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World Chess Championship 2012 (4 Playoff)

Gelfand applies only small pressure to Anand in World Championship Game 4 draw

Anand and Gelfand at the start of game 4. Photo © Alexey Yushenkovho.

Anand and Gelfand at the start of game 4. Photo © Alexey Yushenkovho. |

Boris Gelfand didn't achieve very much with white in repeating the opening from Game 2. Gelfand was the first to innovate with 10.Qc2 but slowed down after 16...Re8. Although Anand was slightly critical of his 24...Bd4 (24...Qb6 is better) and both players said 32.Rc6 could have been tried it probably didn't change the assessment that black should draw if he exercises a reasonable amount of care. At the end Anand said once he played 32...Nd5, 33...Ne7 even a symbolic edge had disappeared. Not a terribly thrilling game but the match is still in the early stages. Gelfand said he obviously wasn't going to reveal his match strategy in a press conference, but it could easily be his idea to play solidly for the first few games in order to get into his first World Championship Match before revealing his major weapons. IM Malcolm Pein annotates. Game 5 3pm Moscow time, 12pm BST, Thursday 17th May 2012.

Dirk Jan ten Geuzendam and Jan Timman in commentary.

Dirk Jan ten Geuzendam and Jan Timman in commentary.


So we continued the theoretical dispute which we started in game 2, this time choosing Qc2 rather than Qc1 The character of the game was very similar with a little edge for white being countered with cautious moves from black, the advantage of the two bishops providing a little pressure.

[About the possibility of 32.Rc6] "the question is who is quicker because if I get my king to d4 I have chances but I'm not in time.

Optically white is better but his pieces are not co-ordinated in the best possible way, the bishop on f5, d2 and queen on d1 don't mesh well. Let's see if the bishop was on f3 I would agree with this opinion but I got the bishop to f3 only at the very end of the game. I had to pay the price of exchanging a few pieces to get there.

Peter Doggers of ChessVibes asks a question

Peter Doggers of ChessVibes asks a question.

The Gelfand-Anand Press Conference for game 4

The Gelfand-Anand Press Conference for game 4.


My 24...Bd4 was perhaps not the best I think maybe 24...Qb6....

Black has to be very exact here [in the ending] the only thing I can say is that I was waiting for the king to get to e2 so that I can do my manoever Nd5-e7 the question is whether white should play 32.Rc6.

"Well it was four draws. The match is just developing. We're still probing. It's very early, you don't really want to doing evaluations. So far it's a pretty tough match. " Anand

Maybe I would say the endgame became a bit more interesting. Maybe I could be a bit more precise. Other than that it's difficult to point to a critical situation.

IM Malcolm Pein Annotates

Gelfand,Boris (2739) - Anand,Viswanathan (2799) [D45]
WCh 2012 Moscow RUS (4), 15.05.2012
[IM Malcolm Pein]

1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.e3 e6 5.Nf3 a6

Anand's move order avoids 4...a6 5.c5

6.b3 Bb4

Driving the bishop to a bad square


[7.Bb2 Qa5 8.Rc1 Qxa2]

7...Nbd7 8.Bd3 0-0 9.0-0 Bd6 10.Qc2

[10.Rc1 Game 2 The game develops along broadly similar lines]

10...e5 11.cxd5 cxd5 12.e4 exd4 13.Nxd5 Nxd5 14.exd5 Nf6

Very similar to G2. Both players in their preparation undoubtedly

15.h3 Bd7 16.Rad1 Re8 17.Nxd4 Rc8 18.Qb1 h6

Viswanathan Anand


Boris Gelfand

Position after 18...h6

Typical example of where I distrust computer evaluations from a practical viewpoint. Gelfand can secure the two bishops here with Nf5 and even if the computers say equal, I would be worried about an endgame where the black queenside could be vulnerable to attack from the light squared bishop. With perfect play it may be = but in practice might be awkward. However for a world champion the position does not present too many problems

19.Nf5 Bxf5 20.Bxf5 Rc5 21.Rfe1 Rxd5 22.Bc3 Rxe1+ 23.Rxe1 Bc5

Viswanathan Anand


Boris Gelfand

Position after 23...Bc5

Although White has two bishops his pieces are not coordinated optimally as Gelfand said after the game. If a white bishop found it's way to f3 that would be a different matter

24.Qc2 Bd4

[24...Qb6 might be better said Anand in post match comments 25.Re5 Rxe5 26.Bxe5 Is a small edge so; 24...Qb6 25.Re5 Rd8]

25.Bxd4 Rxd4 26.Qc8 g6

No more back rank tricks now

27.Bg4 h5 28.Qxd8+ Rxd8

Anand offered a draw

29.Bf3 b6

Getting the pawns out of harm's way onto black squares

30.Rc1 Rd6 31.Kf1 a5

Viswanathan Anand


Boris Gelfand

Position after 31...a5


[I was waiting for the king to get to e2 so I could execute my manouvre Nd5-e7 - Anand. It was generally agreed that Rc6 might have been more testing but Black holds 32.Rc6 Rxc6 33.Bxc6 Kf8 34.Ke2 Ke7 35.Kd3 Kd6 36.Bf3 Kc5 37.a3]


I was expecting Nd7-c5 but of course there is nothing wrong with this

33.g3 Ne7 34.Be4 Kg7 1/2-1/2

Viswanathan Anand


Boris Gelfand

Position after 34...Kg7. Draw agreed

WCh Moscow
Anand, Viswanathan - Gelfand, Boris ½-½ 24 D85 Gruenfeld Defence
Gelfand, Boris - Anand, Viswanathan ½-½ 25 D45 Anti-Meran Variations
Anand, Viswanathan - Gelfand, Boris ½-½ 37 D70 Gruenfeld Defence
Gelfand, Boris - Anand, Viswanathan ½-½ 34 D45 Anti-Meran Variations

WCh Moscow (BUL), 11 v - 31 v 2012
Name Ti NAT Rtng 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 Total Perf
Anand, Viswanathan g IND 2791 ½ ½ ½ ½ . . . . . . . . 2 2727
Gelfand, Boris g ISR 2727 ½ ½ ½ ½ . . . . . . . . 2 2791

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