Anand loses sixth game to Carlsen, trails by one point at halfway stage

Sochi (Russia), Nov 15: Viswanathan Anand failed to capitalise on an optical blunder by Magnus Carlsen and went on to lose the sixth game of the World Chess Championship, here today.

Carlsen, thanks to the lucky victory, surged ahead in the match for the second time and now leads the latch by 3.5-2.5 at exactly the half way stage with six games still remaining. At the same point last year.

Viswanathan Anand

The Norwegian had taken a two points lead at this point in the match and it was all effectively over for Anand. The missed opportunity, which could have turned the tide of the match came in a situation that was already worse for the Indian chess wizard.

It was Sicilian Kann by Anand, a shocker in itself as the last time this opening featured in a world championship match was during the Kasparov-Karpov match in the 1980s when mostly it was the Gary’s gambit on Kasparov's mind.

Surely, Carlsen got a stronghold on the position in quick time and gave little hope to Anand which was a clear indication that Anand had gone for a wrong choice. The queens got exchanged pretty early in the opening giving Carlsen a fine advantage to fight for victory.

The blunder by Carlsen was, in fact, quite uncalled for as he had another move to reach the same position which would have reached similar result in the game.

When asked about if he kept a poker face realising his mistake, Carlsen said, "I was not poker faced at all. I could have reached the same position via a different move order but I made the mistake."

Anand on his part was quite disturbed at the outcome during the press conference and Fabiano Caruana’s tweet that 'Vishy won't be able to sleep tonite' seems apt for the Indian ace.

"Missing out on a winning opportunity is one thing, but Anand simply capitulated once under pressure," said Grandmaster Abhijeet Gupta who was watching the match from his home In India.

Gupta also noted that Anand could have proposed a better fight towards the end but simply lost when put under pressure. Coming on a series of good results in the match this is a shocker for Anand at the half way stage. Unfortunately there is another black game coming for the Indian that does not improve things.

All that Anand needs to do is think right and come back in his best fighting move. After the seventh game, the Indian gets to play three white games in the last five. Carlsen for now, seems far ahead in the match.


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