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Larsen, Bent

Bent Jorgen Larsen, born March 4, 1935, is a Danish Grandmaster (1956) who now lives in Buenos Aires with his Argentinean wife. In 1954 at the age of 19, he won the Danish championship and became an International Master.  Larsen won the Danish championship every time he entered for the next 10 years.  In 1956 he played first board of the Danish team at the chess Olympiad in Moscow and got the Gold medal for his +11 =6 –1 on board one.   In 1966 when Larsen beat Geller in a match, it was the first time in a match that a Soviet Grandmaster had ever lost to a foreigner.  Bent Larsen was the first GM to lose to a computer in a tournament competition, 1988.  To supplement his income, he translates detective stories into Danish.  In 1953 Larsen labored all night on an adjourned game to find a winning line.  Then he tried to get a few hours sleep.  He lost the game because he had overslept and failed to appear on time.  He has won the Interzonal 3 times (1964 in Amsterdam, 1967 in Sousse, and 1976 in Biel) and is the only player to do this.  In 1967 he was awarded the Chess Oscar as player of the year.  In 1988 Larsen lost a game to Deep Thought, becoming the first Grandmaster to be defeated by a computer in tournament play.  The opening 1.b3 is sometimes called Larsen’s Opening.  His nickname is “The Great Dane.”  He won the Canadian Open and the U.S. Open in 1968 and 1970.  He won the second Annual World Open in 1974.

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