For Viswanathan Anand, the wounds of the world championship defeat have healed, and the emotional turmoil has settled. Now, with uncluttered mind and renewed vigour, the five-time world champion is keen to return the favour to Magnus Carlsen when they meet again later this year in another summit clash.
“I have a fairly good idea what I want to change (about my game), and what went wrong (in Chennai). I will choose my team accordingly. I am waiting for the bid (for the world championship match venue) and I will have a clearer idea after that,” said Anand at a promotional event here on Wednesday.
Anand, with over 10 billion games in his database, explained how he had lost the plot against Carlsen in November last year.
“Many errors had crept into my approach to playing chess. I was getting reliant on computers...not that I did not realise it, but it happened like that. That was the time when I needed guidance,” he said.
Anand admitted he was trying to avoid thinking about his defeat to Carlsen even though it was impossible to get rid of that thought.
The 44-year-old, who took a three-month break from chess to regain his hunger, expressed hope that his victory at the Candidates would boost his morale.
“In Mexico (world championship in 2007) I had an identical experience. It was a great result and I will treasure it for a long time. I hope to carry forward that feeling,” he said.
Anand said he is determined to produce a solid performance against Carlsen in November (when the world championship match is tentatively scheduled). “It will be a different match, and I will think about how to give it a different twist,” he said.
Asked whether there would be less pressure on him playing outside India, Anand said: “If you are playing at home, it only amplifies what you are going through. The problem (last time) was not the location.”
Anand said he would focus on events in Corsica, Dubai and Geneva in the run-up to the world championship match.
“Dubai and Geneva are rapid events. Last year I hardly had any rapid event. This year I am compensating for this,” he said.
After the famous Kasparov-Karpov rivalry in the late 1980s, this will be the first time when two opponents will meet in consecutive world championship matches. Does Anand want to extend his fight with Carlsen beyond 2014?
“Who knows,” he said. “This will be just the second time when we meet. They (Kasparov and Karpov) were constant companions for four-five years. For the time being, I want to be (Mikhail) Botvinnik (who was a world champion even in his early 50s),” said Anand.