With just days to go, there are now over 50 Learn Go Week events planned in 17 countries, including an attempt by 1,004 people in South Korea to break the Guinness World Record for the most simultaneous games of go in one place, on September 21. “It’s not too late to join in if you’re still thinking about it,” says organizer David Ormerud of Go Game Guru. The event officially launches this Saturday: click here to see what’s already planned and here to register your event. Go Game Guru has also prepared a handy event checklist and sample media release to promote local events. “Take plenty of photos and let’s achieve something special together!” Ormerud urges.
by John Power, EJ Japan Correspondent
Members of the New Honinbo League: At first, I wrote “new members of the Honinbo league,” but that’s not quite accurate. Two of the four vacant places in the 70th League were taken by players who had dropped out of the 69th League. One was Takao Shinji 9P (right), who made a comeback after a disappointing 1-6 in the previous league. The other was Yo Seiki 7P, who just missed out in the previous league with a score of 3-4. They were joined by Mimura Tomoyasu 9P, making a comeback after a gap of four years, and Ryu Shikun 9P, who has been out of the league for 11 years.
Results of the playoffs:
(August 28) Ryu Shikun (W) beat Anzai Nobuaki 6P by resig.
(September 4) Takao Shinji (B) beat Murakawa Daisuke 7P by resig.; Mimura Tomoyasu (W) beat Matsumoto Takehisa 7P by resig.; Yo Seiki (W) beat Nakano Hironari 9P by 13.5 points.
Korean Teen Wins Bingsheng Cup: The 5th Qionglong Mt. Bingsheng Cup (also referred to as ‘Qionglong Cup’ on the Net), a Chinese-sponsored tournament for women players, was held from August 30 to September 3 in Suzhou City in China. The winner was the 17-year-old Choi Jeong 5P (left) of Korea; she beat Rui Naiwei 9P in the final. Two Japanese representatives won in the first round, but were eliminated in the second (there are 16 players in the tournament, so there are four rounds). Xie Yimin 6P beat Oh Yoojin 1P of Korea and Fujisawa Rina 2P scored an excellent win over Song Ronghui 5P, one of the top Chinese players. In the second round, Xie lost to Rui and Fujisawa lost to Lu Jia 2P of China. photo courtesy GoGameGuru; click here for their 2012 interview with Choi.
Takao Becomes Tengen Challenger: The play-off to decide the challenger to Iyama Yuta for the 40th Tengen title was held at the Nihon Ki-in in Tokyo on September 8. Playing black, Takao Shinji Judan defeated Kono Rin 9P by resignation after 195 moves. Takao will make his first challenge for the Tengen title. The first game will be played on October 24.
Obituary: Hoshikawa Nobuaki 9P
Hoshikawa Nobuaki died on September 2. Born in Ehime Prefecture on July 7, 1951, Hoshikawa was a disciple of Mukai Kazuo 8P. He became 1P at the Kansai Ki-in in 1970 and reached 8P in 1984. He retired in 2010 and was promoted to 9P. He won the Oteai (rating tournament) twice. Three of his children20are also professionals.
Sasaski Promoted to 9P: And in a follow-up to my July 30 report on the passing of Sasaki Tadashi 8P, the Nihon Kiin recently posthumously awarded Mr. Sasaki with the rank of professional nine-dan.
Registration continues for the 2014-2015 Pandanet-AGA City League. “We’re looking for more teams” in expanded A and B Leagues, reports TD Steve Colburn. Those leagues are expanding to eight teams each. Teams have until Sunday September 28th to send in registrations. Colburn is also looking for a League Manager to help during the year. All teams should contact Steve.Colburn@usgo.org for more information.
