Gelfand and Anand set for tiebreaker as 12th match ends in a draw
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Gelfand and Anand set for tiebreaker as 12th match ends in a draw

Rapid-fire nature of remaining matches believed to put Israeli chess master at a disadvantage

Boris Gelfand makes a move in the 12th game of the World Championships of Chess title contest in Moscow on Monday. (screen capture from live feed of match)
Boris Gelfand makes a move in the 12th game of the World Championships of Chess title contest in Moscow on Monday. (screen capture from live feed of match)

Israeli grandmaster Boris Gelfand and reigning world champion Viswanathan Anand of India played to yet another draw in their battle for the world championship of chess, tying the 12th game in Moscow on Monday. To break the tie, the contestants will compete on Wednesday in a series of four chess matches played in quick succession.

The players are currently tied at 6 points each. Each has won one game; the other 10 matches, including Monday’s, have been draws.

Analysts said that the rapid-fire nature of the tiebreaker will likely prove difficult for Gelfand, who is thought to be less comfortable in that type of game. Gelfand is known as an expert defensive player.

The two men are thought to have varying dispositions. For example, during the course of the 12th game, Gelfand was seen pacing back and forth, while his opponent wrinkled his forehead occasionally but sat mostly still.

The World Chess Championships, a three-week event, opened in Moscow on May 11. Gelfand and Anand are competing for a prize of $1.53 million (the second place also takes home a not-too-shabby sum of $1.02 million).

This is the fifth time Anand is defending his world title, though he no longer holds the top world ranking, falling to No. 4 recently.

Gelfand, ranked 22nd in the world, was born in Minsk. He immigrated to Israel in 1998, quickly dominating the local chess scene and capturing a number of world chess tournaments, including the Chess World Cup in 2009. He is regarded as a classical player who often has tricks up his sleeve. He defeated the world’s top players in the 2011 Candidates Cup round, which earned him a spot at the board opposite Anand.

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