World champion Viswanathan Anand played out his sixth draw on the trot, signing peace with Francisco Vallejo Pons of Spain in the sixth round of the fifth Final Masters chess championship here.
The second leg of the championship, which got underway after a week’s break, was not expected to be very promising for Anand as he plays three black games out of five here and the trend continued as Vallejo Pons found an easy draw.
The soccer-like scoring system that gives three points for a win and one for a draw has seen Anand gather six points from as many games (no win, no loss).
Meanwhile, World No. 1 Magnus Carlsen of Norway scored a much-needed victory over leader Fabiano Caruana of Italy. In the first leg at Sao Paulo, Caruana had defeated Carlsen in the opener and then registered two more wins.
In another game in the six-player double round-robin tournament, Sergey Karjakin of Russia drew with Levon Aronian of Armenia and the equation now suggests that the tournament is wide open thanks to Carlsen’s magnificent victory.
With four rounds to go, Caruana stays in front on 11 points with Carlsen close behind on nine. Aronian is now third on eight, while Anand is fourth with six points.
The Indian is followed by Vallejo Pons and Karjakin, who both have four points apiece from four draws.
The Indian ace is expected to fire when he has white games and even though the point gap looks more, a couple of victories can bridge the gap very soon.
Sixth round: Francisco Vallejo Pons (4) drew with V. Anand (6); Karjakin (4) drew with Aronian (8); Carlsen (9) bt Caruana (11).
Keywords: Viswanathan Anand