Alexandre de Fisterra
||This article possibly contains original research. (June 2009)|
|This article relies on references to primary sources. (June 2009)|
He was born in Fisterra (Galicia) in 1919. When his father's shoemaking business failed, the director of his school made Finisterre pay his tuition by correcting the homework of lower grades. Later he became a construction worker and worked in a print shop.
Finisterre was injured during fascist bombings of Madrid in the Spanish civil war. In hospital he saw many children injured and unable to play football. This was his inspiration for table football, which was inspired by the concept of table tennis. Alejandro credits his friend Francisco Javier Altuna, a Basque carpenter, for making the first table football game following Finisterre's directions. Although the invention was patented in 1937, Finisterre had to escape to France after the fascist coup d'état, and he lost the patent papers in a storm.
After he allegedly invented table football (Lucien Rosengart claims to have done so as well) he fled Francisco Franco's Spain to Latin America. His leftish ideology, however, would lead him to problems in Guatemala, where he was kidnapped when Carlos Castillo Armas took over the country, and he was sent by airplane to Madrid. During that flight Alejandro threatened the pilot by telling him that he had explosives (one of the first aircraft hijackings).
The first tournament in honor of the inventor of table football happened in Portugal in 2007 and is repeated every year, the next will be between 29 and 31 May 2009. For more information: http://www.taf.pt.to