Final Chess Masters: Anand signs off with another draw; finishes fifth
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World champion Viswanathan Anand could not fetch a win till the very end as he settled for a draw with Russian Sergey Karjakin in the 10th and final round of fifth Final Chess Masters to finish a lowly fifth here.
Having lost to Magnus Carlsen of Norway in the penultimate round after a spate of draws, Anand could not break through the defenses of Karjakin and settled for his ninth draw in 10 games apart from the lone defeat.
After a full bloodied penultimate round that produced three decisive games, the atmosphere was a lot calmer in the playing hall as all the games ended in draws.
While Carlsen held his own against Levon Aronian of Armenia, who played white, Italian co-leader Fabiano Caruana signed peace very quickly with Francisco Vallejo Pons of Spain.
World number one Carlsen won the event blanking Caruana 2-0 in the blitz tiebreak games that ensued after a tie between the two.
After the final round, Caruana and Carlsen had tied for the top spot with 17 points apiece in the soccer-like scoring system in place here that gave three points for a win and one for a draw.
With Carlsen first in the tiebreaker, Caruana finished second and Aronian had to be content with third place with 11 points in all.
Karjakin ended ahead of Anand on 10 points while the Indian was a point behind for his fifth-place finish. Not much was expected from Vallejo Pons, but the Spaniard showed enough character and but for a couple of missed chances, could have made a difference in the final standings.
For Anand, the tournament turned out to be a forgettable one where the world champion could not win even a single game.
Though it might be irrelevant due to lack of form, the Indian ace would be certainly looking to set the records straight in the next super tournament that he plays in London come December.
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