73 Facts About Viswanathan Anand


Viswanathan "Vishy" Anand was born on 11 December 1969 and is an Indian chess grandmaster and a former five-time World Chess Champion.


Viswanathan Anand became the first grandmaster from India in 1988, and is one of the few players to have surpassed an Elo rating of 2800, a feat he first achieved in 2006.


Viswanathan Anand became the undisputed world champion in 2007, and defended his title against Vladimir Kramnik in 2008, Veselin Topalov in 2010, and Boris Gelfand in 2012.


Viswanathan Anand occupied the number one position for 21 months, the sixth-longest period on record.


Viswanathan Anand has since developed into a universal player, and many consider him the greatest rapid chess player of his generation.


Viswanathan Anand won the FIDE World Rapid Chess Championship in 2003 and 2017, the World Blitz Cup in 2000, and numerous other top-level rapid and blitz events.


Viswanathan Anand was born on 11 December 1969 in Mayiladuthurai, Tamil Nadu, India, and moved to Chennai, Tamil Nadu, where he grew up.

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Viswanathan Anand's father, Krishnamurthy Viswanathan, was a general manager of Southern Railways who had studied in Jamalpur, Bihar; and his mother, Sushila, was a housewife, chess aficionado, and an influential socialite.


Viswanathan Anand is 11 years younger than his sister, and 13 years younger than his brother.


Viswanathan Anand's brother, Shivakumar, is a manager at Crompton Greaves in India.


Viswanathan Anand's sister, Anuradha, is a professor at the University of Michigan.


Viswanathan Anand started learning chess from age six from his mother, but he learned the intricacies of the game in Manila, where he lived with his parents from 1978 through the 1980s while his father was contracted as a consultant by the Philippine National Railways.


Viswanathan Anand was educated at Don Bosco Matriculation Higher Secondary School, Egmore, Chennai, and has a Bachelor of Commerce from Loyola College, Chennai.


Viswanathan Anand married Aruna in 1996 and has a son, born on 9 April 2011, named in the traditional patronymic way Viswanathan Anand Akhil.


Viswanathan Anand is Hindu and stated that he visits temples to enjoy the tranquility and joy they symbolize.


Viswanathan Anand has credited his daily prayers with helping him achieve a "heightened state of mind" that helps him focus better when playing chess.


Viswanathan Anand's hobbies are reading, swimming, and listening to music.


Viswanathan Anand has been regarded as an unassuming person with a reputation for refraining from political and psychological ploys and instead focusing on his game.


Viswanathan Anand was the only sportsperson invited to the dinner Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh hosted for US President Barack Obama on 7 November 2010.


Viswanathan Anand was denied an honorary doctorate from University of Hyderabad because of confusion over his citizenship status; India's Minister of Human Resource Development Kapil Sibal later apologised and said, "There is no issue on the matter as Viswanathan Anand has agreed to accept the degree at a convenient time depending on his availability".


In 1984 Viswanathan Anand won the Asian Junior Championship in Coimbatore, earning an International Master norm in the process.


Viswanathan Anand won the tournament, defeating Adams in the final, and immediately faced Karpov for the championship.


Viswanathan Anand has won the Mainz Chess Classic, a Category 21 Championship, a record 11 times.


Viswanathan Anand is the first player to have won five titles of the Corus chess tournament.


Viswanathan Anand is the first player to have won each of the Big Three supertournaments at the time: Corus, Linares, and Dortmund.

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Viswanathan Anand has a stellar record at the annual Melody Amber Tournament : he has 5 overall prizes, and has the most "rapidplay" titles, winning 9 times.


Viswanathan Anand is the only player to win the blind and rapid sections of the tournament in the same year.


Viswanathan Anand won three consecutive Advanced Chess tournaments in Leon, Spain, after Kasparov introduced this form of chess in 1998, and is widely recognised as the world's best Advanced Chess player, where players may consult a computer to aid in their calculation of variations.


In March 2007, Viswanathan Anand won the Linares chess tournament and it was widely believed that he would be ranked world No 1 in the FIDE Elo rating list for April 2007.


The match started with a then-record eight consecutive draws before Viswanathan Anand broke open the match in Game 9, pressing and eventually breaking through Kasparov's Sicilian Defense with a powerful exchange sacrifice.


Viswanathan Anand lost the match in five games, Games 10 to 14.


Viswanathan Anand wasn't paying enough attention with his team to the fact that he was playing the World Championship.


Viswanathan Anand has never played such a strong opponent for such a long event.


Viswanathan Anand could have played without a fixed strategy and adjusted during the match.


Immediately after defeating Adams, Viswanathan Anand arranged a flight with his team to the International Olympic Committee museum in Lausanne, Switzerland to play Karpov in a six-game match for the FIDE world title.


Viswanathan Anand decided to join the event after skipping the 1999 edition, due to ongoing negotiations for a title match with Kasparov that ultimately fell through.


The final match played from 20 to 26 December 2000 in Tehran, pitted Viswanathan Anand against fourth-seeded Shirov, who was denied a chance to play Kasparov for the world title two years earlier.


Viswanathan Anand then seized control of the match with a 41-move win in Game 3 after neutralizing a rook sacrifice by Shirov on move 19, and sealed victory in the match with another win in Game 4.


