World news

Opening Ceremony and Draw

IGF Ranka - Thu, 11/12/2014 - 06:51

Vlad Marinescu, Director General of SportAccord, speaking at the 2014 WMG Opening Ceremony

The fourth SportAccord World Mind Games was officially opened at an evening ceremony held on December 10 in the banquet hall of the  V-Continent Beijing Parkview Wuzhou hotel near the Beijing International Conference Center, which will be the competition venue. The ceremony itself was comparatively simple. Some of the tournament officials were introduced, representative players from each of the five disciplines were marched onto the stage, and everyone stood for the playing of the Chinese national anthem and the SportAccord anthem. Vlad Marinescu, Director General of SportAccord, then gave a short speech, ending succinctly with the words ‘May the best mind win.’ Mr Li Yingchuan, Director of the Beijing Municipal Bureau of Sports, welcomed the contestants to Beijing, thanked the sponsors and organizers, and wished everyone a good time and a successful Games. This was followed by an excellent buffet dinner, giving the contestants a good chance to socialize with the opponents they will face during the week ahead.

For a group of go players and officials, dinner was followed by a technical meeting presided over by chief referee Hua Yigang, with assistance from technical delegate Shigeno Yuki and interpretation by Zhang Wei. The meeting began with greetings from Mr Hua and Ms Shigeno, proceeded through a summary of the rules, and then moved on to the main order of business: the drawing of the team, pair, and player numbers, which were incorporated into a prearranged schedule in each event.

EGF President Martin Stiassny (right) drawing for the European team

In the drawing for the round robin men’s team event, Korea, China, and Chinese Taipei, which finished 1-2-3 last year, drew numbers 1, 2, and 3, while Japan drew 6, Europe drew 5, and North America drew 4. This means that in the first round on December 11 Korea will play Japan, China will play Europe, and Chinese Taipei will play North America. In three other matches of note, China and Korea will lock horns in the second round on December 12, Europe will play North America in the third round on December 13, and Japan will tackle Chinese Taipei in the fifth round on December 15.

The draw for the women’s double knockout individual event began with the drawing of numbers for the four players who had been given byes in the first round: Rui Naiwei (China), Choi Jeong (Korea), Fujisawa Rina (Japan), and Joanne Missingham (Chinese Taipei). First Ms Rui and Ms Choi drew for numbers 1 and 12, Ms Rui drawing number 1. This draw also determined the numbers of their teammates Yu Zhiying (9) and Kim Chaeyoung (4). A similar procedure determined the numbers of the players from Chinese Taipei and Japan, after which the players from Europe and North America drew for the remaining numbers. As a result of this drawing protocol, no two players from the same country, territory, or region will meet in the first two rounds. In the first round on December 11, Russia’s Svetlana Shikshina (2) will play Japan’s Okuda Aya (3), Korea’s Kim Chaeyoung will play Russia’s Dina Burdakova (5), Canada’s Irene Sha (8) will play China’s Yu Zhiying, and Chinese Taipei’s Cathy Chang (10) will play Russia’s Natalia Kovaleva (10).

The pair drawing protocol was like the women’s protocol without byes. The four pairs from the Far East drew for numbers 1, 4, 5, and 8; then the pairs from Europe and North America drew for the remaining numbers, so that the pairs from Europe and North America drew Far Eastern opponents in the first round. Since the pair competition will include play-offs for third to sixth places, all pairs will play at least two games.

- James Davies

Categories: World news

Players Converge on Beijing for the 4th SportAccord WorldMind Games

IGF Ranka - Thu, 11/12/2014 - 03:06

Thirty go players representing the best of China, Chinese Taipei, Europe, North America, Japan, and Korea are preparing to compete with each other and rub shoulders with some of the world’s best bridge, chess, draughts, and xiangqi players at the fourth SportAccord World Mind Games in Beijing. Counting all five disciplines, there will be 150 contestants, drawn from nearly forty countries and territories on six continents. The action will start on December 11 and end on December 17.

