Anand opens defence of his title with a win

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Morelia, Mexico, Feb 16 (UNI) World Champion Viswanathan Anand opened his campaign with a facile win over Spain's Alexei Shirov in the first round of the Morelia-Linares Chess tournament here.

However, the defending champion who won while playing with black pieces, had to share the lead at the top of the table with two others, former World Champion from Bulgaria Veselin Topalov who beat Armenia's Levon Aronian and Hungary's Peter Leko who defeated Azerbaijan's Teimour Radjabov.

Playing the Sicilian Nazdorf, Anand went for the Gelfand variation that took Shirov by surprise.

Shirov was looking for counter play when Anand sacrificed an exchange. The Indian then foxed his rival with his attacking moves and the Spainard caved in under pressure. The game lasted just 30 moves.

The Category-21 tournament is being played between top eight players of the World in double round-robin format.

In the last match of opening day, Norway's Magnus Carlsen and Vassily Ivanchuk of Ukraine played a draw.

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