Anand splits point with Grischuk, just a draw away from world crown

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Mexico City, Sep 29 (UNI) World number one and championship leader Viswanathan Anand is just one draw away from clinching world crown after drawing Alexander Grischuk in a long 13th round game of the World Chess Championship here.

Anand, survived a scare and saved a losing battle to escape with a draw after 72 moves against the Russian Grandmaster.

The Indian Grandmaster is still a full point advantage over second placed Boris Gelfand and required only a draw against Peter Leko in the final round to walk away with the title and 360,000 dollar (approximately Rs. 1.5 crore) prize money.

Palying with black pieces, Anand was fast and furious, taking just 40 minutes to make 33 moves while Grischuk analysed each move and took more than an hour and 50 minutes to complete the same.

Anand used his favourite weapon Leningrad variation with 5... h6, and played the same line as he used against Aronian in Round Two which he won.

However, Grischuk went all out to trouble Anand with his tactical moves and created some advantage in his favour in the middle game.

Grischuk, though, could not capitalise on the advantage despite Anand commiting a blunder after the 40th move. The Indian had to work hard to undo the mistake and succeeded.

Anand's black rook on the b-file with king protecting kingside pawns kept Grischuk surely on his heels.

Alter a long 72 moves with only two Kings remaining on the board, both the players decided to agree for a draw. The Indian maestro gave a fantastic resistance to save the game.

''Actually after move 40 when I blundered, I manage to calm down, and realised that I have not spoiled anything, probably it was the most important moment just to realise that nothing has happened. It is funny that you blunder and infact it has no real consequences,'' Anand told UNI after his drawn game.

''Ok. Some time you need a little bit of luck and I am really lucky that this position of King on c4 and Rook on d3 and f4 normally you know that once the base pawns are protected there is nothing you can do. It is funny we end up with such a position,'' he added.

Anand will have white pieces against Leko in the final round.

In other games, Boris Gelfand and Vladimir Kramnik signed peace after 26 moves while Levon Aronian and Peter Svidler also played out a drawn game.

The only decisive game of the penultimote round was between Peter Leko and Alexander Morozevich. Leko, who lost to Kramnik in the 12th round, played a much better game to beat Morozevich in just 33 moves.

Round 13 Results: Alexander Grischuk (5.5) drew with Viswanathan Anand (8.5) Levon Aronian (6) drew with Peter Svidler (5.5) Boris Gelfand (7.5) drew with Vladimir Kramnik (7) Peter Leko (6.5) beat Alexander Morozevich (5.5) Final Round Pairings: Viswanathan Anand vs Peter Leko Peter Svidler vs Alexander Grischuk Alexander Morozevich vs Boris Gelfand Vladimir Kramnik vs Levon Aronian UNI

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