- REBEL versus ANAND Day-3 -

main whatisnew download strength features shots subscribe reviews FAQ price list phonelistemail list how to order aegon bench database util epd2diagramj. noomen column DIAZ column misc. older topics comp. profile cartoon mode From July 21 till July 23,1998 REBEL in Italy on the island Ischia played 8 games against World's SECOND BEST chess player VISHY ANAND.

Rebel - Anand 0 - 1

Rebel vs. Anand: Day 3                  by Jeroen Noomen


The last game was played on Thursday 23rd of July. My

preparations already started the day before. A difficult

choice for me: What to play? My first impression was simply

play 1. e4 and strive for an open position. What would Vishy

do against 1. e4: A Sicilian, Caro Kann, Ruy Lopez or perhaps

the Modern Defence? Because 1. e4 was so obvious for a

chess computer, I decided on a little surprise by opening

1. d4 instead. Of course I prepared for all openings Anand

plays: Grunfeld, Queen's Gambit Accepted, Slav Defence.

The game started around 14:30 p.m. and to my big surprise

Vishy had decided on a Queen's Indian. That was not expected!

My pre-prepared book had Petrosian's 4. a3 against the Queen's

Indian, but as soon as the game was going I was a bit angry at

myself for not choosing 4. g3 instead.

Anyway, we got an interesting position after the opening, where

Anand's ... Qc8 put Rebel out of book. Here a small incident

took place: One of the people taking care of the power supply

accidently touched the ESC-key, after which Rebel immediately

played its move, Bb5. Taking this back and restarting the thinking

process costed Rebel about 4 minutes on the clock. Besides, I

was not too happy about Rebel's plan of giving up the pair of

bishops and following it up by Ne5 and Qd3. After Anand's move

b6-b5 (presumably to prevent Nc4 tricks), Rebel came up with the

very interesting Qf3! This contains a huge trick: If Black tries

to castle quickly by playing ... Be7, he will be surprised by


Anand thought for nearly 20 minutes and came up with the

positional sacrifice ... Bd6! Rebel's score went up immediately,

the following moves were pretty forced, leading to an exchange

of queens and a very unclear ending. Although White has many

pawns, it is not easy for him. Black has a clear plan of invading

on the c-file, combined with advancing the a- and b-pawn, making

a very strong passed pawn. In the meantime it is very difficult

for White to get his pawns on the King's side going. I wonder if

there is a program that evaluates this position correctly. 

In the further course of the game Rebel could not find the correct

plan. When the Black rook came to c2, I began to feel very

pessimistic about White's chances. He is paralysed, Black is

going to make a passed pawn and White's passed pawns are

incredibly helpless. Rebel tried to make something out of the

passed d-pawn, but after d5, exd5 it appeared that taking back

on d5 would lose. So there came Rh3?! (honestly, I was thinking

about resigning at this point!), later followed by the little

trick f4! At last the unfortunate rook was activated.

After f4 Anand thought again for a while, but came up with the

decisive push d5-d4. Now with two Black passed pawns it was a

hopeless business. It's crazy to see that 4 White passed pawns

can do absolutely nothing. Black keeps his king on g7 or h7,

puts his bishop on e4 and the pawns are stopped. With the strong

... Rc3! Anand got his pawn to b3, after which I resigned on

behalf of Rebel. The score dropped to -2, furthermore White is

completely helpless against the Black majority on the queen's


Anand was visibly relieved and we spoke about 5 minutes with

each other. The first thing he said was that he appreciated my

draw offer in the first tournament game. He told me that the

position was drawn, but he was afraid that I would continue

playing, trying to take advantage of his fatigue. This had never

been in my mind, I have too much respect for Vishy to try to win

in such a manner. I told him that I don't like to try for a win

this way. He appreciated that very much, which gave me a good


Next we spoke about today's game. Anand said that the idea of

Bb5xd7, Ne5, Qc2-d3-f3 seemed very strong to him. After Qf3! he

saw only one other alternative, ... h5?! According to Anand the

ending was very unclear, Rebel's h4? being a clear mistake.

Vishy expected Ke2! with the idea of activating the King and to

connect the rooks. Now the rook came to c2 and this paralysed


After this we had to pose for the cameras, after which there was

a press conference with Anand and Ed Schroder. Anand told he

first wanted to rest and maybe later analysing the games of this

match. When asked about a re-match, Anand said that he will have

to think about that.

So the match ended in a 5-3 victory for Rebel. For me the most

important was that Rebel played very interesting chess, all the

games were full of tense moments and I think a lot of positions

need more analysing to come to a final conclusion. Especially

the first tournament game is something to be very proud of.

I hope you all liked this match and our coverage. And maybe,

maybe more of such events will be organized in the future!

REBEL Day 1 Day 2 Day 3 ANAND
5 4.5 - 1.5 0.5 - 0.5 0 - 1 3

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