Xu Jiayang 2P and Huang Mingyu 5d, both of China, won the 31st World Youth Goe Championship, held in Kuala Lampur, Malaysia from August 13th to 19th. The US players were chosen by the Ing Foundation, and included Albert Yen 6d in the senior division (under 16 years old) and Brandon Zhou 4d in the junior division (under 12 years old). Eric Liu 1d was also invited to compete as a special representative. “I have learned a lot from this tournament,” Yen told the E-Journal, “especially from the games in which I was defeated. I lost to Japan, Taiwan, and Korea. Fortunately, our team leader, Mingjiu Jiang 7p reviewed several of my games so I could learn from my mistakes. Although I wanted to do better than 8th place, I have tried my best. Overall, the 31st World Youth Goe Championship gave me an opportunity to make friends and compete with the top youth players in the world.” Fourteen countries participated, with twelve players in each division. Yen placed 8th in the Senior, while Zhou and Liu placed 6th and 8th in the Junior. The runner up of the Senior was Lee Eodeokdung 5d from Korea, and the runner up in the Junior was Shih Ching Yao 6d from Taiwan. Complete results, plus photos of the event can be found on the 31st WYGC website. -Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor, with Albert Yen. Photo: Albert Yen (l) of the US vs. Low Rea Qiu of Malaysia.
An even dozen players participated in the Davis/Sacramento Go Club’s Fall Tournament, held at the Arden-Dimick Library in Sacramento on September 6th. Jeff Horn 1D (right) won the upper division on tie breaks, while Roger Schrag 4K (left) won the lower division with a perfect four wins.
- Willard Haynes, TD
by John Power, EJ Japan Correspondent
Yamashita Wins Kisei A League: There are no play-offs in the Kisei Leagues, so there is an built-in bias towards upholding the status quo. When Yamashita Keigo 9P (right) scored his fourth win in the fourth round of the A League, he won the league. In theory, Yamashiro Hiroshi 9P and Kono Rin 9P could both draw level with him on 4-1 after the fifth round if Yamashita loses, but Yamashita is ranked higher, so they can’t catch him.
In the B League, the top-ranked player, Murakawa Daisuke 7P, on 3-0, is the only undefeated player; he also needs only one more win to win the league, so a repeat of the play-off between him and Yamashita to decide the Kisei challenger looks quite possible.(August 28) (A League) Yamashita Keigo 9P (B) beat Hane Naoki 9P by resig. (B League) Yuki Satoshi 9P (W) beat Cho Riyu 8P by resig.
(September 4) (A League) Yamashiro Hiroshi 9P (B) beat Ichiriki Ryo 7P by 2.5 points.
Iyama Defends Gosei Title: For the second year in a row, the Gosei went the full distance, though the course of the match was a little different. Last year, Kono Rin won the first two games and Iyama Yuta the next three. This year, in the 39th Gosei, Kono won the opening game again, but Iyama (left) won the next two before Kono evened the score in the fourth game. The fifth game was played at the Nihon Ki-in in Tokyo on August 29. When the players drew for colors (nigiri), Kono drew black. Kono took the early lead, but he played too tightly at crucial points in the middle game and allowed Iyama to get back into the game. Immediately after this, however, Iyama made one of his rare blunders, a mistake in timing that allowed Kono to win outright a capturing race that should have become a sente seki for Iyama. After the game, Iyama commented that he could well have resigned at this point, but ironically Kono slipped up soon afterwards, making a number of mistakes in what was some very complicated fighting with both players out of time. Iyama took the lead again and this time held on to it. Kono resigned after 220 moves. After the game, it was hard to tell from the players’ expressions who was the winner. Kono recovered his composure very quickly whereas Iyama looked unhappy for quite a while about his bad play. He commented that he had been outplayed by Kono in both this and the previous year’s matches and that he would have to do better in the upcoming Meijin title match. However, a win is a win, and Iyama has not only maintained his sextuple crown but also kept alive the dream of a grand slam next year.
