Viswanathan Anand

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In this Indian name, the name Viswanathan is a patronymic, not a family name, and the person should be referred to by the given name, Anand.
Viswanathan Anand
Full name Vishwanathan Anand [1]
Country India
Born (1969-12-11) 11 December 1969 (age 46)
Mayiladuthurai,[2] Tamil Nadu, India
Title Grandmaster (1988)
World Champion 2000–02 (FIDE)
FIDE rating 2784 (January 2016)
(No. 8 in the January 2016 FIDE World Rankings).
Peak rating 2817 (March 2011)

Viswanathan "Vishy" Anand [Tamil: விஸ்வநாதன் ஆனந்த் ] (born 11 December 1969) is an Indian chess Grandmaster and a five-time World Chess Champion. He is considered to be one of the best chess players of all time.

Viswanathan Anand became India's first grandmaster in 1988.[3] He held the FIDE World Chess Championship from 2000 to 2002. He became the undisputed World Champion in 2007 and defended his title against Vladimir Kramnik in 2008. He then defended his title in the World Chess Championship 2010 against Veselin Topalov and in the World Chess Championship 2012[4] against Boris Gelfand. In the World Chess Championship 2013 he lost to challenger Magnus Carlsen and he lost again to Carlsen in the World Chess Championship 2014.[5]

In April 2006 Anand became the fourth player in history to pass the 2800 Elo mark on the FIDE rating list, after Garry Kasparov, Vladimir Kramnik and Veselin Topalov.[6] He occupied the number one position for 21 months, the 6th longest on record.[7]

He was also the first recipient of the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award in 1991–92, India's highest sporting honour. In 2007, he was awarded India's second highest civilian award, the Padma Vibhushan, making him the first sports person to receive the award.

Early life[edit]

Viswanathan Anand was born on 11 December 1969 at Mayiladuthurai, Tamil Nadu .[8][9] Shortly thereafter, his family moved to Madras (now Chennai), where he grew up.[2] His father, Krishnamurthy Viswanathan, is a retired General Manager of Southern Railways, had studied in Jamalpur, Bihar, and his mother Susheela was a housewife and chess/film/club aficionado and an influential socialite.

Anand is the youngest of 3 children. He is 11 years younger than his sister and 13 years younger than his brother. His elder brother, Shivakumar is a manager at Crompton Greaves in India and his elder sister, Anuradha, is a professor in the United States at the University of Michigan.[10][11]

Anand learnt chess from age six from his mother and a close family friend named Deepa Ramakrishnan.[12]

Anand was educated at Don Bosco Matriculation Higher Secondary School,[13] Egmore, Chennai and holds a degree of Bachelor of Commerce from Loyola College, Chennai.[14]

Personal life[edit]

In August 2010, Anand joined the board of directors of Olympic Gold Quest, a foundation for promoting and supporting India's elite sportspersons and potential young talent.[15][16][17] On 24 December 2010 Anand was guest of honour on the grounds of Gujarat University, where 20,486 players created a new world record of simultaneous chess play at single venue.[18]

His hobbies are reading, swimming, and listening to music. He is married to Aruna Anand and has a son born on 9 April 2011.[19]

Anand has been regarded as an unassuming person with a reputation for refraining from political and psychological ploys and instead focusing on his game.[20] This has made him a well-liked figure throughout the chess world for two decades, evidenced by the fact that Garry Kasparov, Vladimir Kramnik, and Magnus Carlsen, of whom the former two were rivals for the World Championship throughout Anand's career, each aided him in preparing for the World Chess Championship 2010.[21][22] Anand is sometimes known as the "Tiger of Madras".[23]

Anand was the only sportsperson to have been invited for the dinner hosted by the Indian PM Manmohan Singh for US President Barack Obama on 7 November 2010.[24]

Anand was denied an honorary doctorate from University of Hyderabad because of confusion over his citizenship status; however, later Kapil Sibal, India's Minister of Human Resource Development apologised and said "There is no issue on the matter as Anand has agreed to accept the degree at a convenient time depending on his availability".[25] According to The Hindu, Anand finally declined to accept the doctorate.[26]

Chess career[edit]

Early career[edit]

