Reports | October 20, 2008 21:53

World Championship: Anand does it again

Kramnik-Anand, Game 5, 0-1Update: Video added.
Viswanathan Anand increased his lead today in the World Championship match after Vladimir Kramnik blundered on move 29. The score is now 3.5-1.5 for Anand.

Who would have thought that Vladimir Kramnik would lose not just one, but two games with the white pieces in this match? It's a rare thing for someone who's considered one of the most solid players around. But it happened today; in what was probably already a slightly worse position for him, he took a pawn that was poisened but the reason why only became clear 11 half-moves later.

By then most journalists in the press room had already rushed downstairs and into the playing hall, to witness the final moments of this game. Not just because our engines had started blinking on our screens, but rather because we had seen the tactic already before - it was the reason why White couldn't take on d4 on move 27.

Soon after one of us actually said that Kramnik "had another chance to make that blunder", the Russian... did it. Somehow it felt not right, but it happened. And there we went, to immortalize the moment Kramnik would resign on photo or video. Which means that on the video of game 5 you too can watch the horror... But first the report on the fifth game:


After resting on Sunday, the players are back, and so is the Semi-Slav...


...and Kramnik confidently re-enters the complicated territory of game three


After 12.exf6 Kramnik's right hand presses the clock...


...and Anand replies with 12...gxf6


Sometimes you accidently catch someone else's flash...


...which might leave an interesting shade

Here's the fifth game of the match:

Match score:

Name Nat. Rtg
Anand IND 2783
Kramnik RUS 2772

Here's our playlist of videos:


(Note that the comments below this article started during our live coverage of the game)

Peter Doggers's picture
Author: Peter Doggers

Founder and editor-in-chief of, Peter is responsible for most of the chess news and tournament reports. Often visiting top events, he also provides photos and videos for the site. He's a 1.e4 player himself, likes Thai food and the Stones.


bas's picture


Kramnik lost again...........................................................

M's picture

unbelievable - did he just miss Ne3?

DoctorSpock's picture

Anand New World Champion !?

ajay's picture

its all

Torben's picture

Kramnik resigns. 29.Nxd4 was a serious blunder!

pieter's picture

mr happy( is what anand means) must be very happy winning again.
somewhere maybe any improvement for white?
2 points back has happened before for Kramnik but not against Anand

must be an enormous blow, lozing same opening twice

Sutton's picture

2 wins as black as well! Match over clearly! This is why matches should be 24 games as of old not 12!

mahi's picture

its bye bye Kramnik......!!!

xtra's picture

a real gift...sort of bad for this match, I want to see great wins, not unfortunate losses...

but I'm sure anand wont mind.

Torben's picture

Well, as a Dane I'm not complaining. Anand's second Peter Nielsen is Danish, so I know who I'm cheering for :-) Peter is an opening expert. I wouldn't be surprised if some of the Slav ideas are coming from him.

Christian's picture

Ok, Vishy?Ǭ¥s strategy is to attack with black and to play positionally with white. I think it?Ǭ¥s a brilliant way of playing against somone as Kr?ɬ°mnik, don?Ǭ¥t you think?

Uddipan's picture

What a sudden collapse?

Kramnik actually seemed to better after Anand missed Qc2, but then it is now clear that he had seen further than I (and, perhaps Kramnik) in laying that devilish Nxd4 trap.

In fact, I was perplexed by Rc3 (although a pretty good square to occupy), given that he was losing the d4 pawn, and ultimately leaving Kramnik with 2 remote connected passers...and then, Ne3!! happened.

I can see here shades of the stunts that Kaspy pulled on Anand in 1995.

Well, what is Kramnik going to respond with now? If he has a hidden weapon, he better show it now. Kramnik's biggest problem is that, with Carlsen on Anand's side, Anand also perhaps has a few mighty weapons still hidden away.

Ooh! What a salivating next few games we are in for?

Ben's picture

Bravo, combination worthy of a world champ!

piet's picture


Great trick!


semipatz's picture

You mean, a Danish Slav? Sounds like a rich ethnic mixture! :)

ajay's picture

Let me say this Kramnik supporters. (1) the match is not over; and (2) just looking at these games, it is clear that Anand has succeeded in getting Karmnik into tactical skirmishes which is not the latter's forte. (3) If kramnik is to win, he needs to either be like Topalov, or get into strategic battles like Karpov...(4) and if he does lose, please do not offer pathetic far this seems pretty one sided...

semipatz's picture

1) Anand will now be unofficial #1 on the live rating list again.

2) He is looking good to join the lineage of Steinitz at long last.

Sunil's picture

Despite te blunders by Kramnik, one should give credit to Anand for drawing out Kramnik to such Double edged positions (Which obviously is not to Kramnik's liking.). These sharp positions compel Kramnik to spend more time on his clock. If you check Anand's moves you can see that he keeps the complexity of the position meticulously - each move. More over, Kramnik is not comfortable when his King is attacked . In that sense, Anand has induced Kramnik to make mistakes . I think Anand will repeat 1.d4 since he doesnt want to run into Sveshnikov.

Jonas's picture

@Sunil: Yes you are right, Kramnik lost not because he blundered, it's because Anand is better prepared for this mach. Kramnik insulted Anand many times before the mach. (like lending the crown, or that Anand can't win against him with black and similar bs).
So that was even bigger stimulation for Anand to prepare well, and kramnik might even started to believe his bs and was too confident before the mach.

Christos (Greece)'s picture

In retrospect, the exchange variation that Vladimir used in the first game was a good choice. At least he didn't lose that game.

kiryakleiv's picture

i think it's all over can he really win 3 out of 7 against anand?not a chance!

kris's picture

1) Kramnik has asked that Leko's toilet should be examined for the presence of any cables that may have been hidden there
2) Kramnik has also asked the arbiters that he will not play any more whites in this match.

