Many a moves at crucial times "huge leapt to unknown": Anand

New Delhi: He has been the undisputed world champion for the last five years but Indian chess Grandmaster Viswanathan Anand says that many of his moves in crucial stages of games were simply "huge leapt to the unknown" and a "little bit of luck" was needed to win big tournaments.

Anand said that he has to do "informed guesswork" based on his intuition in many crucial situations and those moves turn out to be the winners.

"Many a times, some moves are just a huge leapt to the unknown. My intuition and informed guesswork turned out to be right in many situations. But it depends on the constant training of psychological functions and it is more likely that I am right in the places I know and am more used to," Anand said at his felicitation function by the NIIT.

Referring to a match in 2000 against Alexander Khalifman here, Anand said, "Sometimes even in tournaments in which you were playing your best chess, you need some divine help. You need a little bit of luck.

"At times you need something to happen in your favour. During these times you feel only talent does not work though it is not something which happens often," he added.

NIIT felicitated Anand for winning the fifth world crown this year while also celebrating the 10th year of the setting up of Mind Champions Academy in 2002 under the guidance of the chess champion, which now boasts of 1.5 million school kids being involved in the sport.

Anand first turned Grandmaster in 1987 and has won many a tournaments, including the five world titles, but he said he has not thought of retirement yet.

"Lot of people ask what next and how long I will play. I said I will play as long as I am enjoying my game. And about targets and winning titles, I don`t have any structured target that I want to win these many world titles and all.

"People asked am I thinking about sixth title but I said I think of the next title and not the sixth," he said, while also ruling out joining politics later in his life.

Anand, however, said that he wants to improve his ELO ratings from the current 2780 and take it over 2800.

"Of course, my ELO ratings has gone down and I want it to go up again and touch 2800," he said.

Asked if he would try to go past Gary Kasparov's highest ELO ratings of 2851, Anand said, "To do that will take at least 10 tournaments. It will be nice if I do that but I am not losing my sleep over that."

Anand sought to play down the suggestion that he is not aggressive enough against his opponents, saying that motivating himself was more important than showing aggression in the open.

"Aggression is an important tool. I don't show it openly and but I keep motivating myself by some simple thought and that is important. I keep myself motivated by thinking that how horrifying I would be if I lose this match or that," he said.

"When I play against Topalov in the World Championships match in Sofia where they wanted to make the atmosphere tense. I tried to make the game as long a possible and that I did.

"I was thinking that how happy for Topalov if he beats me and I am not going to give that happiness to Topalov," he added.

Anand lauded the efforts of the NIIT in spreading chess in the country through the Mind Champions Academy which, under his guidance, has be able to popularise the sport, saying that other sports should follow the model.

"The NIIT MCA initiative is a model which other sports should emulate. It has played a big role in spreading chess in the country though the immediate impact is difficult to measure," he said.

Asked about the change in his personal life after the birth of his son Akhil last year, Anand said, "Life has changed profoundly. Now it is like I am not the most important person for (wife) Aruna, it's very much Akhil. But I am enjoying it.

"Now since Aruna is busy looking after Akhil, she does not travel with me and I have to do lots of things which she was doing earlier," he said.


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