Anand's rise in the Indian chess world was meteoric. National level success came early for him when he won the National Sub-Junior Chess Championship with a score of 9/9 in 1983 at the age of fourteen. In 1984 Anand won the Asian Junior Chess Championship in Coimbatore earning an International Master norm. He became the youngest Indian to achieve the title of International Master at the age of fifteen, in 1985 by winning the Asian Junior Championship for the second year in a row, this time in Hong Kong.[27] At the age of sixteen he became the national chess champion and won that title two more times. He played games at blitz speed. In 1987, he became the first Indian to win the World Junior Chess Championship. In 1988, at the age of 18, he became India's first Grandmaster by winning the Shakti Finance International chess tournament held in Coimbatore, India. He was awarded Padma Shri at the age of eighteen.

Anand at the Manila 1992 Olympiad, age 22

In the World Chess Championship 1993 cycle Anand qualified for his first Candidates Tournament, winning his first match but narrowly losing his quarter-final match to Anatoly Karpov.[28]

In 1994–95 Anand and Gata Kamsky dominated the qualifying cycles for the rival FIDE and PCA world championships. In the FIDE cycle (FIDE World Chess Championship 1996), Anand lost his quarter-final match to Kamsky after leading early.[29] Kamsky went on to lose the 1996 FIDE championship match against Karpov.

In the 1995 PCA cycle, Anand won matches against Oleg Romanishin and Michael Adams without a loss, then avenged his FIDE loss by defeating Gata Kamsky in the Candidates final.[30] In 1995, he played the PCA World Chess Championship 1995 against Kasparov in New York City's World Trade Center. After an opening run of eight draws (a record for the opening of a world championship match), Anand won game nine with a powerful exchange sacrifice, but then lost four of the next five. He lost the match 10½–7½.

In the 1998 FIDE cycle, the reigning champion Karpov was granted direct seeding by FIDE into the final against the winner of the seven-round single elimination Candidates tournament. The psychological and physical advantage gained by Karpov from this decision caused significant controversy, leading to the withdrawal of future World Champion Vladimir Kramnik from the candidates tournament. Anand won the candidates tournament, defeating Michael Adams in the final, and immediately faced a well-rested Karpov for the championship. Despite this tremendous disadvantage for Anand, which he described as being "brought in a coffin" to play Karpov,[20] the regular match ended 3–3, which led to a rapid playoff, which Karpov won 2–0. Karpov thus remained the FIDE champion.

World Chess championships[edit]

FIDE World Champion 2000[edit]

After several near misses, Anand won the FIDE World Chess Championship in 2000 for the first time after defeating Alexei Shirov 3½–0½ in the final match held at Tehran, thereby becoming the first Indian to win that title.

He failed to defend the title in 2002, losing in the semifinals to Vassily Ivanchuk. The 2002 FIDE world championship was ultimately won by Ruslan Ponomariov. Anand tied for second with Peter Svidler in the FIDE World Chess Championship 2005 with 8½ points out of 14 games, 1½ points behind the winner, Veselin Topalov.

World Champion 2007[edit]

Anand in 2007

In September 2007 Anand became World Champion again by winning that year's FIDE World Championship Tournament held in Mexico City. He won the double round-robin tournament with a final score of 9 out of 14 points, a full point ahead of joint second-place finishers Vladimir Kramnik and Boris Gelfand.

In 2000, when Anand won the FIDE World Championship, there was also the rival "Classical" World Championship, held by Kramnik. By 2007, the world championship had been reunified, so Anand's victory in Mexico City made him undisputed World Chess Champion. He became the first undisputed champion to win the title in a tournament, rather than in matchplay, since Mikhail Botvinnik in 1948.

In October 2007, Anand said he liked the double round robin championship format (as used in the 2007 championship in Mexico City), and that the right of Kramnik to automatically challenge for the title was "ridiculous".[31]

World Champion 2008[edit]

Anand convincingly defended the title against Kramnik in the World Chess Championship 2008 held 14–29 October in Bonn, Germany. The winner was to be the first to score 6½ points in the twelve-game match.[32] Anand won by scoring 6½ points in 11 games, having won three of the first six games (two with the black pieces).[33] After the tenth game, Anand led 6–4 and needed only a draw in either of the last two games to win the match. In the eleventh game, Kramnik played the Najdorf Variation of the Sicilian Defense. Once the players traded queens, Kramnik offered a draw after 24 moves since he had no winning chances in the endgame.

