2012 World Chess Championship, Anand vs. Gelfand, Game 12 – you get one guess

Today was supposed to be the final game of the 2012 World Chess Championship between challenger Boris Gelfand and champion Viswanathan Anand. I say “supposed to be” because after twelve ganes the score stands at 6-6, which means that the match goes to tiebreak on Wednesday.

Game 12 was much like the previous two games — the players got the Queens off early and let the game dribble down into a draw. But I will give them credit for getting out of “book” pretty quickly, and the pseudo-sacrifices were kind of nice (until you realize how harmless they were; one seemed designed to encourage a Queen swap to drain away what little life existed in the position).

I checked out the game about four minutes after it started and wisecracked on my personal Facebook page that I was surprised to see the Queens still on the board. Sure enough, the Queens came off shortly thereafter. I’ve had sneezes which lasted longer and were more violent than this game.

Onward to Wednesday…

Here are today’s moves, along with analysis from Houdini 2 Pro generated in the Chess King Pro interface. Go ahead — replay it using the arrow buttons below the board; trust me, it won’t take long:

Anand, Viswanathan (2799) – Gelfand, Boris (2739)

Result: 1/2-1/2
Site: Moscow
Date: 2012.05.28

[…] 1.e4 c5 2.¤f3 ¤c6 3.¥b5 e6 4.¥xc6 bxc6 5.d3 ¤e7 6.b3 -0.076…d6 +0.04 N

(6…¤g6 7.¥b2 f6 8.O-O ¥e7 9.d4 d5 10.exd5 cxd5 11.¥a3 …0-1, Shagbazyan Taron 2209 – Bogdanovich Stanislav 2386 , Odessa 3/21/2009 Ch Ukraine (juniors) (under 16))

7.e5 -0.157…¤g6 +0.048.h4 +0.008…¤xe5 +0.039.¤xe5 +0.039…dxe5 +0.0110.¤d2 +0.0110…c4 +0.14

(10…¥e7 +0.00 11.¥b2 +0.04 11…O-O +0.07 12.£g4 +0.04 12…f6 +0.04 13.O-O +0.04 13…¦f7 +0.07 14.¦ae1 +0.11)

11.¤xc4 +0.2111…¥a6 +0.1812.£f3 +0.1212…£d5 +0.1213.£xd5 +0.1113…cxd5 +0.1014.¤xe5 +0.1014…f6 +0.1015.¤f3 +0.1015…e5 +0.1016.O-O +0.0716…¢f7 +0.0717.c4 +0.0717…¥e7 +0.0518.¥e3 +0.1018…¥b7 +0.0619.cxd5 +0.0619…¥xd5 +0.0620.¦fc1 +0.0620…a5 +0.0621.¥c5 +0.0621…¦hd8 +0.0422.¥xe7

(22…¢xe7 23.¦c7+ ¢f8 24.¢f1 ¥xf3 25.gxf3 ¦xd3 26.¦ac1 ¦ad8 27.¦1c5 ¦8d5 28.¦5c6 ¦d1+ 29.¢g2 ¦d7 30.¦xd7 ¦xd7 31.¦a6 ¦d5 32.h5 f5 33.h6 gxh6 34.¦xh6 ¦d2 35.¦e6 ¦xa2 36.¦xe5 f4 37.¦e4 ¢g7 38.¦xf4 (0:01:35) 22.Bxe7)

And here is the raw, uncooked, unspiced, gamescore:

1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 e6 4. Bxc6 bxc6 5. d3 Ne7 6. b3 d6 7. e5 Ng6 8. h4
Nxe5 9. Nxe5 dxe5 10. Nd2 c4 11. Nxc4 Ba6 12. Qf3 Qd5 13. Qxd5 cxd5 14. Nxe5 f6
15. Nf3 e5 16. O-O Kf7 17. c4 Be7 18. Be3 Bb7 19. cxd5 Bxd5 20. Rfc1 a5 21. Bc5
Rhd8 22. Bxe7 1/2-1/2

Have fun! — Steve Lopez

7 Responses to “2012 World Chess Championship, Anand vs. Gelfand, Game 12 – you get one guess”

  • Don Britt says:

    I was fascinated by this game. I think Gelfand deserves high marks for handling Anand’s preparation with such aplomb. The pressure had to be staggering. Still he found C4 and made sure it was man to man from that point on. I didn’t understand Vishy’s draw offer, but took solace in the fact that Kramnik didn’t either. Gelfand has made this an interesting match. Great fighting spirit on his part throughout.

  • alexis cochran, nz says:


  • Don Britt says:

    You might want to spread word that the tie break starts at noon in Moscow, not three. I just caught that. I think many will be tuning in late.

  • LC says:

    I think Anand offered a draw because his d3 pawn is hanging after the exchange and his knight is quite bad also. Only reason to play on would be the time pressure on Gelfand (that’s what Kramnik was pointing out).
    I guess Anand didn’t want to take any chances so close to the rapid playoff where he should have a decisive advantage.
    I looked up their head-to-head and in regular games its very even, but in rapid and blitz it’s all Anand.

    • Don Britt says:

      By the way I liked your ‘over the board’ assessment of the final position in game 12 LC. It makes perfect sense that Anand wasn’t all that confident of his position. Anyway, on to the tie break. 1:50 AM here in Western Canada. Here’s one chess geek who can’t wait!

  • Don Britt says:

    Gelfand has been much more confident throughout. (Even overconfident in the game he blundered.) Although the record in faster time controls heavily favors Anand I think Gelfand’s chances are good, at least in the rapid portion.

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