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Miguel Najdorf

NAJDORF, MIGUEL (1910–1997), Polish-Argentinean chess grandmaster. Born in Warsaw, Poland, as Mieczysław Najdorf, at age 20 he was an International Chess Master. In 1939, at the outbreak of the World War II he was in Buenos Aires, where he participated in the 8th Chess Olympiad representing Poland. He decided to stay in Argentina and became separated from his family. There he adopted Argentine nationality and developed his chess prowess, although for many years he worked in insurance. Between 1943 and 1965 he won many international tournaments. In 1950 Najdorf became an International Grandmaster. He played well in Candidates' tournaments, in 1950 (finishing in fifth place) and 1953 (finishing sixth). He won important contests in Mar del Plata (1961) and Havana (1962 and 1964). In the Chess Olympiads in Helsinki he obtained second place. Najdorf was noted for some extraordinary feats of simultaneous play. At São Paulo in 1950 he played 250 boards, winning 226 and drawing 15. His blindfold exhibitions were also impressive. At one time he held the record of 40 such games played simultaneously.

Sources: Encyclopaedia Judaica. © 2007 The Gale Group. All Rights Reserved.