Anand–Kramnik, 2008 World Ch.
a b c d e f g h
c8 black rook
f8 black king
g8 black rook
b7 black pawn
e7 black knight
f7 black pawn
h7 black pawn
a6 black pawn
f5 black pawn
e3 black bishop
a2 white pawn
b2 white pawn
c2 white pawn
f2 white rook
g2 white pawn
h2 white pawn
b1 white king
c1 white knight
f1 white bishop
h1 white rook
7 7
6 6
5 5
4 4
3 3
2 2
1 1
a b c d e f g h
Final position of the match

Anand (2783) – Kramnik (2772), Wch Bonn GER (11);[34] 29 October 2008 (final game)
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.Bg5 e6 7.f4 Qc7 8.Bxf6 gxf6 9.f5 Qc5 10.Qd3 Nc6 11.Nb3 Qe5 12.0-0-0 exf5 13.Qe3 Bg7 14.Rd5 Qe7 15.Qg3 Rg8 16.Qf4 fxe4 17.Nxe4 f5 18.Nxd6+ Kf8 19.Nxc8 Rxc8 20.Kb1 Qe1+ 21.Nc1 Ne7 22.Qd2 Qxd2 23.Rxd2 Bh6 24.Rf2 Be3 ½–½

Responding to Anand's win, Garry Kasparov said "A great result for Anand and for chess. Vishy deserved the win in every way and I'm very happy for him. It will not be easy for the younger generation to push him aside... Anand out-prepared Kramnik completely. In this way it reminded me of my match with Kramnik in London 2000. Like I was then, Kramnik may have been very well prepared for this match, but we never saw it."[35] In 2010 Anand donated his gold medal to the charitable organisation "The Foundation" to be auctioned off for the benefit of underprivileged children.[36]

World Champion 2010[edit]

Before the World Chess Championship 2010 match with Veselin Topalov, Anand, who had booked on the flight Frankfurt–Sofia on 16 April, was stranded due to the cancellation of all flights following the volcano ash cloud from Eyjafjallajökull. Anand asked for a three-day postponement, which the Bulgarian organisers refused on 19 April. Anand eventually reached Sofia on 20 April, after a 40-hour road journey.[37] Consequently, the first game was delayed by one day.[38]

The match consisted of 12 games. After 11 games the score was tied at 5½–5½. Anand won game 12 on the Black side of a Queen's Gambit Declined to win the match and retain the World Championship. In game 12, after Topalov's dubious 31st and 32nd moves, Anand obtained a strong attack against Topalov's relatively exposed king. Topalov subsequently resigned.

World Champion 2012[edit]

As a result of Anand's victory in the World Chess Championship 2010, he defended his title in the World Chess Championship 2012; the location of the event was the Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow.[39] His opponent was Boris Gelfand, the winner of the 2011 Candidates Matches. After losing in the 7th game to Gelfand, Anand came back to win the 8th game in only 17 moves – the shortest game in World Chess Championship history. The match was tied 6–6 after regular games with one win each. Anand won the rapid tie break 2½–1½ to win the match and retain his title. After the match, Russian president Vladimir Putin greeted Anand and Gelfand by calling both to his official residence.[40]

World Championship 2013[edit]

Anand lost the defence of his title in the World Chess Championship 2013 at Chennai. The winner was Magnus Carlsen, the winner of the 2013 Candidates Tournament. The first four games were drawn, but Carlsen won the fifth and sixth games back to back. The seventh and eighth games were drawn, while the ninth game was won by Carlsen. On 22 November, the tenth game was drawn making Carlsen the new world champion.[41]

World Championship 2014[edit]

Anand won the double round-robin FIDE Candidates tournament at Khanty-Mansiysk March 13–30 and earned a world championship rematch with Magnus Carlsen. Anand went through the tournament undefeated, winning his first-round game against Levon Aronian, his third-round game against Shakhriyar Mamedyarov, and his ninth-round game against Veselin Topalov.[42] He drew all his other games, including his twelfth-round game against Dmitry Andreikin, where Anand agreed to a draw in a complex, but winning position.[43] He faced Carlsen in the world championship match in November, in Sochi, Russia.[44] Carlsen won the match 6.5 to 4.5 after eleven of twelve scheduled games.

