Team Draw Exciting Match Against Italy
It was an exciting match against Italy with some interesting games and the added excitement of Jon Diamond's game breaking just at the crucial point in a fight. In the end it ended honours even which left us third in the B-League just ahead of Finland, both on 7 points. At the top Netherlands beat Sweden to go a point clear of Italy with 10 points.
Daniel Hu wrote of his game against Matias Pankoke: I was first to finish this time, in less than 2 hours, a surprisingly relaxing game. My opponent tenukied in the upper left which may be slightly questionable. A standard joseki ensued on the lower side, where he should get 2nd line territory on both sides and I get thickness on the 4th line and half an eye on the lower side. I'm not sure my clamp was best, but it was fighting spirit when he refused to play the simple one space jump. He certainly misplayed it, trying to save everything. There were lots of empty triangle tesujis and attachment tesujis floating around, and my reading was that a massive ko might ensue where he took first but I could capture cutting stones in return. He proceeded to collapse on the lower side with such split shape, losing 3 cutting stones and not getting anything much in return. Then he followed with an overly aggressive cut in the upper right when all my groups were thick. I spent over 10 minutes on one move debating whether to only capture his 4-4 stick or try to capture the whole thing. There was still some ko aji in my upper right corner, but his 4-4 stick didn't have many liberties either. So I only tried to kill the 4-4 stick, allowing him a ponnuki on the upper side. However he wanted to save everything, so I killed his entire 4-4 group from upper side to right and he got a thin wall in the centre. He threatened to make 1 eye with the stick, I tenukied and he was still dead. He resigned.
Alex Kent wrote of his game: I won a very exciting game against Alessandro Pace by resignation. We had a modern style fuseki followed by a complicated (and probably not joseki) sequence in the lower-left corner. I deemed the result playable and the game developed into one where we each had very clear spheres of influence. I went on to create a group I considered safe inside my opponent's area only to be attacked quite strongly. This turned into an interesting situation where there were two linked kos. My opponent went wrong here and ignored a massive ko threat, and the resulting trade was very favourable for me. We then almost immediately went into the second large ko of the game as I could now attack another group. This one I allowed to live in exchange for consolidating a large area in the lower-right. Feeling very confident of victory I slackened off a bit, and then failed at counting and thought it might be getting close. Cue huge ko number 3: but this one I had plenty of threats for and winning this sealed the game.
Jon Diamond wrote of his game against Carlo Metta: Trying to be calm again - creating a central moyo and then let him live too easily! Sad… But oh, he doesn’t take his opportunity to either escape or capture some of the surrounding stones!! I’ve got another chance. He then lost his connection and my client froze, still counting down the time.
We then managed to replay the game up to where it broke and continued the fight to kill his big centre group. Unfortunately some of my stones got cut off and I was behind in the race to capture.
Des Cann wrote about his game against David Bernadis: I lost a less exciting game. Played a modern joseki in the top left with ko options. The rest of the board I found myself with more territory, but somewhat short of thickness and I feared he would form a huge moyo and keep too much of it. So I played some slow reducing moves. Meanwhile he played three moves in the original corner capturing seven stones which must have been good for me. I felt the game was close then and thought I might be ahead, but it was very difficult to judge. The rest of the long game was all yose and I ended up with a deficit of 4.5 without really being sure where I went wrong.