by Anand

 

There are some things we do much better than computers, but since most of chess is tactically based they do many things better than humans. And this imbalance remains. I no longer have any issues. It’s bit like asking an astronomer, does he mind that a telescope does all the work. He is used to it. It is just an incredible tool that you can use.

 

I think the average player today is stronger than the average player 20 years ago. More people are playing and more people have access to more tools. The average depth in chess is higher. More people are getting GM title because the level is increasing. The players are stronger. (2012)

 

Just before a game, I try to keep a clear mind so that I can focus better. I'm the kind of person who plays fast and relies a lot on intuition, so being at peace with myself is vital. Saying my daily prayers helps me achieve this heightened state of mind.

 

Chess is like a language, the top players are very fluent at it. Talent can be developed scientifically but you have to find first what you are good at.

 

Nowadays, when you're not a grandmaster at 14, you can forget about it.

 

In 1996, the players at the VSB tournament in Amsterdam sent me a card for my wedding with this dedication 'Anand congrats on your wedding. You were a great player, now be ready to lose 50 points'.

 

For me, chess is not a profession. It is a way of life, a passion. People may feel that I have conquered the peak and will not have to struggle. Financially, perhaps that is true; but as far as chess goes, I’m still learning a lot!

 

When I started out playing chess as a kid I thought I should be world champion. As a kid you have no idea what that means and you only sort of picture it. It is hard to imagine that I waited all those years and it happened in a late stage of my career.

 

It is important that you don’t let your opponent impose his style of play on you. A part of that begins mentally. At the chessboard if you start blinking every time he challenges you then in a certain sense you are withdrawing. That is very important to avoid.

 

In 1995 I played a match against [Kasparov] but it is amazing that in the next ten years I was second or third in the rankings—most of the times second and he was first for this entire period—and we just never played each other.

 

I like to think that the arc of my own career has in some ways mirrored the journey of chess. I learned to play in India, then moved to Spain so I could play the European circuit, and won my first world championship in Iran. It's nice when your place in chess history has something to do with the bigger picture.

 

Everyone has their nemesis. For me it was clearly Kasparov. I don’t think I want to make excuses for that.

 

In a way players at the top should try to promote the game in their own countries as that is the legacy that makes you feel proud. If you have not done that you have failed as a sportsperson.

 

For every door the computers have closed they have opened a new one.

 

Confidence is very important – even pretending to be confident. If you make a mistake but do not let your opponent see what you are thinking then he may overlook the mistake.

 

I would never suggest to anyone that they drop school for chess. First of all even if you can make it in chess, your social skills need to be developed there.

 

It is very difficult to play a single blitz game! You want to play for a long time. So I tend not to do that anymore.

 

You could  say that both Fischer and Carlsen had or have the ability to let chess look simple.

 

The taunt from Kramnik about 'lending' me the title, was ridiculous.

on Anand

 

I consider him a “real” World Champion, regardless of the fact that the win against Gelfand in the match wasn’t convincing at all. But that’s a peculiarity of chess: your play can be not particularly convincing in tournaments and then once a year you defend the title of World Champion and the chess world continues to consider you the king.  -  Magnus Carlsen

 

GM Naiditsch reckoned that me playing the King's Indian against Anand was something akin to a samurai running at a machine gun with a sword. - Hikaru Nakamura

 

He's been around for almost 20 years and he's gradually and slowly persevered and come to the zenith of his profession. He won the world title in 2007. He exemplifies superb sportsman spirit. He exemplifies the spirit of India.  -  Geet Sethi

 

Vishy is a brilliant player. But it is very difficult to compete at 40. He is up against people half his age. I will be surprised if he can go on any longer. He can fight against anyone but time.  -  Garry Kasparov

 

Look at the catastrophic record Vishy Anand has against Garry Kasparov. Kasparov managed to beat him almost everywhere they played, even though Vishy Anand has belonged to the absolute top players in the world for fifteen years. This difference cannot be explained purely in chess terms, there must have been some psychology.  -  Vladimir Kramnik

 

I’m out, now you’re the oldest! You’re the dinosaur now! - (comments upon his own retirement)  -  Garry Kasparov

 

The impact that Vishy made for chess in India is unsurpassed. He is a national hero in his homeland and he revolutionized Indian chess.  -  Susan Polgar

Viswanathan Anand is the current World Champion