I'm very sad to write here, for those who doesn't already know, that Australian GM Ian Rogers, 47 years old, has announced his retirement from competitive chess. This happened a few days ago in Adelaide, in his home country, where Ian won the last tournament of his career with 6/7.
"Last Sunday, following the final round of the Checkmate Open in Adelaide, I announced my retirement from all forms of tournament chess", Rogers wrote in his column in yesterday's Sydney Sun-Herald. "The decision, made six days earlier, was not voluntary but was based on unanimous medical opinion that the stress of tournament chess had caused, and would continue to cause, serious health problems unless I stopped permanently". The Closet Grandmaster reports this statement at the following address, http://closetgrandmaster.blogspot.com/2007/07/for-rogers-rp-fans.html, but I haven't found it on Sun-Herald's site (http://sunherald.com.au/). May you help me?
Many Blogs and sites have also written about Ian's decision. Chessexpress says: "GM Ian Rogers, Australia's number 1 player for over 20 years, has won the Lidums Checkmate Open that has just been completed in Adelaide [...]. At the closing ceremony he then announced his retirement from competitive chess, due to health reasons. Unfortunately Ian has a medical condition that is exacerbated by the stress of tournament play and therefore cannot compete at the highest level. He played in the Adelaide tournament to fulfill a commitment he made to the organisers, knowing in advance that this would be his last tournament". Full story: http://chessexpress.blogspot.com/2007/07/gm-ian-rogers-retires-winner.html.
And the Australian Chess Federation site: "Grandmaster Ian Rogers stunned the audience at the prize-giving ceremony for the Lidums Checkmate Open by announcing his retirement from all tournament chess, effective immediately. His retirement was forced upon him by medical advice that was too positive to ignore. Ian had just won the event so at least he was able to retire on a winning note. Australian chess players will miss Ian on the tournament scene. Fortunately, he will still be able to write and coach, two activities that helped to create his reputation as arguably the most influential chess player Australia has produced". Etc. Full story: http://www.auschess.org.au/newsletter/issue/406.html.
You can read my previous post about Ian (a small tribute to him) at http://midaschess.blogspot.com/2007/05/ian-rogers-n-1-chess-globetrotter.html. Although he won't play competitive chess anymore, I'm sure Ian will remain a great chess journalist and trainer. And now I'm really waiting for his auto-biography (about his travels and games - possibly with a huge amount of anecdotes). Go Ian, go!