Opening Press Conference at the 2014 SAWMG

In go at the past three SportAccord World Mind Games, Korean players dominated the men’s competition, Chinese players dominated the women’s competition, and Chinese and Korean pairs and teams divided the top honors in mixed competition. This year the Chinese men’s team will be thirsting to add a gold medal to the gold won by China’s mixed team in 2011, which was largely a men’s event. Their chances appear good; the Korean team will be handicapped by the absence of their leading player Park Jeonghwan, who was injured in a traffic accident shortly before his scheduled departure for Beijing.

Turning to the other disciplines, not surprisingly, Chinese players have also dominated the xiangqi competition in previous years, and Chinese women have demonstrated considerable prowess at bridge and chess. What is surprising is that Chinese women have been making striking progress in draughts as well, and are currently approaching the top level in that game. Just how close they are will be seen during a week of rapid, blitz, and super-blitz competition on the international standard 10 x 10 board. In men’s draughts competition, two of the players to watch will be from Africa: Cameroon’s Jean Marc Ndjofang, who will challenge Aleksandr Georgiev for the world championship next month, and the Ivory Coast’s N’cho Joel Atse, last year’s blitz sensation. Devotees of the 8 x 8 game will also get a chance to see several world champions in action as this form of draughts returns to the men’s competition.

At a press conference held on December 10, no one ventured to predict the outcome of this year’s mind games, but go ambassador Lee Hajin reminisced about her bronze medal at the World Mind Sports Games in 2008, and her subsequent university career. ‘The concentration and discipline I gained from go worked for my other studies,’ she said, ‘and I graduated at the head of my class.’

Viktoriia Motrichko, a draughts player and ambassador from the Ukraine, said ‘I consider myself an emotional person, and the emotions I feel here are all good.’

Women’s chess champion Hou Yifan said, ‘This fast-paced tournament is interesting for the spectators and it favors my style of play.’

Tang Sinan, a young Chinese xiangqi player said, ‘The SportAccord World Mind games are a super-platform for us to demonstrate our xiangqi skills. I hope all the publicity will encourage more people to get interested in the game.’

Bridge ambassador Fulvio Fantoni, a member of the crack Monaco team, said ‘When I visited the schools in Beijing during this event last year I was touched by the students’ passion and enthusiasm. It took me back to my own youth, when I felt that way too.’

Gianarrigo Rona, president of the World Bridge Federation, echoed his sentiments by saying ‘In my opinion, the enthusiasm that Beijing schoolchildren are showing for mind games is the real measure of the SportAccord’s success.’

- James Davies

Categories: World news

UK Go Updates: Andrew Kay Holds British Championship; Local Winner at Warwick; UK Youth Go team triumphs over Italy; Race for 2014 Youth Grand Prix reaches final month

AGA news - Wed, 10/12/2014 - 15:00

Andrew Kay Holds British Championship: November 29, Andrew Kay defeated Alex Kent to retain the British Championship by three games to nil. The game will be made available shortly, with commentary from Matthew Macfadyen.

Local Winner at Warwick: The Coventry Tournament at the University of Warwick had a local winner for the second year in a row. Philip Leung (5d) took first at the tournament organized by former winner Bruno Poltronieri. Second was Wu Ruizhu (5d) also from Warwick and third was Alison Bexfield from Letchworth. 32 players took part.

UK Youth Go team triumphs over Italy: The UK Youth Go team is one of 13 teams signed up to the European Youth Go Team Championship 2014/15. In the second round of matches, the UK team beat Italy on Sat. 29th November. Congratulations to the team for their 4-1 win, which places the UK currently 6th out of the 13 teams taking part. The next round is scheduled for Saturday 13 December.

Race for 2014 Youth Grand Prix reaches final month: December – the final month of the 2014 Youth Grand Prix. The three winners, who will receive cash prizes of either £50, £30 and £20, are predicted to be among four talented youths. There are still 3 tournaments in UK, with plenty of opportunities for other players to rise to the top.
- compiled/edited by Amy Su, based on reports on the BGA website 



Sincerely,
Amy Su

Categories: World news

Your Move/Readers Write: Peter Freedman Urges Support for AGF

AGA news - Wed, 10/12/2014 - 13:00

“I just received a request from the American Go Foundation for a contribution towards their work,” writes Portland Go Chapter Organizer Peter Freedman. “I will again this year donate $100, and urge everyone who reads this to donate something. While about 130 donors are listed on this year’s request, there’s no reason why we cannot double that number this year!  There are lots of you out there, and, what go player does not appreciate the AGF’s efforts to bring go to children?  Please celebrate the holidays this year with a gift to the AGF…and while you are at it, thank the AGF people for all their efforts to bring go to children and youth.”