FIDE World Rapid Chess Champion 2003[edit]

In October 2003, the governing body of chess, FIDE, organised a rapid time control tournament in Cap d'Agde[45][46] and billed it as the World Rapid Chess Championship. Each player had 25 minutes at the start of the game, with an additional ten seconds after each move. Anand won this event ahead of ten of the other top twelve players in the world, beating Kramnik in the final. His main recent titles in this category are at: Corsica (six years in a row from 1999 through 2005), Chess Classic (nine years in a row from 2000 through 2008), Leon 2005, Eurotel 2002, Fujitsu Giants 2002 and the Melody Amber (five times, and he won the rapid portion of Melody Amber seven times). In the Melody Amber 2007, Anand did not lose a single game in the rapid section, and scored 8½/11, two more than the runners-up, for a performance rating in the rapid section of 2939.[47] In most tournament time control games that Anand plays, he has more time left than his opponent at the end of the game. He lost on time in one game, to Gata Kamsky. Otherwise, he took advantage of the rule allowing players in time trouble to use dashes instead of the move notation during the last four minutes only once, in the game Anand versus Svidler at the MTel Masters 2006.[48]


In the 2013 Alekhine Memorial tournament, held from 20 April to 1 May, Anand finished third, with +2−1=6.[49]


Viswanathan Anand won the World Chess Championship Candidates Tournament, which earned him a rematch against Magnus Carlsen for the World Championship. He also participated in the Dubai World Rapid and Blitz Championships, Zurich Chess Challenge, and London Chess Classic.

  • Zurich Chess Challenge 2014: From January 29 to February 4, 2014, Anand participated in the Zurich Chess Challenge 2014. A Blitz Tournament on the opening day was played to determine the colors distribution for the Classical Tournament.[50] The classical tournament consisted of 5 games played with classical time control. The last day of the tournament consisted of 5 rapid games. The classical games were worth 2 points for a victory, 1 point for a draw, and 0 points for a loss, while the Rapid and Blitz games were worth 1 point for a win, 0.5 points for a draw, and 0 points for a loss, thus placing greater importance on each classical results. Anand scored 2.5 points out of 5 in the Blitz tournament. In the Classical phase of the tournament, Anand scored 2 points out of 5, losing his first two games to Levon Aronian and Hikaru Nakamura respectively, drawing against Fabiano Caruana and Magnus Carlsen in Rounds 3 and 5 respectively, and defeating Boris Gelfand in Round 4. In the final Rapid tournament, Anand finished last, scoring 1 point out of 5 (+0-3=2). In the entirety of the tournament, Anand in 5th place out of 6.
  • 2014 World Chess Championship Candidates Tournament: As part of the qualification cycle for the World Chess Championship 2014, Viswanathan Anand participated in the Candidates Tournament, held in Khanty-Mansisyk, Russia from March 13–31, 2014 in the Ugra Chess Academy. The participants of the tournament included Veselin Topalov and Shakriyar Mamedyarov, both of whom qualified through winning the top two spots in the FIDE Grand Prix 2012–13


In 2015, Viswanathan Anand was a participant in the inaugural 2015 Grand Chess Tour, a series of 3 supertournaments featuring the world's elite players. The three tournaments that Anand participated in were Norway Chess, Sinquefield Cup, and London Chess Classic. Among these tournaments, Anand also participated in the Berlin World Rapid and Blitz Championships, GRENKE Chess, Zurich Chess Challenge, Bilbao Chess Masters Final, and Shamkir Chess.