Iyama Makes Good Start in Meijin Defense: The first game of the 39th Meijin title match was held at the Hotel Chinzanso in Tokyo on September 4 and 5. Taking white, Iyama Yuta Meijin won by resignation after 212 moves. Both he and the challenger Kono Rin 9P (right) were down to their final minute of byo-yomi. Kono, fresh from his narrow loss to Iyama in the Gosei title match, played positively in the opening, and Iyama admitted later that he had been a little dissatisfied with his position after the opening fight. To make up his lost ground, he launched an aggressive invasion of Kono’s moyo that brought the game back to even. Iyama then took the lead in the middle game when Kono made some moves that were not quite the best. In desperation, Kono set up a ko but did not have enough ko threats to win it, so he had to resign. This game shows how sharp Iyama’s perception is in the middle game: if the opponent slips up even a little, he will take advantage of it. The second game will be played on September 18 and 19.
Tomorrow: Members of the New Honinbo League; Korean Teen Wins Bingsheng Cup; Takao Becomes Tengen Challenger; Obituary: Hoshikawa Nobuaki 9P; Sasaski Promoted to 9P
September 14: Columbus, OH
2014 Chinese Moon Festival The 2nd OCS Cup Go Tournament
Dajiang He email@example.com
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Few charts deserve a page one feature article in The New York Times Arts and Leisure section, but pop sociologist Russell Lymes’ classic 1949 delineation of “highbrow,” “middlebrow” and “lowbrow” tastes has been “reproduced and imitated countless times,” the Times reports (see Go Spotting: The “High-Brow” Game and An Unlikely Place 6/19/2014 EJ). Russell suggest typical preferences for each group in various categories, such as clothing, reading, favorite causes — and games. To see how go placed, click here.
- Roy Laird
Syracuse go organizer Richard Moseson’s cousin Bill Flarsheim saw this go-themed mosaic at a temple in Zhuhai, China, where he’s living and working.
Those interested in studying go in Korea can now get a discount of $100 off per person when they come to study at Blackie’s International Baduk Academy (BIBA). Shawn Ray, a student at BIBA who recently moved to Korea to do a series of lessons on BadukTV, has arranged with the BIBA instructors for this special deal. “BIBA is a school dedicated to giving international go – or baduk, as it’s known here in Korea — players a place to play and study in a dojo-like setting,” Ray tells the EJ. “Right next door to BIBA is a class of Younguseng (insei, or students) who are around 7-9-dan amateur level and BIBA students get to play league games with them. After playing League games, we get our games reviewed by Mr. Kim 9P, or Blackie as we call him, and get an in-depth analysis of our games.” In order to get this discount individuals must come as a group, so those interested should contact Ray at clossius.ShawnRay@gmail.com before coming “to see if we can coordinate students to come around the same time to be eligible for a group discount. Looking forward to seeing everyone in Korea!”
Correcting the Games Database: “I checked out the AGA game database from a recent E-Journal (AGA Game Database Test Version Online 8/12 EJ) and really liked it!” wrote Shawn Ligocki. “But I noticed that a tournament I participated in seems to be double counted. I went 4-0, so maybe I shouldn’t complain.” We got a number of emails like this, pointing out various errors in the database. Thanks for flagging these; the programmers are working to update and correct the American Go Association Game Database (AGAGD). Comments and corrections should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org
Looking for Japan Go Tips: “I will be traveling to Japan next spring,” writes Ben Bernstein. “Do you have any advice, or can you point me to a source of information (about where to play go)?” He’s specifically interested in Tokyo, Nagoya and Kyoto; email your tips to email@example.com
A video podcast about esports that recently discussed randomness mentions go. “Randomness in Esports – How Chance Affects Competitive Play” discusses (at 1:03) how the selection of the first player in go has long been debated as a huge competitive advantage. “Just a passing reference, but definitely nice to see,” says Brad Edwards of the Wauconda Go Club, who passed this along.
Update: The Extra Credits team just did a follow-up to last week’s episode, First Move Advantage – How to Balance Turn-Based Games, “and mention go much more often in this week’s episode, commenting on how game designers should deal with first-turn advantage,” reports Edwards. “They also categorize chess as a ‘static resource game’ while go is a ‘developed resource game’. It’s just a short, but worthy of another look.”
