Jonathan Rowson

Jonathan Rowson

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Jonathan Rowson

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Jonathan Rowson (born 18 April 1977 in Aberdeen) is Scotland's third chess Grandmaster, after Paul Motwani and Colin McNab, and has played first board at recent Chess Olympiads. He is also a chess author.


He made his Scotland debut for the national Primary School team in the match against England in 1988. At this time he attended Skene square Primary School, though he later attended Aberdeen Grammar School where a Maths teacher, Mr Michael Wilson, organised and encouraged the school team. Although in 1988 he was not the best player in his age-group at the time, his progress was rapid and he began competing on the world stage in 1991, winning a silver medal in the European Under 18 Championship in 1995 (behind Robert KempiƄski of Poland).

After taking a year out to study chess in the wake of this success, he went to Keble College, Oxford University where he earned a first class degree in Philosophy, Politics and Economics. Rowson has an interest in Eastern thought and, following a year at Harvard, completed a PhD thesis on Wisdom at Bristol University, supervised by Guy Claxton.

He came second in the European Under 20 Championship in 1997 and achieved his third and final Grandmaster norm (and with it the title) in the 1999 Scottish Chess Championship. He went on to win the event again in 2001 and 2004, completing a rare double when he went on to become the 2004 British Champion. He successfully defended his British title...
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