| Anand: Real challenge for Russia
Moscow, Sept. 7 (PTI): Former world champion Viswanathan Anand will spearhead the world team in the match of the new century against Russia, that kicks off in the State Kremlin Palace here Sunday.
World’s highest rated player Garri Kasparov will obviously be the kingpin in the Russian team and their line-up, if anything, is impressive.
BrainGames match winner Vladimir Kramnik, former world champions Anatoly Karpov and Alexander Khalifman, Alexander Morozevich and Alexander Grishchuk, Evgeny Barrev and Alexei Dreev make the Russians once again train their guns to win this unique competition that started in Belgrade in 1970 and continued in London in 1984. In both the previous editions, the erstwhile USSR dominated the world side and won the 40 games by 20.5-19.5 and 21-19, respectively.
However, this time around, the world team is likely to pose a threat to the Russians and youngest-ever world champion Ruslan Ponomariov of the Ukraine will be the cynosure of all eyes in the world team.
The presence of Anand, Alexei Shirov of Spain, Hungarian Peter Leko and Judit Polgar (the first woman player in the history to make an appearance in such a match) and Vassily Ivanchuk of Ukraine certainly makes it a real challenge for the Russians to prove their world-beating abilities for the third time.
It will be played on a Scheveningen system basis wherein each player of each team will play against the opposition once under the rapid chess rules with 25 minutes to both players and 10 seconds added after every move played.
Of all the 24 players including two reserves of each team, only Kasparov and Karpov played in the previous edition at London.
Russia: Garri Kasparov, Vladimir Kramnik, Anatoly Karpov, Alexander Khalifman, Peter Svidler, Evgeny Bareev, Alexei Dreev, Alexander Grischuk, Alexander Morozevich and Alexander Motylev.
Reserves: Sergey Rublevsky and Vadim Zvjaginsev.
Rest of the World: Viswanathan Anand, Ruslan Ponomariov (Ukr), Vassily Ivanchuk (Ukr), Alexei Shirov (Esp), Peter Leko (Hun), Boris Gelfand (Isr), Nigel Short (Eng), Judit Polgar (Hun), Ilya Smirin (Isr) and Teimour Radjabov (Aze).
Reserves: Vladimir Akopian (Arm) and Zurab Azmaiparashvili (Geo).