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Third crown for Anand

Wijk Aan Zee (The Netherlands): World Cup champion Viswanathan Anand began the New Year in style by winning the 65th Corus Grandmasters chess meet on Sunday.

The 31-year-old Indian superstar annexed his third Corus title with a total of 8.5 points from 13 rounds, pipping the likes of BrainGames champion Vladimir Kramnik of Russia and world champion Ruslan Ponomariov of Ukraine.

After his closest rival, Judit Polgar, played a quick draw with talented youngster Teimour Radjabov of Azerbeijan, Anand settled for a quick 14-move draw with Evegeny Bareev of Russia in the 13th and final round.

Polgar, who held Anand to a draw in the penultimate round, finished second with eight points.

The game, in which Anand played white, began from the French Defence, which went into the Burn Variation. The Indian champion played it safe and soon signed offered the draw that was accepted by the Russian after brief thought.

Radjabov finished with 6.5 points in the lower half of the standings.

Anand and Polgar were the only players to finish unbeaten in the 14-player all-play-all tournament. Anand had four wins, and they came against Ponomariov, Alexei Shirov, Vasselin Topalov and Anatoly Karpov.

Kasparov wins 1st game

World chess champion Garri Kasparov defeated computerised challenger Deep Junior in the first of six Man vs Machine games in New York Monday. Kasparov forced the Israeli-programmed Deep Junior into a position from which it could not win.

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