Round 1 pairings:

– Morozevich – Kasimdzhanov (This is a very interesting matchup. Morozevich on a good day can beat just about anyone. The question is will he continue to employ many of his romantic openings? Moro is wild. He is capable of +5 or -5. People expect Kasim to finish last. However, he has shown that he can hold his own against elite players and he has strong nerve. This would be the ultimate forum for Kasim to show the world what he’s made of.)

– Polgar – Anand (My sister and Anand have gone back a long way. They have played countless of exciting games against each other. I don’t expect Vishy to over push with the black pieces in the first round. Unless Judit decides to create an issue, I expect it to be a fairly peaceful game.)

– Leko – Topalov (This is the ultimate pairing of round 1. These are two of the favorites of the tournament. Leko has learned to play a lot more aggressively. He is one of the top four players in the world. He plays sound chess and his endgame technique is superb. Topalov is Mr. Excitement. He can beat anyone and he will go for the win with either color. This is a game that may set an early tone for the tournament.)

– Svidler – Adams (Even though both Svidler and Adams have been world-class players for a number of years, neither have shown that they can win a super elite event. They are both very steady but lack that little extra ingredient. I don’t expect either to occupy the top 2 spots in this world championship.)

I predict that a +5 will win the tournament outright. +4 may tie for first.
Posted by Picasa

Chess Daily News from Susan Polgar