Dec 18, 2009

World Championship (2): Assessment at 25,000 feet

Overall statistics:

I have 88 games between Anand and Topalov in my Mega 2009 (updated with all but CBM 133). This number includes fast time controls and blindfold. White has won 31% of the games and Black 14%. Anand has scored 48.5 out of the 88 games. Topalov has scored 39.5 of 88. All percentages hereafter are from the white perspective.

The players have met by my count 49 times in classical chess, splitting the score down the middle. That goes also for the last 11 games played since the beginning of 2008, each with 2 wins.

Anand has had white in 25 of the 49 classic games. He’s scored 58.3% in 24 games beginning 1.e4, and he‘s won 1 of 1 with 1.Nf3. Topalov has had white 24 times in the classic games. He’s played 1.e4 15 times (scoring 53.3%), 1.d4 8 times (75%), and 1.Nf3 once (50%).

High Level Opening breakdown:

Anand as White. Topalov has answered 1.e4 with 1...c5 17 times, with 1...e5 6 times, and with 1...c6 once.

Respecting the 17 Sicilians, Topalov has played 2...d6 15 times, 2...e6 once, and 2...Nc6 once. Of those Sicilians with 2...d6, 15 have been Najdorfs (61.5%), and 2 Dragons (25%). Against the Najdorfs, Anand has played 8 English Attacks (75%), 3 Classics (6.Be2)(33.3%), and 2 6.f3s (50%). Against the English Attack, Topalov has played 6...e5 (83.3%), 6...e6 (66.7%), and 6...Ng4 (75%).

All of the six 1...e5s have led to the Ruy Lopez (66.6%), with two of those being Berlins (50%).

Topalov as White. Anand has answered 15 1.e4s with eight 1...e5s, four 1...c5s, two 1...c6s, and an 1...e6. Three of the 1...e5s have been Petroffs (33%) and the others classical Ruys (40%).

Against the Sicilian, Topalov has played everything but the English Attack: one 6.Be2, one Bg5, one f3, and one Bc4. He won all of these games save the 6.Be2 game, which was drawn.

Anand has played only 1...Nf6 against the six 1.d4s. Four of these have been Queen’s Indians (83.6%), and two Nimzos (50%, both drawn). Topalov scored 75% against the Caro-Kanns, and won against the French in a Burns variation.

Conclusions: None.

Okay, but not taking this too seriously, Topalov should play the Dragon, and not get into the English Attack against Anand, or he should play the Berlin. Anand should avoid the Sicilian, or consider other than the Najdorf, or play the Petroff against 1.e4. He should go back to the drawing board against 1.d4.

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