Why did you react to Kasparov this time after ignoring his provocation for so long?
This time I definitely could not ignore it. I had to react to it as he went over the top. I didn’t understand why he was doing it. I mean, I can understand his criticism of my results in the tournaments I played last year, but coming to the venue and commenting like this was totally unwarranted. I thought he was trying to affect my equilibrium in the Match.
Do you think it was a mistake not to hit back at Kasparov after the door-banging incident at the 1995 World Championship?
I should not have kept quiet and should have made a formal protest at that time. But this I was thinking way back in 1996 and had stopped thinking about it and moved on. But now, I most definitely think so!
There are rumours that Kasparov, Kramnik and Aronian had been helping Gelfand...
I had heard about Aronian, but I haven’t heard about Kasparov and Kramnik helping him.
Was it pleasant to sit across a friendly face (Gelfand) at the World Championship this time round?
It wasn’t that bad before. Topalov was not talking, but was not unpleasant while Kramnik was friendly. Gelfand was warm and impeccable in his attitude.
This interview was done on Friday. Anand was scheduled to leave for Spain on Saturday and so could not be contacted for a reaction to Gelfand’s latest comments.