Sun Herald, July 29

Shortly after his narrow victory in a rapid match over fellow World Champion Vladimir Kramnik in Mainz last month, Viswanathan Anand conceded that something was wrong with his chess. 

Non-stop commitments in 2001 as World Champion had prevented Anand from working with his trainer, Elizbar Ubilava, for any lengthy period outside tournaments and his opening repertoire was beginning to show signs of wear and tear. 

Against Kramnik, Anand had found himself scrambling to hold a series of bad positions but the luck he enjoyed in Mainz could not hold. 

At the recent Sparkassen tournament in Dortmund, with Ubilava absent, playing (and winning) an event in Spain, Anand came crashing to earth. 

While Kramnik was tying for first place with rejuvenated Bulgarian GM Veselin Topalov, Anand lost four games - two to Topalov - drew six and won none to finish alone in sixth and last place. 

Anand has bounced back from similar (though less extreme) disasters in the past, most notably a joint last place in a Grandamster tournament in Dos Hermanas in 1999 which was followed the same year by Anand winning the World Championship qualifying tournament in Groningen. 

Anand claims already to have wiped the Dortmund result from his memory bank. 

However the psychological impact of the following defeat will be harder to erase. 

Dortmund 2001 
White: V.Kramnik 
Black: V.Anand 
Opening: Queen's Gambit Accepted 

1.d4 d5 2.c4 dxc4 3.Nf3 e6 4.e3 Nf6 5.Bxc4 c5 6.0-0 a6 7.Bb3 cxd4 8.exd4 Nc6 9.Nc3 Be7 10.Bg5 0-0 11.Qd2 Na5 12.Bc2 b5 13.Qf4 Ra7!? 

New, but far from inspiring. 

14.Rad1 Bb7 15.d5!! Bxd5 16.Nxd5 exd5 

On 16...Nxd5, 17.Rxd5 is strong. 

17.Qh4 h5 

Desperate, but 17...h6 is met by 18.Bxh6!. 

18.Rfe1 Nc6 19.g4! Qd6 20.gxh5 Qb4 

Kramnik thought 20...Nh7 the only hope. 

21.h6 Qxh4 22.Nxh4 Ne4 

On 22...gxh6 23.Bxh6 Rc8 24.Nf5 Bc5 25.Kh1! (Kramnik) should win. 

23.hxg7 Rc8 24.Bxe7 Nxe7 25.Bxe4 dxe4 26.Rxe4 Kxg7 27.Rd6! Rc5 28.Rg4+ Kh7 29.Nf3 Ng6 30.Ng5+ Kg7 31.Nxf7 Rxf7 32.Rdxg6+ Kh7 33.R6g5 Rxg5 34.Rxg5 Rc7 35.a3 b4 36.axb4 Rc1+ 37.Kg2 Rb1 38.Ra5 Rxb2 39.Ra4! 1-0 

White's king and pawns can now advance at will, as 39...Kg6 loses to 40.Rxa6+. 

Dortmund final scores: 1.Kramnik(Rus), Topalov(Bul) 6; 3.Leko(Hun) 5; 4.Morozevich(Rus) 4.5; 5.Adams(Eng) 3; 6.Anand(Ind) 2.5. 

Winter Chess Competition 

Thanks to the hundreds of entrants, 11 of whom solved all four puzzles correctly. The three Grand Winners were: G.Charles, Waverley; G.Smit, Cecil Hills; V.Korotkich, Newcastle.