"Peter Leko is favourite"
Michael Adams believes the Hungarian has the advantage in Fischer Random Chess
by Hartmut Metz, May 2001, translation by Harald Fietz (Figo)
Michael Adams is a man of few words. The Englishman prefers to work out things for himself - and he is pretty good at it. The 29 year old has now reached no. 4 in the world rating list. Last year Adams showed his superiority at the Chess Classic when he won the Masters and thereby climbed to the very top of the world rating list in rapid chess. This year Adams, who was at the age of 17 the youngest ever British champion, will compete in an exceptional match in Mainz: Adams and the no. 7 in the world rating list, Peter Leko of Hungary, will be the first top-level grandmasters to face each other in Fischer Random Chess - between 26 and 29 June (at 3 p.m. each day in the Rheingoldhalle). There the initial position of pieces will be determined by drawing lots. In addition, Leko and Adams will play against the Pocket Fritz computer at the Chess Classic Mainz on 30 June (at 1 p.m.). Hartmut Metz interviewed the laconic top player.
Metz: This match against Peter Leko seems to be a historic event. Have you ever played Fischer Random Chess with friends?
Michael Adams: No. I have no experience of Fischer Random Chess.
Metz: What do you expect from your match against Leko?
Adams: I think it will be very difficult for me as I have no experience with the game.
Metz: Do you think Fischer Random favours you? It seem that you play uncommon positions more easily than Leko.
Adams: No, I think that Peter will be a big favourite with his greater experience of the game.
Metz: Do you think there are good prospects for Fischer Random Chess in future? Or do you agree with people who say: standard chess is difficult enough?
Adams: I will be able to give you a better answer to this after the match. Standard chess is most certainly difficult enough but it is always interesting to try something different.
Metz: What final result do you expect for your eight games?
Adams: As I said before I think my opponent is the favourite.
Metz: And against the handheld, which is less strong than last year's Fritz on Primergy?
Adams: It is hard to make predictions when playing against computers but I hope that I can do OK.
Metz: At the very least another highlight of the Chess Classic Mainz is the battle of the world champions. You played the whole time in the FIDE championships. This means you have always regarded Viswanathan Anand as the only world champion?
Adams: I only had the opportunity to participate in the FIDE world championships but I have great respect for both Anand and Kramnik.
Metz: What result does the world number one in rapid chess predict for the battle?
Adams: I think the match will be very close, but perhaps Vishy is a slight favourite in rapid chess.
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