sacrificed a pawn and tried to create a barrier, but Carlsen deftly shifted the focus on the kingside by sacrificing a pawn to free his rook. He penetrated the kingside with his king. With the game hanging by a thread, Anand blundered with 60.Ra4 and Carlsen was able to push the pawn through.

Carlsen continued to press and his persistence was rewarded.
Photo by Anastasia Karlovich.

The press conference was a forgettable one for Anand.
Photo by JM Mahesh.

After the loss, Anand was visibly irritated at the seemingly endless stream of awkward questions. He had just lost a tough battle, had fallen behind two points and had to go immediately to the press conference with emotions still swirling. After a series of lackluster questions, a Norwegian journalist asked how he planned to come back after such a deficit. Anand replied vaguely, “I plan to do my best.” It was obvious that he was not in the mood and his answers were rather abrupt. After a couple of questions, the same journalist then asked him to elaborate on how he would do his best. Anand replied, “Doing your best means doing your best. I don’t know why you don’t understand English!”

Anand’s reaction was totally out of character, but it follows a trend of poor choice of questioning by journalists throughout the entire event. It was with such shock since Anand is normally unflappable, but the pressure is clearly mounting. In the second half of the tournament, Anand will have to find a different approach to his openings. He will undoubtedly get calls from several strong players on possible ideas. Of course, Anand still has to play the moves and losing two drawn ending may point to other issues.

Score: Carlsen 4 Anand 2

Official Site: https://chennai2013.fide.com/
Drum Coverage: https://www.thechessdrum.net/blog/2013/11/06/2013-world-championship-anand-vs-carlsen/

Game #6

Game Analysis – Game #6 (GM Daniel King)


  1. Vishi, one win at this moment will drastically shift the impetus in your favor. For the next six rounds, give the audience something to take pleasure in whether you go down or come back. NEVER GIVE UP!

    1. It will be tough, but I would imagine that he will get additional chances in the next six games. He simply needs to convert them! I also believe too much is being made on the issue of physical fitness. Carlsen is winning because he is persistent and that is a good championship quality.

  2. On a live site, I saw the endgame of game 5 and the computer on that site has a color code for moves as they are made according to whether it thinks they are “strong”, “weak”, “unanalyzed”, etc. It gave me pause that two or three of Anand’s endgame moves were coded “weak” while none of Carslen’s were. Of course, they weren’t necessarily what us sub-GMs would call “weak”. But anyway, I didn’t think it boded well for the rest of the tournament.

    1. Anand has vast knowledge, but I believe he is indecisive. I remember in the game he allowed Carlsen to hold. He said at one point, “I didn’t want it to become too tactical.” Anand 10 or 20 years ago would never say that. In fact, that is what was needed in that position because he had all the tactical advantages.

      1. Agree 100% … the young Anand would have never said that. But, eventually Father Time catches up to us all. I hope he gets at least 1 win, though.

  3. Pingback: Daily Chess News Links November 17, 2013 | blog.chesscafe.com

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