 

 

Categories: World news

Electronic Go Board Inventor Seeking N.A. Partners

AGA news - Tue, 09/12/2014 - 14:00
The inventor of a physical go board that records moves and enables online play on an actual board is looking for North American partners to market it in the West. According to Sihong Zhou, the board, which lights up to show where your opponent has played, is compatible with some go servers, like Tygem/eWeiqi or Sina. Additional features, Zhou says, include joseki and tesuji training, games against a computer program up to 4d, and a built-in game clock. More details are available, in Chinese, on the RuiQi Tech website. Those interested may email Zhou in Shenzhen China at 1838349552@qq.com.
Categories: World news

GoGameGuru and AGA offer Joint BadukTV English Holiday Membership Promotion

AGA news - Tue, 09/12/2014 - 01:52

Anyone who joins, renews or extends their membership with the AGA between now and New Year’s Day will receive two months of free access to BadukTV English, AGA President Andy Okun announced. “We’re grateful to GoGameGuru, David Ormerod and the folks at BadukTV for this generous offer,” Okun said.  People who are already BadukTV English subscribers can opt instead for a free go book (US shipping address only, limited choice of titles). AGA life members who request it can take advantage of the two months without doing anything, as it would be tricky to extend their memberships, Okun said.  Baduk TV English takes the best of the 24-hour Korean cable channel Baduk TV, with lessons, game commentary and problems analyzed by professionals, and adds English subtitles.  There are several hundred hours of material in the library already and new material all the time. After joining or renewing, click here to take advantage of the offer.

Categories: World news

Horn & Cha Top Davis-Sac Winter Tourney

AGA news - Mon, 08/12/2014 - 23:00

The Davis/Sacramento Go Club held its Winter Tournament on December 6th at the Arden-Dimick library in Sacramento. There were 14 players, including three who were playing in their first AGA tournament: Clete Reader, Laura Sparks, and Barry Stiefel. Jeff Horn 1D (left) won the upper division and Tai-An Cha 5k (right) won the lower division, both with 3-1 scores.
- Willard Haynes

Categories: World news

This Week’s Go Calendar: Arlington

AGA news - Mon, 08/12/2014 - 14:00

December 13: Arlington, VA
NOVA presents the Slate and Shell Open
Gary Smith gary@novagoclub.org 703-254-6429

Get the latest go events information.

Categories: World news

4th SportAccord World Mind Games Kick Off Next Week

AGA news - Mon, 08/12/2014 - 00:05

The 4th SportAccord World Mind Games (SAWMG) will be held in Beijing December 11-17. Contestants will compete for gold, silver, and bronze medals in five areas: go, chess, contract bridge, draughts and xiangqi (Chinese chess). The go competition will follow the same format as last year: 18 men representing China, Chinese Taipei, Europe, Japan, Korea, and North America will compete in a three-man team round-robin; 12 women from the same areas will compete in an individual  double knockout; and 16 of these contestants will also compete in a single knockout mixed pair tournament.

The Chinese team this year is comprised of 5 professionals, four 9 dans and a 5 dan. The players participating in this year’s SAWMG are older than last year’s, with only 3 teenagers divided between the Chinese, Japanese, and North American teams, including the granddaughter of Fujisawa Shuko, who is returning for her second SAWMG.

The European and North American teams are fielding mixed pro-amateur teams. The North American team is comprised of three veteran players and one young Canadian woman, Ming Jiu Jiang 7P, Huiren Yang 1P, Daniel Daehyuk Ko 7D and Irene Sha 6D. The European team is primarily Russian, but also includes a professional 2 dan from France.