  • GRENKE Chess Classic (Baden-Baden): Viswanathan Anand began the 2015 year by participating in the GRENKE Chess Classic. The tournament, held from February 2–9, 2015 in Baden-Baden Germany, was an 8-player round robin consisting of 7-rounds. Anand scored 2.5 points out of 7 (+1-3=7), placing 7th out of 8.
  • Zurich Chess Challenge 2015: From February 13–19, Anand participated in the Zurich Chess Challenge 2015. A Blitz Tournament on the opening day was played to determine the colors distribution for the Classical Tournament. The classical tournament consisted of 5 games played with classical time control. The last day of the tournament consisted of 5 rapid games. The classical games were worth 2 points for a victory, 1 point for a draw, and 0 points for a loss, while the Rapid and Blitz games were worth 1 point for a win, 0.5 points for a draw, and 0 points for a loss, thus placing greater importance on each classical results. The rules also stated that players who drew before their 40th move would have to play a rapid game (that would not count in the tournament standings). Anand scored 3.5 points out of 5 possible points in the opening Blitz tournament (+3-1=1). He won the Classical tournament, scoring 2 victories and 3 draws. He defeated Levon Aronian in Round 2 and Hikaru Nakamura in Round 4. In the final Rapid Tournament, Anand scored 2 points out of 5 (+1-2=2). However, because Anand and Nakamura were tied for the overall Zurich Chess Challenge in number of total points, they played a blitz Armageddon game, which Nakamura won, defeating Anand with the black pieces. Therefore Anand came in second in the overall Zurich Chess Challenge.
  • Shamkir Chess (Gashimov Memorial 2015): From April 16–25, 2015, Anand participated in the 2nd Gashimov Memorial, in honor of the late Vugar Gashimov. It was a 9-round, 10-player single-round robin classical tournament, held in the town of Şəmkir (Shamkir District), Azerbaijan. Anand scored an overall +3 score, defeating Wesley So, Michael Adams, and Shakriyar Mamedyarov. He finished the tournament undefeated and in second place, behind winner Magnus Carlsen (whom he was better against in their individual encounter in Game 1).
  • Norway Chess 2015: Anand competed in Norway Chess 2015, the first leg of the Grand Chess Tour. This specific tournament was held in Stavanger, Norway, from June 15–26, 2015. The Blitz portion of the tournament was used to determine the colors and pairings of the main classical stage. In the Blitz tournament, Anand scored 5.5 points out of 9 (+4-2=3). In the Classical part of the tournament, the final standings through which the Grand Chess Tour points are awarded, Anand finished 2nd and undefeated (+3-0=6) and earned himself 10 Grand Chess Tour points, behind the winner of the tournament Veselin Topalov. He also reached an almost career-high rating of 2816 after the tournament and earned victories against Magnus Carlsen, Maxime Vachier-Lagrave, and Jon Ludvig Hammer, the latter of whom was the Wild-card of the tournament.
  • Sinquefield Cup 2015: Anand competed in the 3rd Sinquefield Cup, the second leg of the Grand Chess Tour. This specific tournament was held in the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis in St. Louis, Missouri, from August 22 to September 3, 2015. Similar to Norway Chess, the tournament featured the 9 overall Grand Chess Tour participants and 1 wild-card in a 9 round single-round robin tournament. The wild card in this tournament was Wesley So, who had just recently switched federations from the Philippines to the United States. Anand started off the tournament with 2 losses, against Hikaru Nakamura and Alexander Grischuk and ended the tournament with 7 draws. This gave him an overall score of -2 (+0-2=7), or 3.5 points out of 9, earning him 2 Grand Chess Tour points.
  • World Rapid and Blitz Championships: From October 10–14, 2015, Anand participated in the World Rapid and Blitz Championships in Berlin, Germany. In the Rapid Championship, Anand scored 9.5 points out of 15 (+8-4=3). In the Blitz Championship, Anand scored 13 points out of 21 (+7-2=12).
  • Bilbao Masters (Grand Slam Masters Final): From October 26 to November 1, Anand participated in the 8th Grand Slam Masters Final in Bilbao, Spain. The format of the tournament was a 4-player double round robin featuring 6 round of classical chess, using the Soccer-like scoring system (3 points for a win, 1 point for a draw, 0 points for a loss). Out of the 12 games played in the tournament, only 2 games were decisive. Anand finished the tournament on the bottom half (+0-1=5), losing a single game to Anish Giri.
  • London Chess Classic 2015: Anand competed in the 3rd Sinquefield Cup, the third and final leg of the Grand Chess Tour. This specific tournament was held in the Olympia Conference Centre in London, England from December 4–13, 2015. Similar to Norway Chess and the Sinquefield Cup tournaments, the London Chess Classic featured the 9 overall Grand Chess Tour participants and 1 wild-card in a 9 round single-round robin tournament. The wild card in this tournament was Michael Adams. Anand scored 3.5 points out of 9 in the Classic, earning 1 victory against Veselin Topalov but losing to Hikaru Nakamura, Alexander Grischuk, and Maxime Vachier-Lagrave. He finished the tournament in 9th place and earned 2 Grand Chess Tour points.

