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FIDE World Chess Championship – Anand bounces back in style, Wins Game 2

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In an unexpected turn of events World Champion Vishwanathan Anand took Game 2 against Veselin Topalov by the scruff of its neck, wresting the initiative and leaving his opponent with plenty to ponder during the rest day on Monday. Anand, playing white, beat his opponent into submission piling pressure and closing corners. Topalov resigned on the 43rd move after battling for four hours, with no hope left for a reprieve.

In an exhibition of immense calm under pressure, Anand put aside the misery of the first game to plot the downfall of Topalov and draw the FIDE World Chess Championship level at 1-1. He borrowed a leaf out of his erstwhile rival Vladamir Kramnik's book by starting play with the Catalan Opening.

Topalov started in typically aggressive fashion, taking a pawn in just his fourth move. The big move came from Anand on the 15th when he offered an exchange of queens. The result of this move would only be visibly felt much later in the game, as Anand worked his way back from a disjointed pawn structure to claim back a pawn.

Anand was in a strong position by the 27th move, having claimed back his sacrificed pawn. Both players were working off the queenside, with the knights resting firmly in the center. Anand continued to build his advantage, collecting the queenside pawns, one by one.

Topalov tried to induce Anand into exchanging rooks, but the Indian great would have none of it. Finally, the Bulgarian playing at home in Sofia had no option but to resign.

"It was a complicated game, but at some point I started to make mistakes," admitted a despondent Topalov at the post-game press conference organised by the tournament officials in Sofia.

Anand was upbeat after this critical victory in the second game. "The main thing after a game like that is to sleep - which was impossible," said Anand, "and after that to play a good game." [which he ofcourse managed to do!]

The match is now interestingly poised, with Anand apparently back at his best inspite of the long and arduous road journey which wrecked his early preparations for this important Championship battle.

The players will rest on Monday and return to the third game, with Veselin enjoying whites, on Tuesday.

Fans can check out a move by move replay of the match here, also read about Game 1

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