Lifestyle & Belief

Viswanathan Anand: Chess champion meets Vladimir Putin for tea


India's defending world chess champion Viswanathan Anand is garlanded in the award ceremony of the FIDE world chess championship match in Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow on May 31, 2012.



Russia's President Vladimir Putin invited world chess champion Viswanathan Anand and runner-up Boris Gelfand to his house for a cup of tea.

Putin is said to have congratulated both players for "an outstanding game," according to the Associated Press.

Anand told Putin he had learned to play chess in a Soviet cultural center in his hometown in India when he was a child, reported The Times of India.

"So we brought this on ourselves!" Putin is said to have replied.

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Runner-up Gelfand was born in the Soviet Union and immigrated to Israel in 1998, according to the Pantagraph. He was cheered on at the championship match — which was played at one of Russia's finest museums, the Tretyakov Gallery — like a hometown hero.

Anand beat Gelfand on Wednesday 2.5 to 1.5 in a fast-moving tiebreaker following a 6 to 6 draw, reported the AP.

According to The Times of India, this was Anand's fourth world title win in a row. The India chess wiz claimed the first in 2000, and then won three in a row in 2007, 2008 and 2010. He has been world champion since 2007.

He received a gold medal, $1.4 million worth of prize money, a trophy and a piece of contemporary art showing Anand and Gelfand for his most recent win, reported India's IBN.