"Always make a total effort, even when the odds are against you." - Arnold Palmer

Monday, 28 May 2012

Game 12 - Draw! Match Ends Up In Sudden Death

Match Anand-Gelfand continued by game 12. Anand again employed 1.e4 and again avoided main lines of Open Sicilian by Rossolimo system.
Anand this time chose for 5.d3 followed by 6.b3 met by Gelfand's novelty 6...d6. Then Anand decided for first sortie in the centre playing 7.e5 and in some lines he perhaps planned to sacrifice this pawn. When Gelfand placed his Knight on g6, Anand came up with second sortie 8.h4 and harassed the Knight which more or less forced Gelfand to take the pawn e5. Black's problem at this time became his pawn structure and mainly his light-squared Bishop docked on c8-square with unclear future. On the other hand, White plan was quite obvious, to manoeuvre his Knight on  e4 a create pressure against c5-pawn. 
In this moment Gelfand decided to return a pawn playing 10...c4. This move is difficult to assess but obviously Black wanted to get the Bishop in the game playing Ba6. Soon afterwards Queens were swapped on d5 which improved Black's pawn structure for the prize of pawn. However, Black completed development and his two Bishop and strong solid centre was enough to ensure some compensation for him.
Later Anand decided to exchange dark-squared Bishop which led not only to drawish-looking ending but also to equal position and no wonder draw was agreed in move 22.

So the match finished draw in classical chess. Tomorrow is day off and the battle will continue with tie-break on Wednesday.

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