Germany: Soeren Ohlenbusch 3d bested Bernd Lewerenz 3d at the Schweriner Turnier on August 31 while Christopher Lieberum 3d was third. Romania: Alexandru-Petre Pitrop 3d (left) took the 5th Radu Baciu Grand Prix in Vatra Dornei on August 24. Cristian Cobeli 1d came in second and Adrian Nedan 1k placed third. Sweden: The Stockholm Open finished on August 23 with John Karlsson 4d in first, Mingyu Chen 5d in second, and Charlie Aakerblom 4d in third.
– Annalia Linnan, based on reports from EuroGoTV, which include complete result tables and all the latest European go news; photo courtesy of EuroGoTV
Guo Juan’s Online Go School Fall semester group class starts up on September 27th. “If you want to study go with experienced pro teachers for a good price, we have a fun place for you” Guo Juan promises. “Make friends, meet pros and improve your play.” Teaching pros include Mingjiu Jiang 7P and Jennie Shen 2P. Register here.
A new tournament for California students, the West America Student Go Championship, is being organized by Clement Wong of the Riverside Go Club, and Yunxuan Li of the Diamond Bar High School Go Club. The tournament will be held on September 27, from 11 AM to 8 PM at the University of California, Riverside. “We sincerely hope students of all age can come and compete with each other and develop a friendly bond,” says Li “There will be many great prizes, such as trophies for winners, and other awards, and pizza for lunch, at a small fee, along with other refreshments. We really hope this will be a competitive and fun event for young people to enjoy”. The registration form is here, and there is no fee to participate. Direct any questions to Yunxuan Li at YunxuanL@Live.cn.
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Lee Sedol 9p (left) secured a solid lead against Gu Li 9p after winning Game 7 in their ten-game match on August 31 in Tibet’s capital Lhasa, widening his lead to 5-2 and putting him just one game away from winning outright. Gu’s back is against the wall now and must win the next three games just to draw the jubango. As has happened in most games throughout the match, Gu was ahead in the opening and established what seemed like a sure win. At 130, though, Lee (playing black) cut off Gu’s center group and killed white’s dragon on the right side (see below for game). Gu could not recover and now faces a kadoban, or potentially match-deciding game, next month (September 28) in his hometown of Chongqing. For more information on Game 7 or other games in the MLily Gu vs Lee Jubango including photos and game analysis by An Younggil 8p, please visit Go Game Guru.
–Annalia Linnan, based on a longer article by Go Game Guru; photo and game record courtesy of Go Game Guru
Players Wanted in Gainesville, FL: email firstname.lastname@example.org
Players from China, Korea, Japan, Taiwan, and the U.S. gathered in Qingdao, China on August 26-28 for the group stage of the 19th Samsung Cup. However, the stand-out competitor was Chinese player Rui Naiwei 9p (left), the only female player make it through to the next, or knockout, stage. Rui is one of only two women to ever make it to the knockout phase of the Samsung; she’s not only done so seven times, but made it to the quarter finals in the 5th and 6th Samsung Cups. This year, she is already off to a good start with two wins against Taiwan’s Xiao Zhenghao 8p (left). Rui will join Park Junghwan 9p, Lee Sedol 9p, and the 13 other knockout finalists in Daejeon, Korea on October 14-16 to compete for this year’s quarter finals. For more information on this year’s Samsung Cup including photos, game records, and pairings for the next round, visit Go Game Guru.
–Annalia Linnan, based on a longer article by Go Game Guru; photos courtesy Go Game Guru
The Bay Area Go Players Association and the San Francisco Go Club got a jump on Learn Go Week at the August 22-24 Japan Expo, which attracted thousands of fans of Japanese culture to San Mateo, California. The BAGPA and SFGC were on hand to teach the constant stream of attendees who wanted to learn to play go.
report/photo by Steve Burrall; photo: (front to back on the right): Matthew Burrall, BAGPA president Jay Chan and SF Go Club VP Eric Branlun, all teaching beginners.