Sam's picture

I think this is going to be a one man show.

kievit's picture


36. Rc7!?, Rxc7 37. g3, Rc2 38. Bd3, e2 39. Kf2, Rb2 40. b5, Ra2 42. Bxh7, Rxa4
not so easy (for an amateur like me).

maybe better: 38. ..., Rd2! 39. Bc4, Rb2 40. b5, h6 but for an amateur like me it would still not be so easy to win this.

I guess there must be better continuations against Rc7/g3...

Jack's picture

Next 2 games, (Game 6 and 7) Anand has white, so if Kramnik has to survive in this match then he has to something in next 2 games else he would be staring at winning 2 games out remaining 5!

Ranajeet's picture

3 things are clear:

- Kramnik is a human, Anand is a computer.
- The only human who could beat Anand in the whole world now no longer plays chess.
- Atleast we know now that Kramnik does not use Fritz in his restroom.

jaideepblue's picture

I hope the press conference video will be posted soon. For those who can't wait that long here is audio-only version:

piet's picture

Black can play: 37. ... Rxc7 38 g3 Rc1 39 Kg2 Rc2+
Then after 40 Kf3 Rf2+ or after something else 40... e2

A Viswa's picture

I think the Russian empire is unraveling. the might of the Russian machine and governmental resources is no longer as weighty as it seems. The Tiger of Madras, with his crack team of a Danish GM, Indian GM, and Rustam has shown the world that dedication, hard work, and intelligence will prevail over everything else. All the rubbish and arrogance spewed by Kramnik before the match, including his refusal to accept Anand as the WC from Mexico City last year was dishonorable. Now he has learnt a lesson. I hope that Anand and his seconds finish up the series with a well-deserved win. Then Kramnik, in all his arrogance, will know who is the better player in a match situation. Give credit to Vishy, you idiot.

Katata's picture

Dear Ranajeet,
Saying that Anand is a computer is a big insult to him even if you are both indians.

Anand is an universal player, he can play double edges positions as well as he is able to defend inferiour positions a la Petrosian. Kramnik likes safety, and accumulating slight advantages.

amit's picture

There should be a match between Kasparov and Anand. Kramnik has lost his power. I think next year the championship fight will be a match between Gata Kamsky and Vishwanathan Anand.

Ranajeet's picture

Good point by Katata,

Anand plays a kind of advanced chess that is both human-like when needed and fierce like the computer when he wants to - Kramnik needs a Fritz by his side to compete

All hail to Anand - the cyborg (or the Terminator)

P.S - Kramnik had once said, Anand plays like the 23rd century chess.

Bharat's picture

Kramnik has to play a4 after the forced exchange of black-squared bishops

Torben's picture

My Fritz says this position is advantageous to white, better than +1. Kramnik's 20.a4 was also the silicone suggestion.

arne's picture

The machine sees a castled white king, two passed pawns and a doubled f-pawn for Black. It probably underrates Black's activity.

peter's picture

Indeed 18.Rfc1 was played after about 40 minutes thinking.

Pieter Priems's picture

How is the position at move 19. I don't understand it.

bas's picture

Where do you c the time?

Torben's picture

Bas, I don't see time here but on another connection. Kramnik has been thinking for 20 minutes about his current move and has used a full hour now. Apparently 17. - , f5 has taken him by surprise.

mahi's picture

can Kramnik pull a rabbit out of the hat

bas's picture

hmm. The times are pretty essential. Chessvibes rules. Its suck a good site i get spoiled and want it even better. I NEED TIMES PETER.

lol just kidding.
Hope kramnik will bring up something good in response

Torben's picture

Anand has used just 7 minutes, Kramnik more than 40. Apparently Kramnik has stumbled into another Anand home preparation like in game 3.

sartaj's picture

Hmm....The same setup but an early Rg8. Wonder how much time Kramnik took to come up with Bf4

peter's picture

Yes, and again Kramnik has to check if Nxd4 is possible.

Sander's picture

Kramnik is more than 30 min behind in time. 3rd game revisited?

JC's picture

It's clearly going to be difficult for Kramnik to come back, but it isn't impossible. I certainly agree that more games would have been preferable. +2 after 5 would be a much more interesting situation in an 18 or 24 game match. Going from parity to near-panic in 3 games is unfortunate. So much shouldn't hinge on one blunder in game 5.

Katata's picture

I know why Anand played well: he come with his wife, whearas Kramnik left his wife alone in Paris.

In 1990 the same thing happened for Karpov in Lyon: when he grought his wife (from the 13th game) he began playing very well.

AC's picture

Anand can only play what is in front of him and if he wins then he's WC period (in the line of WCs of Stenitz/Capa/Tal/Fischer/Kaspy etc etc). Having said that I don't think many would have predicted that Kramnik would be two down after 5. 12 games is too short for any major changes in match strategy. Maybe something like 24 games in total but the winner can be decided any time after 12 if there is one of the competitors has a 3 game margin.

VB's picture

Live Ratings pretty objective: 01 Anand 2792, Topalov 2791, Carlsen 2782, Ivanchuk 2781, Morozevich , Kramnik

Christos (Greece)'s picture

The video of the final moves is priceless. The expressions of the two players, Kramnik trying to hold a poker face after Ne3! but not really managing to (it is clear that he had not seen it before Anand played it on the board), and also Anand itching to play Ne3 immediately in blitz tempo, but trying to convince himself to take a bit of time and check the variation one more time.


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