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Monday, January 23, 2006

CHESS: Leko Won The Corus Chess Tournament in 2005 who will be the winner this year?

Standings after round 8: grandmaster group A

1. V. Topalov
V. Anand 5 1/2
3. S. Karjakin 5
4. B. Gelfand
V. Ivanchuk
M. Adams 4 1/2
7. L. van Wely
L. Aronian
P. Leko 4
10. S. Tiviakov 3 1/2
11. S. Mamedyarov
I. Sokolov 3
13. G. Kamsky
E. Bacrot 2 1/2

View Current Chess Corus 2006 Games
View Games from 2005
View Games from past Corus Touranments (1999-2005)

CHESS: Leko Won The Corus Chess Tournament in 2005
Wijk aan Zee - easily the most exciting chess event in many months. Where chess fans appeared in greater numbers than ever before, and left with a feeling of satisfaction, having seen the stars at their best. Wijk aan Zee, a beautiful summer resort, which at this time of year is cold (just a few degrees above freezing), wet and windy. It drizzles or rains all the time, and just the few hundred metres from the Zeeduin Hotel to the playing hall can become a bone-chilling experience.View pgn of this tournament.

But let us turn to the last round of this event, which was memorable for everybody in spite of coughing and fever. Naturally the key games were Sokolov vs Anand and Leko vs Polgar. Before the final round Peter Leko was leading the field by half a point, so everything was possible: he could win and take victory independent of what happened on the other board; he could draw and watch anxiously how Anand did with black against tail-ender Ivan Sokolov. A victory in this game would make Anand the joint winner. Or Peter could actually lose and Anand could win, taking the title at the very last minute from the Hungarian superstar.

Leko-Polgar: the Hungarian summit ended in a professional 22-move draw which guaranteed Peter at least the joint first place in Wijk. Immediately after it was over he appeared in the press conference, which was broadcast live on, trying not to glance over his shoulder at the monitor with the Sokolov-Anand game. Peter was very gratified to have added this one missing "Grand Slam" victory to his record, having won Dortmund (in 2002) and Linares (2003) but never before Wijk aan Zee. He also revealed his secret for success in this tournament: "You have to stop Vishy. You have to win your game against him, otherwise he will win his share of the games and will be hard or impossible to catch."



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