Overall, because of his performances in the Sinquefield Cup and the London Chess Classic, Anand finished 8th out of the main 9 Grand Chess Tour main participants - 14 Grand Chess tour points out of 39 maximum.[51]

Other results[edit]

Anand won three consecutive Advanced Chess tournaments in Leon, Spain, after Garry Kasparov introduced this form of chess in 1998, and is widely recognised as the world's best Advanced Chess player, where humans may consult a computer to aid in their calculation of variations.

His game collection, My Best Games of Chess, was published in the year 1998 and was updated in 2001.

Anand's recent tournament successes include the Corus chess tournament in 2006 (tied with Veselin Topalov), Dortmund in 2004, and Linares in 2007 and 2008. He has won the annual event Monaco Amber Blindfold and Rapid Chess Championships in years 1994, 1997, 2003, 2005 and 2006. He is the only player to have won five titles of the Corus chess tournament. He is also the only player to win the blind and rapid sections of the Amber tournament in the same year (twice: in 1997 and 2005). He is the first player to have achieved victories in each of the three big chess supertournaments: Corus (1989, 1998, 2003, 2004, 2006), Linares (1998, 2007, 2008), Dortmund (1996, 2000, 2004).

In 2007 he won the Grenkeleasing Rapid championship, which he won for the tenth time defeating Armenian GM Levon Aronian.[52] Incidentally, just a few days before Aronian had defeated Anand in the Chess960 final.[53]

In March 2007, Anand won the Linares chess tournament and it was widely believed that he would be ranked world No.1 in the FIDE Elo rating list for April 2007. However, Anand was placed No.2 in the initial list released because the Linares result was not included. FIDE subsequently announced that the Linares results would be included after all,[54] making Anand number one in the April 2007 list.[55]

Anand won the Mainz 2008 Supertournament Championship by defeating rising star Magnus Carlsen, earning his eleventh title in that event.[56]


In the April 2007 FIDE Elo rating list, Anand was ranked first in the world for the first time,[57] and (as of July 2008) he held the number one spot in all ratings lists but one since then until July 2008, the exception being the January 2008 list, where he was rated No. 2 behind Vladimir Kramnik (equal rating, but Kramnik held the No. 1 spot due to more games played).[58] He dropped to No. 5 in the October 2008 list, the first time he had been outside the top 3 since July 1996.[59]

In 2010, Anand announced that he would expand his tournament schedule, beginning in late 2010, in an effort to regain the world number one ranking from Magnus Carlsen.[60][61] He achieved that goal on 1 November 2010 list with a rating of 2804, two points ahead of Magnus Carlsen,[62] but was once again overtaken by Carlsen in July 2011.


Lubomir Kavalek describes Anand as the most versatile world champion ever, pointing out that Anand is the only player to have won the world chess championship in tournament, match, and knockout format, as well as rapid time controls.[63]

In an interview in 2011, Kramnik said about Anand: "I always considered him to be a colossal talent, one of the greatest in the whole history of chess"; and "I think that in terms of play Anand is in no way weaker than Kasparov but he's simply a little lazy, relaxed and only focuses on matches. In the last 5–6 years he's made a qualitative leap that's made it possible to consider him one of the great chess players."[64]

FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov commented that Anand's victory in the 2014 Candidates Tournament "...proved that he is one of the strongest and greatest players of modern times."[65]

In an interview in 2014 Alexander Grischuk said about Anand: "I have to say that of all the players I’ve played against Anand has personally struck me as the strongest, of course after Kasparov."[66]

Head-to-head record versus selected grandmasters[edit]

(Rapid, blitz and blindfold games not included; listed as +wins −losses =draws as of Sep 29, 2015.)[67]
Players who have been undisputed World Champions in boldface

Notable tournament successes[edit]

Rapid/exhibition tournaments[edit]

