Paris: How does one beat Vishy Anand in a world championship match? Since 2007, he has fended off challenges from three different players – Vladimir Kramnik, Veselein Topalov and Boris Gelfand.
All the three matches were really close yet Anand managed to emerge on top. But now he has a completely different opponent. At 22, Magnus Carlsen is almost half of Anand’s age and is currently the World No 1 and has achieved the highest ELO rating for any player in the history of the sport.
Kramnik, who himself was a world champion for seven years and had achieved the distinction of beating Garry Kasparov (the only instance that Kasparov had been beaten in a World Championship match), believes that age and motivation are the biggest advantages for Carlsen against Anand.
"Chess is not like football or other sports but still when you are much older than your opponent, it works against you. (At 37) I consider myself to be quite old. Vishy is even older than me. So that makes it a bit difficult for him. Magnus has much more energy, more motivation as he hasn’t been a world champion yet. Those are his biggest advantages," Kramnik told Firstpost at the Alekhine Memorial tournament in Paris. He also added that Magnus was probably the toughest opponent possible.
Kramnik said that in order to retain the title, Anand needs to be more relaxed during the match.
"Vishy shouldn't think about the outcome. He should just play and enjoy and try to show his best. If he is relaxed and doesn't get too tense, he can win. However, lately, he is a little bit tense and nervous. He should try to be calmer and take it easy," the Russian world No 3 remarked.
Kramnik predicted that the match would be really close.
"A world championship match is always played by players who are very close. It cannot be otherwise. Magnus is very strong but Vishy is incredibly experienced in matches and he is a fantastic player. If he gets in best shape, he is capable of beating Magnus," he added.
On how Carlsen can beat Anand, Kramnik, who had narrowly lost out to Carlsen at the Candidates tournament, said that the best way was to deeply analyse the opponent’s recent games and build a strategy.
"Quite a lot depends on preparation, not only related to chess but also psychological," he said.
When asked as to pick up his favourite in the match, Kramnik said that it’s too close to call.
"I want to see a good match. If both prepare well, it is pretty equal. Generally speaking, I would like a player from my generation to do better. But this is nothing against Carlsen," Kramnik said.
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Updated Date: May 01, 2013 10:18:13 IST