The Shmooze

Israeli Chess Fest

By Alex Eidman

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In a whirlwind affair, 30 year-old Israeli grandmaster Alik Gershon broke a world record Thursday when he played 523 people simultaneously. The display took place in Rabin Square in Tel-Aviv and lasted over 19 hours.

According to the New York Times, Gershon needed to beat at least 80 percent of his opponents and easily topped that, beating 458, drawing with 58 and losing to 11 for a 92 percent winning record. To add to his impressive feat, Natan Sharansky was reported to be one of Gershon’s opponents. The previous record was set last year by Iranian grandmaster Morteza Mahjoob, who played 500 people. Gershon was happy to have beaten a record held by Iran but added, “Hopefully this is the only war we are going to have with this enemy, ever.”


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