With two events gone, Matthew Macfadyen shared the lead with Jaeup Kim on 3. Then the long tournaments started, with the Scottish Open players then leading the field. Durham evened things up a bit, followed by the Welsh and later Isle of Man. Belfast didn't count as it was not a BGA event, so then leader Yohei Negi didn't increase his lead. However all the other autumn events did count, which gave Tony Atkins the lead for a short while. After East Midlands:
1. Toby Manning 19 2. Matthew Cocke 18 3. Tony Atkins 16 4. Yohei Negi 15 5. David Ward 14 6. Gerry Mills 13 7. Alistair Wall 12.5 8. Matthew Macfadyen 12
The Youth Grand Prix started after the 2007 London Open. After the BYGC, which counts double points, 50 young players had played in a tournament. With a strong showing from Aston at Coventry and from Cambridge at the Bar-Low, it has become a contest between the two clubs. After the Pair Go, Roella Smith moved up to 5th with 308. As all the top players were at the UK Go Challenge only the order changed, but Ken and Jack scored points at Epsom. Those who played the summer events pulled ahead. There was a good Wessex for Jack and a good Three Peaks for Danielle. Danielle and Matthew were at the final event, the London Open. Final points were:
1. Danielle Ward 893 2. Matthew Hathrell 862 3. Jack Drury 756 4. Ken Dackombe 738 5. Huw Talliss 546 6. John Perkins 472 7. Stewart Smith 442 8. Roella Smith 438 9. Owen Walker 412
The hunt to find the British Champion 2008 has ended. Over the May Bank Holiday the Candidates' Tournament selected the eight players for the Challengers' League. This was in June and selected the two players for this year's best of five title match: Matthew Macfadyen and Hui Wang. The games were broadcast live on KGS from 10:00 on 10th August, 31st August, 13th September and 1st November (the 16th November was not needed). The first game was won by Hui Wang by resignation. The second game was won by Matthew by resignation, as was the third. Matthew also won the fourth to regain the title from Bei Ge.
With regret the BGA announces the sudden death of Brian Dackombe on Christmas Day 2008, whilst on family holiday to his mother on the Isle of Wight. Brian was often seen at tournaments, usually with his son Ken, and sometimes with daughter Kay or some of the boys from Greenwich College or St Olave's School were he was helping to run a Go Club. Our condolences go to his wife Mitsu and the family.
The long events are a good way to score points; Tim Hunt's second place at the 5-round Three Peaks saw him catching Matthew Cocke. Shaoyou's win at London gave him the lead, but Tim was not far behind and caught up at Maidenhead. Shaoyou's win at Cambridge put him ahead and, with just 6 points at the British remaining, this lead proved uncatchable. Final places:
1. Shaoyou Ouyang 23 2. Tim Hunt 21 3. Alistair Wall 18 4= Francis Roads 15 4= Phil Beck 15 6. Jaeup Kim 14 7= Matthew Cocke 13 7= Toby Manning 13
Guo Juan was the teacher at the 2008 London Open.
The BGA has recognised the new dan grades of:
7th November 2008: 1 dan Dave Buckley 20th July 2008: 5 dan Hui Wang 3 dan Nick Krempel 6th April 2008: 2 dan Nick Krempel 2 dan Phil Beck 1 dan Alex Bell
In Korea early in 2008, Diana Koszegi from Hungary has been made pro 1 dan. Alex Dinerchtein and Svetlana Shikshina have been promoted to pro 3 dan, also in Korea.
A question on "The Weakest Link" on 06/05/08: "What two letter word is the national board game of Japan and an instruction to proceed?" Answer: "Yahtze????"
In the BBC TV documentary "The Shogun" (BBC 2 29/03/08) about the rise of the first Shogun, Tokagawa Ieyasu, both Ieyasu and his son and top general were seen playing Go. Ieyasu mused his battle strategy over a game, while in a second scene the players were urged to finish more quickly as it was time for battle.
In "Diagnosis Murder" episode "Deadly Games", BBC1 07/03/08 and 21/12/06, Dick van Dyke as Doctor Mark Sloan plays Weiqi (Go) to get inside the mind of a potential assassin who also plays. Several scenes feature study and playing of the game, and there is some explanation of the rules and strategy.
On 09/01/08 on their 20:00 Radio 2 programme, Mark Radcliffe and Stuart Maconie mentioned Go. One of their listeners had said that Othello was based on Go. Mark said that he knew people that play Go and that Go is "quite a thing". Stuart asked whether Go was the game that if computers ever play it we are all in trouble. Stuart also asked whether it was very artistic and stated it is definitely "No Cluedo". On 07/03/08 Harry Fearnley was interviewed on Radio Oxford. Toby Manning was interviewed, live from Beijing, by Nicky Campbell on Radio 5 Live braeakfast show on 03/10/08, about Go in the WMSG.