  • 1989 2nd Asian Active Chess Championship, Hong Kong 1st
  • 1994 Melody Amber Tournament, Monaco 1st
  • 1994 PCA Grand Prix (Rapid), Moscow 1st
  • 1996 Credit Swiss Rapid Chess Grand Prix, Geneva 1st
  • 1996 Torneo Magistral de Ajedrez, Leon
  • 1997 Melody Amber Tournament, Monaco 1st
  • 1997 Chess Classic Rapid Tournament, Frankfurt
  • 1998 Torneo Magitral Communidad De Madrid, Madrid 1st
  • 1998 Siemens Nixdorf Duell (Rapid), Frankfurt 1st
  • 1999 Wydra Memorial Chess (Rapid), Haifa 1st
  • 1999 Torneo Magistral de Ajedrez, Leon beat Karpov 5–1
  • 2000 Wydra International Tournament (Rapid), Haifa 1st
  • 2000 Torneo Magistral de Ajedrez, Leon beat Shirov 1½–½
  • 2000 Fujitsu Siemens Giants Chess (Rapid), Frankfurt 1st
  • 2000 Corsica Masters (Rapid), Corsica 1st
  • 2002 Eurotel (Combined Rapid plus Classical), Prague 1st
  • 2011 Botvinnik Memorial, Moscow, 1st[76]
  • 2011 Corsica Masters Knockout (Rapid), Corsica 1st[77]
  • 2014 World Rapid Chess Championship (Rapid), Dubai 3rd

Classical tournaments[edit]

  • 1986 Arab-Asian International Chess Championship, Doha 1st
  • 1987 Sakthi Finance Grandmasters Chess Tournament, Coimbatore 1st
  • 1989 51st Hoogovens Chess Tournament, Wijk aan Zee 1st
  • 1990 Asian Zonal Tournament, Qatar
  • 1990 Manchester Chess Festival, Manchester 1st
  • 1990 Triveni Super Grandmasters Tournament, Delhi Joint 1st
  • 1992 Reggio Emilia Chess Tournament, Reggio Emilia 1st
  • 1992 Goodrich Open International Tournament, Calcutta 1st
  • 1992 Alekhine Memorial, Moscow 1st
  • 1993 PCA Interzonal, Groningen 1st
  • 1996 Dortmunder Schachtage, Dortmund (joint 1st with Kramnik)
  • 1997 Torneo de Ajedrex, Dos Hermanas 1st
  • 1997 Invesbanka Chess tournament, Belgrade 1st
  • 1997 Credit Suisse Classic Tournament, Biel 1st


  • 1991 World Chess Championship Candidates, Madras, Brussels Quarter-finalist
  • 1992 Linares match Anand vs Vassily Ivanchuk 5–3
  • 1994-5 PCA World Championship Candidates Cycle, Linares, Las Palmas won
  • 1997 Aegon Man vs Computers chess event (clock simultan vs 6 programs) won 4–2


Anand has received many national and international awards.

Indian national honours[edit]

Other honours[edit]

  • National Citizens Award and Soviet Land Nehru Award in 1987
  • British Chess Federation "Book of the Year" Award in 1998 for his book My Best Games of Chess.[79]
  • Anand has won the Chess Oscar in 1997, 1998, 2003, 2004, 2007 and 2008. The Chess Oscar is awarded to the year's best player according to a worldwide poll of leading chess critics, writers, and journalists conducted by the Russian chess magazine 64.[80]
  • Sportstar Millennium Award in 1998, from India's premier Sports magazine for being the sportperson of the millennium.
  • "Global Strategist Award" for Mastering many formats of World Chess Championships by NASSCOM in 2011.[81]
  • Tamil Nadu chief minister J. Jayalalithaa honoured Anand with a cheque of Rs 2 crores, for winning the World Chess Championship for the fifth time.[82]
  • In 2012, he received the "Indian sportsperson of the year" and "Indian of the year" awards.[83]
  • In 2014 Anand was awarded the Russian Order of Friendship for the development of economic, scientific and cultural ties with Russia. The Order of Friendship was awarded to Viswanathan Anand and Boris Gelfand, the participants in the FIDE World Chess Championship Match that was held at the State Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow in 2012.[84]
  • In 2015 Anand was honoured with the top country award at the Spanish embassy, Delhi on January 8.It is given to the eminent people of Indian origin who helped to bring glory to both India and Spain.[85][86]
  • 4538 Vishyanand (provisional designation 1988 TP) is a main-belt minor planet. It was discovered by Kenzo Suzuki in Toyota, Aichi Prefecture, Japan, on October 10, 1988.[87] [88][89]

