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Published on May 20, 2012
Boris Gelfand strayed away from the continuation that marked the first and third games at move number six, by choosing to play 6. Qc2, a move that he had previously used in practice. Black had an isolated pawn in the centre, but the Champion decided to sacrifice it and castled short on the fourteenth move (14...0-0. Novelty). The Israeli grandmaster refused to say if he had been surprised by Anand's play. "After the 17th move, it became clear that black had a strong shape. White could not bring its pieces out and therefore had to give up a pawn," the challenger summed up. He further noted that only home analysis would show whether he could have tried to save the pawn and play for something more. Both competitors agreed that, despite the material balance that had been restored, white nevertheless continued to apply pressure as its pieces were in more active positions. But black was able to neutralise this threat with a series of precise moves. Viswanathan Anand was happy with the moves 20...Qe6, 21...f6, 22...Qc6, after which black was able to simplify the game and move into a drawing endgame.