Viswanathan Anand casts his spell on city of joy

Sportstar - - INDIAN PLAYGROUND -

A charmer and a cham­pion, Viswanathan Anand is loved wher­ever he goes. The crowd can never get enough of him. They want his au­to­graphs and to be pho­tographed with him. As much as pos­si­ble, Anand is known to ac­com­mo­date all such re­quests.

Kolkata’s chess­lov­ing au­di­ence won over all the par­tic­i­pants of the Tata Steel chess and Anand was no dif­fer­ent. As it turned out, he could pro­duce just what the crowd wanted as he more than made up for his be­low­par show­ing in the rapid sec­tion by win­ning the blitz ti­tle in a spec­tac­u­lar man­ner.

“I wanted to show the au­di­ence what is it that I do in some other part of the world all the time and it was nice to be able to do it here. It’s a dif­fer­ent au­di­ence than every­where else. On top of that, to­day was just like a dream,” Anand said on re­ceiv­ing the win­ner’s salver.

“It’s long been a dream of mine. And we have ticked the other boxes, we have good Opens (tour­na­ments), we have strong play­ers. But the one thing that was lack­ing was fre­quent vis­its by the top play­ers in the world. Now we have that. So it meant a lot to me to be able to play here in In­dia, and es­pe­cially here in Kolkata,” said Anand.

RAKESH RAO

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