India’s Grandmaster Viswanathan Anand won his fifth world championship today in a tense, sudden death tie break with Israel’s Boris Gelfand. The tournament went into a four game tie break after Anand and Gelfand drew their twelfth game on Monday. Both men had won one victory apiece, while tying the other ten games. The second tiebreak game broke the continuous deadlock, as Anand prevailed in time over Gelfand in a very aggressive game. If they had remained tied after the four games, they would have played a special, “Armageddon” game where White would have gotten a time advantage while Black would have won in case of a draw.
Anand said afterwards that he “simply hung on for dear life,” in the final games that were witnessed by millions on the Internet. The “Tiger of Madras” is a national hero in India, and continues to build on his legacy as one of the greatest chess players of all time.