Due to the Covid-19 Pandemic, Anish has been very active in online events over the past months. And with success! He won the Mr. Dodgy Invitational Blitz KO, beating David Navara in the final (7-2) and in the very strong Chessable Masters (Rapid), Anish made it to the final as well (beating Grischuk (quarterfinals) and Nepomniachtchi (semifinals), and winning his qualification group convincingly (1st place). However, in the final World Champion Magnus Carlsen was too strong (2-0 in sets), although Anish missed several chances to force at least an extra set.
In the Chess24 Legends Tournament, Anish ended 3rd in a very strong field, qualifying for the semifinals (together with Nepomniachtchi, Svidler and Carlsen). In a thrilling and fascinating semifinal, Anish eventually lost a very close match to Ian Nepomniachtchi with 2-1 in sets. The tournament was won by Magnus Carslen, who impressively won all his matches in this prestigious event.
Anish played several other events as well, some online simuls, some bullet chess, some banter blitz. Doing so, he clearly improved his Rapid- and Blitz play in the period that there were no over-the-board-tournaments.
And not only was he very active as an online player, moreover Anish started his new YouTube Channel, with over 50.000 subscribers and many followers in a few weeks time. It once again proved how popular Anish is on the social media.
See this link: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC9Zs0DGUuenE23tObR50jJQ
Meanwhile Anish is patiently waiting to come back in the over-the-board tournaments. Latest news was origibally that the second part of the Candidates was about to be resumed in Yekaterinenburg, 1-12 November 2020, but mid-October FIDE has announced that the second part of the Candidates Tournament will be held in Spring 2021. Dates and place to be confirmed.
Latest news: in January 2021 Anish will play his first over-the-board tournament since March 2020, the 83rd Tata Steel Chess Tournament. And in fact Anish played very well, finishing shared first with his fellow countryman Jorden van Foreest. The armageddon game was won by Van Foreest, despite a much better position for Anish (also in the other two Blitz games). All and all a very good event for Anish: he won 12,4 rating points and is back in the top-10!! (Virtually 7th place now).
From Saturday 6. February Anish will play in the Opera Euro Rapid online, part of the Meltwater Champions Chess Tour.
On Friday 19. and Saturday 20. February Anish has played for Optiver in the World Corporate Chess Championship 2021 (online). Anish played on board one for his sponsor Optiver, together with the Optiver-employees Javier Alcaraz Ortega, David Pardo Simon and Lucrezia Menoncello. Eventually Optiver was playing for qualification for the quarterfinals in the 6th and last round, but a loss to Group Favourite Stanley Morgan led to a shared 4th place in Group C, which still was a fine result. Anish scored 5,5-6 at board-1.
Before the start of the second part of the Candidates (Yekaterinburg, 19-28. April 2021, confirmed), Anish will remain active in the online Champions Tour Rapid, while he will start his preparations for the Candidates soon.