Viswanathan Anand's run to his first world championship saw him go unbeaten through the entire tournament, with eight wins and 12 draws.


In 2005, Viswanathan Anand finished in a tie for second place at the 2005 FIDE World Chess Championship, won by Topalov.


Viswanathan Anand entered the tournament as the world's top-ranked player, and was considered a favourite to win alongside the defending champion Kramnik.


In Round 13, Viswanathan Anand played precise defence and salvaged a lost rook endgame against Grischuk with black to retain his lead, and sealed the championship in the final round with a 20-move draw against Peter Leko.


Viswanathan Anand won with the Catalan again in Game 4, only to drop Game 8 and leave the score level .


Viswanathan Anand won game 12 on the Black side of a Queen's Gambit Declined to win the game and the match.


Topalov chose to accept a pawn sacrifice by Viswanathan Anand, hoping to force a result and avoid a rapid chess tiebreak round.

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Topalov subsequently resigned, allowing Viswanathan Anand to retain the world championship.


Viswanathan Anand's opponent was Boris Gelfand, the winner of the 2011 Candidates Matches.


Viswanathan Anand lost his title in the 2013 World Chess Championship in Chennai.


Viswanathan Anand won the double round-robin FIDE Candidates tournament at Khanty-Mansiysk and earned a rematch with Carlsen.


Viswanathan Anand went through the tournament undefeated, winning his first-round game against Aronian, his third-round game against Shakhriyar Mamedyarov, and his ninth-round game against Topalov.


Viswanathan Anand drew all his other games, including his 12th-round game against Dmitry Andreikin, where Anand agreed to a draw in a complex but winning position.


Viswanathan Anand won this event ahead of ten of the top 12 players in the world, beating Kramnik in the final.


In most tournament time control games that Viswanathan Anand plays, he has more time left than his opponent at the end of the game.


Viswanathan Anand lost on time in one game, to Kamsky.


Viswanathan Anand won the tournament ahead of Carlsen, his first victory in a world championship since losing the classical championship to Carlsen in 2013.


In 2012, Viswanathan Anand participated in several high-level tournaments, including the London Chess Classic and the Bilbao Masters Grand Slam.


Viswanathan Anand participated in several high-level tournaments in 2013, including the Tata Steel Chess Tournament, Grenke Chess Classic, Zurich Chess Challenge, Alekhine Memorial, Tal Memorial, the 1st Norway Chess Tournament, and the London Chess Classic.


Viswanathan Anand participated in the 2013 World Chess Championship match against Magnus Carlsen.


Viswanathan Anand won the World Chess Championship Candidates Tournament, which earned him a rematch against Magnus Carlsen for the World Championship.


Viswanathan Anand participated in the Dubai World Rapid and Blitz Championships, Zurich Chess Challenge, Bilbao Masters, and London Chess Classic.


In 2015, Viswanathan Anand was a participant in the inaugural 2015 Grand Chess Tour, a series of 3 super-tournaments featuring the world's elite players.


Viswanathan Anand was a participant in the 2nd Grand Chess Tour, a series of four super-tournaments featuring the world's elite players: the Paris, France, and Leuven, Belgium, Rapid and Blitz tournaments, 2016 Sinquefield Cup, and the 2016 London Chess Classic.


Viswanathan Anand declined to participate in the Paris Rapid and Blitz tournament, meaning his results in Leuven, the Sinquefield Cup and the London Chess Classic would count toward the overall standings.


Viswanathan Anand participated in several high-level tournaments in 2017 including the World Rapid and Blitz Championship, the Isle of Man Championship, the Norway chess tournament, the Zurich Chess Challenge, the Leon Chess Masters Rapid Tournament and the FIDE World Cup, to which he returned after fifteen years.


Viswanathan Anand played in the Grand Chess Tour a series of five events: the Paris, Leuven and St Louis rapid and blitz tournaments, the 2017 Sinquefield Cup and the 2017 London Chess Classic, with Anand declining to participate in the Paris Rapid and Blitz tournament.

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Viswanathan Anand made more than $450 000 in prize money in 2017.


Viswanathan Anand defeated Magnus Carlsen for the first time in almost five years at the 2022 Norway Chess Blitz in May.


Viswanathan Anand dropped to No 5 in the October 2008 list, the first time he had been outside the top 3 since July 1996.


In 2010, Viswanathan Anand announced that he would expand his tournament schedule, beginning in late 2010, in an effort to regain the world number one ranking from Magnus Carlsen.


Viswanathan Anand achieved that goal on the November 2010 list with a rating of 2804, two points ahead of Magnus Carlsen, but was overtaken again by Carlsen, temporarily in January 2011 and then permanently in July 2011.


Viswanathan Anand was such a powerful force that I do not know who could have stopped him then.


Viswanathan Anand participated in a charity simul called "Checkmate COVID" to support COVID-19 relief along with fellow Indian Grandmasters Koneru Humpy, Harika Dronavalli, Nihal Sarin, and Praggnanandhaa Rameshbabu.


On his way to winning the FIDE World Chess Championship in 2000, Viswanathan Anand, playing White, defeated Grandmaster Viktor Bologan:.