Coverage of the SAWMG will begin on the 11th, with daily reports and commentaries posted on the RANKA website. Click here for the schedule.
- Amy Su, based on reports on Ranka.
Correction: updated to reflect that it’s the granddaughter of Fujisawa Shuko (not the daughter) who will be playing

Categories: World news

Galway go tournament announced

Irish Go Association - Sun, 07/12/2014 - 14:36

There will be a one day tournament in Galway on Sunday January 18th. See the Galway Club’s Facebook Group for up to date details. The expected format is also given below:

Date : Sunday 18th of January
Location : St-Mary’s College, St-Mary’s Road Galway City
https://goo.gl/maps/OAzJU

30mn by player + 2x30s byoyomi
4 rounds
Handicap Swiss tournament

Registration/Welcoming of the players : 9h15-9h45

First round : 10h – 11h30
Second round : 11h45 – 13h15
-lunch break-
Third round : 14h00 – 15h30
Fourth round : 15h45 – 17h15

Prize ceremony : 17h30

Categories: World news

Ulster Championship

Irish Go Association - Sun, 07/12/2014 - 12:15

This year the Belfast Club created an Ulster Championship, in which 4 players took part. Losing out in the semi-finals were Paul Kelly and James Aitken. The final was won by James Hutchinson, who beat Tiberiu Gociu by the score of 2-0. The games from the final are attached for you to play through.

Round 1 of the final:

gliftWidget = glift.create({"divId":"glift_display1","sgf":"http:\/\/www.irish-go.org\/wp-content\/uploads\/2014\/12\/JamesHB_TiberiuGW.sgf","display":{"drawBoardCoords":"1"}});

 

Please enable JavaScript to view this game. Download SGF

 

Round 2 of the final:

gliftWidget = glift.create({"divId":"glift_display2","sgf":"http:\/\/www.irish-go.org\/wp-content\/uploads\/2014\/12\/2014UlsterFinalRound2-2.sgf","display":{"drawBoardCoords":"1"}});

 

Please enable JavaScript to view this game. Download SGF

 

Since EidoGo seems not to work with the latest wordpress, I am using the Glift plugin to display the games instead.

Categories: World news

2015 Irish Go and Chinese Chess Congress

Irish Go Association - Sat, 06/12/2014 - 13:54

The Irish Go Association in association with The UCD Confucius Institute for Ireland is pleased to present the 2015 Irish Go & Chinese Chess Congress. The events will take place from February 6th to 8th. While this will be the 26th annual Open Go tournament, it will also host Ireland’s first ever Chinese Chess tournament. The Congress will take place at its new location at The Gresham Hotel right in the heart of Dublin’s city centre, and will be comprised of three tournaments:

– The Rapid Go Tournament
– The Confucius Cup Go Tournament
– The Confucius Cup Chinese Chess Tournament

Full details here

 

Categories: World news

EuroGoTV Update: Ukraine, Turkey, Russia

AGA news - Fri, 05/12/2014 - 17:00

Ukraine: Yevhen Kolodin 4k took the Vitalii Trost Memorial on November 30 in Odesa. Serhii Stupachenko 9k placed second and Oleksandr Viter 7k was third. Turkey: Also on November 30, the Turkish Go Championship finished in Istanbul with Ozgur Degirmenci 3d in first, Kerem Karaerkek 2d in second, and Hayri Kilic 1d in third. Russia: Anton Zantonskikh 6d bested Andrej Arkharov 2d at the Championship of Khabarovsk District on November 23. Sergej Kastorin 4d came in third.
– Annalia Linnan, based on reports from EuroGoTV, which include complete result tables and all the latest European go news

Categories: World news

Your Move/Readers Write: Where to Play Go

AGA news - Fri, 05/12/2014 - 12:09

“Do you have any info on Washington DC or Northern VA Go association?” asks Jonathan Kim.
Click on a state here to see a list of AGA chapters and other clubs and meeting places for go players in that state. Official chapters of the American Go Association are indicated by the AGA logo. Click on a chapter or club name to visit their webpage, if available.

Categories: World news

China, Japan, and Korea All Contenders in 16th Nongshim Cup Finals

AGA news - Thu, 04/12/2014 - 22:30

Players met from November 28 to December 3 in Busan, Korea for the 2nd round of the Nongshim Cup. China’s performance was especially stunning with Wang Xi 9p winning four games in a row before he was defeated by Korea’s top player Park Junghwan 9p. Pressure was on Japan in game ten when Park faced Japan’s top player Iyama Yuta 9p (right). However, Iyama came through and secured a place for Japan in the Nongshim Cup Finals for the first time since the 12th Nongshim Cup in 2010-2011.

