UK Return to Top After Finland Victory
The fifth round of the B-League on 23rd January saw the UK playing Finland. Yet again our team did extremely well, winning the match 4-0. As top placed team Netherlands lost to Germany 3-1, the UK team returned to the top spot, on boards-won tie break from Germany (18-16); Netherlands dropped to third.
Bruno Poltronieri wrote about his game against Javier-Aleksi Savolainen: I won by resignation. Not much happened until I decided to start poking at his floating group in the top right which seemed a bit over extended. I started with a peep, which he didn't really answer, so I was able to cut off a chunk of the group and kill it. In exchange he got a ponnuki in the centre, but since I had strong centre stones nearby it wasn't really worth much. After that I had a big lead. There was as usual a bit of byo yomi panic, when he tried to attack my left side group, but nothing serious.
Chris Bryant wrote about his game against Vesa Laatikainen: I won by 17.5 points in a peaceful game, very little fighting, and few stones dying for either of us. I played an early 3-3 invasion, and the move he used to defend (O14) to finish the joseki left a ton of aji behind; I think white is already ahead at this point. I figured maybe he had misclicked and meant to play P14 or something else instead, but he didn't say anything. I had two weakish groups on the left side, but he allowed me to connect them around his own weak group, which had to live with just two points. Later on, I played a stupid atari (T6) too early when I should've just pushed at Q9, but thankfully he replied to it, and then later on in endgame he tried some nonsense in my middle territory, had a mini heart attack, but none of it worked in the end.
Des Cann wrote about his game against Mikko Lappeteläinen: I won by resignation. I had a good result at the bottom where I got to play the mid-point in sente against the right corner allowing me to play double atari against the left corner. However I let him sacrifice in sente allowing to handle his weak corner group. He overplayed but I foolishly attacked immediately, got a ponnuki in a not very useful place and allowed my group to be walled in losing sente. He formed a moyo in the top left, but I ultimately reduced this successfully and decisively. He had left too much aji in his keenness to attack on the right. I had an alarm when he attacked my weakest group and I offered him ko but he kindly declined and let it live before resigning.
Jamie Taylor wrote about his game against Jari Koivikko: I managed to win by resignation. I played a lot of dodgy moves in the early game but my opponent made a few serious mistakes and I got a good lead going. I nearly managed to lose it all when I realised one of my groups was in danger about three moves late, but his groups all around were too weak for him to be able to do anything. I managed to kill something in the end game, after he ignored a move he shouldn't have, but I was way ahead anyway.