The tournament in Wijk aan
See is over. No sensations
All participants can be divided into cats and mice, and the
cats won easily. Kasparov is very strong. +5 is a brilliant
result, even though it is weaker than his own achievements of
past years. Kasparov won this event for the third time in
succession, so the question who is the World Champion now is
almost senseless. Among the cats he is no less than a lion or a
The FIDE World Champion V. Anand is half-point behind the
winner. Nobody could have foreseen such a final spurt: +4 is an
One more World Champion, V. Kramnik, shared third place with
V. Ivanchuk. So all our champions performed well.
What about the others? The bright fire-ball of the chess
world, A. Morozevich, had a chance to become the leader but
failed. Shirov’s final games were much tougher than his start,
he lost many points and shared the 5-7 place with
Adams and Morozevich.
No sensations to speak about. The mice brought as many gifts
to the leaders as they could. The conclusion is self-evident.
Kasparov should not be allowed to compete with people. His defeat
in that match with computer was fixed. He lost to Kramnik because
it was his whim.
Perhaps Gelfand, Gurevich, Bareev or Khalifman could have
played at the tournament in Wijk aan See better than some of its
actual participants, but… perhaps the organisators had some
reasons for their choice of players. Is the war at the top of the
chess Olympus still going on? However that may be, we hope for a
soon peace. Both Kramnik and Anand are peaceful cats, even though
at the chess board they are almost as dangerous as Kasparov.
Now about the lower part of the table. Leko showed a neutral
result with 50% of the possible score. Topalov had a hard time
but managed not to disgrace himself absolutely. Other
grandmasters looked most poor at this festival of ELO favourites
though they are well known strong professionals. In opens they
can afford risky and questionable lines and always keep chances
to win any position, but top grandmasters would not allow them
even to complete development if they attempted to play with them
in this style. Perhaps this is why we have not seen at this
tournament Fiodorov’s favourite King’s Gambit. The losers
were doomed from the very beginning.