Sun-Herald, July 1

Viswanathan Anand and Vladimir Kramnik have effectively put an end to chances for a reunification of the World Championship in the foreseeable future.

Speaking at the opening of their 10 game rapid challenge match in Mainz, Germany, the two World Champions explained they were not personally opposed to the idea of a reunification contest, but that the bodies sponsoring their respective titles (FIDE and BGN) would not countenance losing control of the World Championship should 'their' Grandmaster lose.

Of the two, Anand probably has more to gain from a reunification match, since his current title expires after 12 months and Anand's chances of retaining his title in FIDE's randomised knock-out tournament set for the end of the year are no better than even.

In contrast, Kramnik, like Kasparov before him, can hold on to the BGN title for as long as he likes, waiting for BGN to organise a proper challengers series.

Anand was hot favourite to win the rapid match in Mainz but to date has struggled, being lucky to keep the match on an even keel after 8 games. The following game was a terrible fifth wedding anniversary present for the Indian champ...

Mainz 2001 Game 3
White: V.Anand
Black: V.Kramnik
Opening: Ruy Lopez

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 Nf6 4.0-0 Nxe4 5.d4 Nd6 6.Bxc6 dxc6 7.dxe5 Nf5 8.Qxd8+ Kxd8 9.Nc3 h6 10.h3 Bd7 11.b3 Kc8 12.Bb2 b6 13.Rad1 Ne7 14.Rd2!? c5 15.Rfd1 Be6 16.Ne2 g5 17.h4 g4 18.Nh2 h5 19.Rd8+ Kb7 20.Rxa8 Kxa8 21.Rd8+ Kb7 22.Nf4 Ng6 23.g3 c4!

Kramnik realises that he his favourite Berlin Defence is under severe pressure and tries a tactical break-out. Had Anand now captured on e6 he would keep an edge; instead he finds a shocker.

24.bxc4?? Nxf4 25.gxf4 g3! 26.Nf1

23...c4 opened up the diagonal to White's king so that 26.fxg3 has become impossible due to 26...Bc5+.

26...gxf2+ 27.Kh2 Bxc4 0-1

An awful loss for Anand, although his success in the opening did lead Anand to give up the Berlin Defence for the remainder of the match.

Sun-Herald Winter Chess Competition
Puzzle #3

The third of four puzzles. From the diagrammed position, composed by Tavariani, White is to move and win. How?

The first four correct entries opened after July 11, the closing date, will win a set of 3 souvenir envelopes from 1972 Fischer-Spassky match. The 3 grand winners, chosen from those solving all four puzzles correctly, will win a souvenir medal from the 1972 match.

Entries to: Sun-Herald Winter Chess Competition, Puzzle #3, GPO Box 506, Sydney 2001 or faxed to 02-92822151.

Solution to puzzle #1 (composed by Afanasiev): 1.c3! (On 1.Nd6 Kb4 holds.) e1(Q) 2.Nd6! Qxc3! 3.Nb7+! and wins. Prize-winners: N.Aulton, Balgowlah; F.Schaefer, Monto; P.Chappell, Hurstville; D.Kerr, Kanwal.