World Champion Viswanathan Anand fell prey to an inexplicable blunder in a perfectly balanced position and went down to Michael Adams of England in the sixth round of London Chess Classic on Saturday.
After a fine victory in the previous round against Gawain Jones of England, the Indian ace survived some anxious moments in the middle game before equalising completely and just when the experts had given up declaring the game a ‘sure draw’, Anand lost track, and lost in no time.
Magnus Carlsen of Norway stretched his lead to three points by defeating highest-ranked woman Judit Polgar of Hungary. Carlsen took his tally to a whopping 16 points out of a possible eighteen, and the world number one is sitting pretty with just two games to come for him.
The victory over Polgar also took Carlsen to another peak in live ratings where the chart now reads him at 2864 points.
Russian Vladimir Kramnik remained on the second spot following a draw with Levon Aronian of Armenia. Kramnik inched himself up to 12 points and the gap is only growing between him and Carlsen.
Michael Adams jumped to third spot again following his lucky victory and Hikaru Nakamura dropped to fourth spot with eight points in all. Anand, on six points, is now fifth, a point ahead of Luke McShane, who scored his first win in the tournament by defeating compatriot Gawain Jones.
Adams neutralised Anand’s opening preparation without much ado and got the pair of bishops to start pressing for more. Anand was precise in defence once under pressure and posting a knight in the middle of the board, the world champion got counter play.
However, disaster struck soon after the first time control. Anand blundered to find his king caught in a checkmate web in merely a couple of moves. Adams thought for quite some time but eventually played the killer sequence.