Sample game[edit]

Anand–Bologan, 2000 World Ch.
a b c d e f g h
c8 black bishop
e8 black rook
f8 black bishop
h8 black king
c7 black rook
f7 black pawn
g7 black pawn
h7 black pawn
a6 black knight
d6 black pawn
d5 white pawn
g5 white pawn
h5 white knight
d4 white knight
e4 white pawn
f4 white queen
c3 black pawn
g3 white rook
h3 white pawn
b2 black queen
f2 white pawn
g2 white king
b1 white bishop
d1 white rook
7 7
6 6
5 5
4 4
3 3
2 2
1 1
a b c d e f g h
Position after 36...c3. Anand, in an apparently worse position, finds an intuitive sacrifice that leads to a winning attack.

On his way to winning the FIDE World Chess Championship in 2000, Anand, playing White, defeated Grandmaster Viktor Bologan (analysis by GM Ľubomír Ftáčnik):

Anand–Bologan, New Delhi, 2000 World Championship;[90] Ruy Lopez, Breyer (ECO C95)
1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. 0-0 Be7 6. Re1 b5 7. Bb3 d6 8. c3 0-0 9. h3 Nb8 10. d4 Nbd7 11. Nbd2 Bb7 12. Bc2 Re8 13. Nf1 Bf8 14. Ng3 c5 15. d5 c4 16. Bg5 Qc7 17. Nf5 Kh8 18. g4 Ng8 19. Qd2 Nc5 20. Be3 Bc8 21. Ng3 Rb8 22. Kg2 a5 23. a3 Ne7 24. Rh1 Ng6 25. g5! b4!?

Anand has a strong kingside attack, so Bologan seeks counterplay with the sacrifice of a pawn.

26. axb4 axb4 27. cxb4 Na6 28. Ra4 Nf4+ 29. Bxf4 exf4 30. Nh5 Qb6 31. Qxf4 Nxb4 32. Bb1 Rb7 33. Ra3 Rc7 34. Rd1 Na6 35. Nd4 Qxb2 36. Rg3 c3 (see diagram) 37. Nf6!! Re5

If 37...gxf6, 38.gxf6 h6 39.Rg1! Qd2! 40.Qh4 leaves White with an irresistible initiative.

38. g6! fxg6 39. Nd7 Be7 40. Nxe5 dxe5 41. Qf7 h6 42. Qe8+ 1–0

White forces mate in 12 moves if the game were to continue, with 42...Bf8 43.Rf3 Qa3 44.Rxf8+ Qxf8 45.Qxf8+ Kh7 46.d6 exd4 47.Ba2 h5 48.dxc7 Nb4 49.Qg8+ Kh6 50.f4 g5 51.f5 g4 52.h4 Bxf5 53.exf5 Nxa2 54.Qh8#

See also[edit]


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  76. ^ Anand & Cmilyte winners Botvinnik Memorial rapid. ChessVibes. Retrieved on 31 May 2012.
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  90. ^ Retrieved 15 April 2007.

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Alexander Khalifman
FIDE World Chess Champion
Succeeded by
Ruslan Ponomariov
Preceded by
Vladimir Kramnik
World Chess Champion
Succeeded by
Magnus Carlsen
Preceded by
Garry Kasparov
World Rapid Chess Champion
Succeeded by
Levon Aronian
Preceded by
Mikhail Tal
World Blitz Chess Champion
Succeeded by
Alexander Grischuk
Preceded by
Veselin Topalov
Vladimir Kramnik
Magnus Carlsen
Magnus Carlsen
World No. 1
1 April – 31 December 2007
1 April – 30 September 2008
1 November – 31 December 2010
1 March – 30 June 2011
Succeeded by
Vladimir Kramnik
Veselin Topalov
Magnus Carlsen
Magnus Carlsen