One thing’s for sure about this weekend’s Gu-Lee game: one of them will take the lead in their historic 10-game jubango. With the score tied at 2-2 and their upcoming break in July, whoever wins this game will take the lead for at least two months until they play again. Lee won the first two games but Gu Li has been making a mighty comeback inside and outside the jubango arena. Including matches from other tournaments, Gu currently has a four-game winning streak against Lee, which according to Go Game Guru is “something that’s never happened before between these two players.” Baduk TV will provide live coverage and commentary and Go Game Guru’s An Younggil 8p will translate and discuss the game with Baduk TV Live viewers via chat. For more information including past games and when game five will be available in your time zone, please visit Go Game Guru.
— Annalia Linnan, based on a longer article by Go Game Guru; photo courtesy of Go Game Guru
In celebration of the 90th birthday of Nihon Kiin, a special summer go camp will be held in Tokyo August 26 through September 4. Included in the camp are daily pro instructions in separate dan and kyu sections, playing in the largest Japanese amateur tournament — the Takara Shuzou Cup, where the 1000+ participants will all receive special commemorative prizes — and visits to the Honinbo title ceremony, to Kamakura, site of the Go Seigen-Kitani jubango, and to Yugen no ma, the legendary tatami playing room adorned by a Kawabata calligraphy (right). The camp fee is between JPY 50 to 55K (about $500); housing starts at ~$40 a night. The camp is recommended for players 10 kyu and up, including high dans. For further information and registration forms, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
- photo by John Pinkerton
This Week’s Quiz: Who said this? “The rules of go are so elegant, organic and rigorously logical that if intelligent life forms exist elsewhere in the universe they almost certainly play go.” Was it Albert Einstein, John Nash or Edward Lasker? Click here to submit your answer. “I had read and been amused by this quote some time ago, then referenced it just a couple of weeks ago, in correspondence with my frequent go adversary, John Collins, who in retirement is doing an M.Sc. in Astrophysics,” writes Tony Collman, the EJ’s UK correspondent. “Annoyingly, although it was beautifully apposite in the context, I couldn’t at the time remember the exact words or who said them, but mere days later I was enquiring about a set of go quotes which had embellished bottles of Monkey Jump Ale, given by the sponsor as prizes for the Skye Tournament back in March. As luck would have it, the full quote was amongst them, together with the author’s name.”
Players are coming from as far away as Chicago and New York for this weekend’s 41st Maryland Open, which is also a NAMT Qualifier and Pro Qualifier. Click here for details and to register. There will be prizes in all sections and cash prizes in the open section. There will be five rounds; three Saturday and two Sunday. “Come for one day or both!” says organizer Keith Arnold. Registration on Saturday runs from 9 until 10:30 am, with the first round at 11 am; first round Sunday 9:30 am. “Our thanks to Yellow Mountain Imports” for sponsoring, Arnold adds.
Iyama Makes Good Start In Honinbo Title Defense: The difference in experience seemed to be a big factor in the opening game of the 69th Honinbo title match, which was held on May 14 and 15. Though still only 24 (until May 24), Iyama Yuta Honinbo (right) has already played in eleven best-of-sevens (and won seven of them). In contrast, Ida Atsushi 8P, at 20, was playing in his first title match and was the youngest player ever to challenge for the Honinbo title.
One advantage for Ida (left) is that this is the first time that Iyama has faced an opponent younger than himself in a title match, so he will now know how his seniors felt. The opening game was played in Ida’s home town of Suzuka in Mie Prefecture, so he also had the overwhelming support of the fans on the spot. The game was actually played in the Tsubaki Okami Yashiro, a Shinto shrine, in a building called the Sanshuden, which had just been renovated as a training center. This game was held to celebrate the upcoming official opening of the hall on May 18. The arrangements for an event like this are made many months in advance; Ida was a complete dark horse in the Honinbo league, so city officials had no way of knowing that a local player would be starring.
Ida drew white in the nigiri. The game started with his taking profit in three corners, letting Iyama build a moyo. Ida made an invasion on the right side and had to fight hard to settle his group. However, he then had to switch to another invasion at the top before he had made the side group completely alive. Iyama made a clever placement on the side that set up a double attack on the two groups and he was able to kill the one at the top. Ida was forced to resign after 197 moves.
The main impression from this game is of Iyama’s greater skill in fighting, but Ida seemed to improve round by round in the Honinbo league, so we can expect him to adapt rapidly to two-day games. His play with black in the second game, scheduled for May 25 and 26, will give an indication of how his challenge
Kisei B League Starts: The first two games were played in the 39th Kisei B League on May 15. Murakawa Daisuke 7P (W) scored an upset half-point win over Yoda Norimoto 9P and Kobayashi Satoru 9P (B) beat Cho Riyu 8P by resignation. The A League starts on the 22nd.