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Thursday, April 29, 2010

Anand-Topalov WCh, R4: Catalantastic Vishy!

anand topalov wcc

Wow, Anand just devastated Topalov with a knight sac and mating attack out of another Catalan. Yes, a knight sac and mating attack on move 25 out of a Catalan. Topalov may have to try an Indian Defense against the Indian if this keeps up. The world champion takes his first lead of the match. A really beautiful combination, with Black finding it impossible to prevent a white rook from lifting to the 4th rank, either Rc4 or Rd4, and delivering mate. Those watching the video said that Topalov offered a very limp handshake upon resigning on move 32, but to be fair it's hard to reach across the board when you've just had your head shoved up your rectum like that. Takes a lot of yoga. What a match, with 3/4 games decisive to start! Topalov played the routine 22..Rad8 very quickly, allowing the sac on h6. I'm sure computers will show very quickly if that was the losing blunder or if he could have saved himself after the sac. Looks very hard to do, so right now we can consider 22..Rad8 a catastrophic lapse in Topalov's sense of danger. Once again he shows himself to be an impatient defender against slow pressure. I wonder if Anand has Kramnik stashed in that van he drove from Frankfurt? 22..Nc5, heading to d3, runs into 23.Rc4! with similar threats to the game. 22..Rfd8 23.Ne5 Be8 is disgusting, as is 22..f6. But defending the Catalan well usually requires a level of passive groveling and that's just not in Topalov's DNA, bless him.
Anand leads 2.5-1.5 going into the rest day on Thursday.
Bonus analysis from mishanp in the comments: "Just for the record - a 2:2 draw on toilet visits today."

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