Shanghai will host the final round of the 16th Nongshim Cup in March 2015. Kim Jiseok 9p will represent Korea while China has Shi Yue 9p, Mi Yuting 9p, and Lian Xiao 7p on its roster. Historically, the Nongshim Cup has been dominated by Korean players (11 wins) while Japan has only won once. For more information on this year’s Nongshim Cup including photos, game records, and commentary, please visit Go Game Guru.
–Annalia Linnan, based on a longer article by Go Game Guru

Categories: World news

Strong Young North American Player Sought For Brand-New Hangzhou Tournament

AGA news - Thu, 04/12/2014 - 12:06

The AGA has just received a request to send a young North American (US or Canadian) player to Hangzhou, China, for the new Li Min Cup World Best Go Star Championship Finals from December 18 to 24, AGA President Andy Okun reports to the EJ. The player, who can be a citizen or permanent resident, should meet the AGA’s eligibility requirements and must have been born after Jan. 1, 1991. Food and lodging are being provided by the organizers along with travel expenses of up to 10,000 RMB (about $1,600).

“While this is a last-minute thing, I have been to Hangzhou and this is a trip worth making if at all possible,” Okun said. The venue of the tournament, Hangzhou Qiyuan’s Tianyuan Tower, is a 34-floor go-themed luxury hotel with a major go school and library and a go museum in the lobby (THE TRAVELING GO BOARD: HANGZHOU’S TOWER OF GO 5/27/2010 EJ). Interested players should respond as soon as possible to Okun at president@usgo.org and Cherry Shen at tournaments@usgo.org. If there are multiple interested players, a quick play-off may be held.

Categories: World news

Chess and Go Tourney in Portland

AGA news - Wed, 03/12/2014 - 23:53

Three Portland schools competed in a chess and go tournament, on Nov. 30th, reports organizer Peter Freedman. Four go players and four chess players from each school participated.  Go was played on 13×13 boards. Irvington edged out Beverly Cleary to take the go trophy, and also edged out Richmond to take the chess trophy. Chess results: Irvington 9 wins, Richmond 6 wins and Beverly Cleary 3 wins. Go results: Irvington 8 wins, Beverly Cleary 7 wins, and Richmond 3 wins. -Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor

Categories: World news

INAF Takes Next Step Towards New East Coast Go Center

AGA news - Tue, 02/12/2014 - 23:20

The Iwamoto North America Foundation (INAF) has taken another step toward establishing a new East Coast Go Center, releasing an Announcement of Intended Request for Proposals. INAF “seeks proposals from interested parties for the establishment of a center that would help promote Go in the center’s local area, serve as a resource for east coast go activities, and contribute to a more vibrant Go community nationally.” A formal request for proposals is expected to be released in July 2015 with proposals due in November 2015 and an award made in January 2016. Interested groups should contact INAF for discussions on how to proceed.

Categories: World news

AGA City League Off to a Good Start

AGA news - Tue, 02/12/2014 - 13:23

Most of the games for the first round of the 2014-2015 AGA City League have been played already “and they were spectacular,” says TD Steve Colburn. “With many of the strong AGA and CGA players playing we have seen some exciting games.”

Results:
A League:
Boston def Canwa Vancouver 1 (2-1), Greater Washington def San Francisco 1 (2-1), Los Angeles def Seattle 1 (3-0)

B League:
Bay Area def Washington DC 2 (2-1), Princeton def Canwa Vancouver 2 (2-1)
Still ongoing: NC Raleigh vs Katy TX 1 (1-1), last game to be played Dec 18 9:30ET

C League:
DC Team 3 def Boston 2 (3-0), SF Bay Area/Berkley def Atlanta 2 (2-1)
Still ongoing: Atlanta 1 vs New Orleans, times TBA

Categories: World news

This Week’s Go Calendar: Sacramento and Seattle

AGA news - Mon, 01/12/2014 - 14:29

December 6: Sacramento, CA
Davis/Sacramento Winter Quarterly
Willard Haynes willard@emeritus.csus.edu 916-929-6112

December 7: Seattle, WA
Monthly Ratings Tournament
Brian Allen manager@seattlego.org 206-632-1122 206-545-1424

Get the latest go events information.

Categories: World news
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