The UK Junior team is currently lying in 9th place of the 12 teams in the European Youth Go Online Team Championship with two rounds to go. The UK will be playing the combined team of Croatia, Serbia and Slovenia in round 3 which is scheduled for Saturday 12 December. This is likely to be a close match with our strength in depth on the U12 boards countered by their U20 strength so the two U16 boards are likely to be critical.
The Bexfield family managed to have the winner in each of the two sections at the South London Tournament. Alison (1d) won the four-player teachers' section and Charlotte (10k) won the 16-player handicap section. Both wins were awarded by the lowest grade tie-break, Alison from Alex Rix and Tim Hunt, and Charlotte from Paolo Capriotti (5k Nottingham). The lowest graded players on two wins, who also won prizes, were David Siegwart, Ben Murphy, Francesco Chiarini, and Ryan Nguyen.
In the morning before the tournament the 16 students were taught by four teachers - Nick Krempel, Alex Rix, Tim Hunt and Alison Bexfield. Nick was replaced by the strongest student, Bruce Tinton, for the tournament.
The 2015 British Youth Go Championships (BYGC) featured 34 competitors, aged from 6 to 17 (including two foreign players currently resident in the UK), with strengths from 2 dan to 35 kyu.
King Edward VI (Aston) School, Birmingham, was again the venue, thanks to Andrew Russell.
All games were played on full-sized (19 by 19) boards.
To determine the overall winner, Oscar Selby had to play and beat Alex Terry in a rapid play-off game.
Youth Champion: Oscar Selby (Alex Terry)
U18: Alex Benton (Kapriel Chiarini)
U16: Alex Terry (Hasan Nisar)
U14: Oscar Selby (Jack Nolan)
U12: Edmund Smith (Aidan Wong)
U10: Alexander Hsieh
U8: Jianzhou Mei (Andreas Ghica)
An interesting article from <re/code> by Mark Bergen:
"When the world’s smartest researchers train computers to become smarter, they like to use games. Go, the two-player board game born in China more than two millennia ago, remains the nut that machines still can’t crack.
Enter Google’s nerds. Demis Hassabis, the artificial intelligence savant behind Google DeepMind, hinted in a video interview that his secretive team has cracked Go."
The UK Youth Go team played Poland in the first round of the four round European Youth Online Team Championship and won 3-2. Lawrence had a tough game on board 1 against a strong dan player on the U18 board. However our strength in the U16s paid off with both Oscar and Alex winning their U16 boards. Both U12 boards were evenly matched in paper. Aidan had a close defeat but Alexander gained an easy win to clinch the match. The team will be playing Czechia next on 28 November.
The Autumn 2015 edition of the British Go Journal, number 173, is now available in the members' area as a PDF and should be soon arriving in the post with members (except for electronic only members).
The Three Peaks went very well at its current location of the Commodore in Grange-over-Sands, though it was a very wet and windy weekend. 32 players took part.
As organiser Bob Bagot is moving away from the town, next year will either have a new organiser or a new venue. Any volunteers contact Bob.
Jitka Bartova (2d Leamington) won the tournament with five wins out of five. Richard Hunter (2d Bristol) came second with four wins. Other prizes to Eggert Fruchtenicht (10k) for 5/5, Dave Horan (7k Chester) for 4/5 and Anthony Pitchford (10k Chester) for 3/4.
Roger Daniel gallantly declined the wine or chocolates offered to him for being the first to enter.
Ngoc-Trang Cao (3d), the strong French player from Leamington Club, won the 2015 Wessex. She beat Jim Clare, Sandy Taylor and Richard Hunter to take the title. The only other player of the 34 entrants to win all three games was Roella Smith (9k) from Cambridge Juniors.
As before the venue was St Mark's Community Centre in Bath and the day was very sunny with a chance to explore the city centre or watch the marathon runners at lunch time.
The twice-yearly London International Teams match was back after a break in the spring. This time it was held at the venue of the new West London Go Club, the Young Chelsea Bridge Club, near to Goldhawk Road underground station in Shepherd's Bush.
North London Go Club was run-away winner, their A-team only dropping one game. This means they have now won the last three such team tournaments. Cambridge was second by virtue of their team captain having more wins than that of the North London B-team, whilst a fierce battle for last place was won by Nippon.
Reading Go Club player Alexei Likhtman, 44, died yesterday whilst in the USA.
Alexei, a Physics professor at Reading University, was in Baltimore for a conference. On Sunday 11th October he was exploring the Appalachian Trail in Maryland and was taking photographs at a beauty spot called Annapolis Rock. It seems he was jumping from rock to rock with a camera and tripod when at about 10:45 he tripped and fell 50 feet. Despite the efforts of other hikers and paramedics he died at the scene.
Alexei had moved to the UK from Moscow and had been at Leeds University from 1999 to 2007, before moving to Reading. He was a keen member of Reading Go Club when not travelling and had played at Bracknell and Maidenhead Tournaments. He last played a tournament at 9k, though he was still improving quickly.