World Go News from The American Go Association




MEMBER'S EDITION BONUS CONTENT: MEMBER’S EDITION BONUS CONTENT: Our lead game today is a game between an established and famous player with many titles to his name and the leading representative of a new and eager generation. “I thought I had a good idea of what the result was going to be,” says commentator Rob van Zeijst. “What do you think?” Two bonus files today: the June 26 GG Auction Cup game between Choi Kyubyeong 9P and Park Jieun 9P, and the latest “easy” endgame problem from Yilun Yang 7P. Non-members: join the American Go Association and get all this great content with every EJ! It's all just a click away!

Volume 9, #33: July 7, 2008

DEADLINE LOOMS FOR N.A. ING QUALIFIER: There’s still time to qualify for this year’s expanded North American ING Masters tournament. Thirty-two top players will compete for more than $5,000 in the 5-round event at the 2008 U.S. Go Congress in Portland, OR. “Registration is still open for Internet ING qualifiers that will be held later this month,” reports TD Akane Negishi. Interested players must sign up by July 12; email her at for full details.

CONGRESS FILLING UP FAST: If you’re planning to attend this year’s U.S. Go Congress – and who wants to miss 8 great days of non-stop go? – time is of the essence, say organizers. While all the dorm rooms area are already booked – turnout is approaching 500 -- there are still rooms at the University Place Hotel and Co-Director Peter Freedman recommends reserving a room there while they work on getting some more dorm rooms. Email the Congress registrar at for details. Meanwhile, the Korean Baduk Association has confirmed that Seung-Chul Park 6P will attend in the place of Ms.Lee 3P, joining a stellar lineup of pros providing lectures, simultaneous games, game analysis and commentary and private lessons at the Congress, headed up by Takemiya Masaki 9P; click here for the complete roster. Congress attendees who want to guarantee their spot on one of the Day Off activities – which include tours of the Columbia River Gorge, the Oregon Coast, area wineries and local Chinese and Japanese gardens -- should email “After July 18, we may cancel tours for which not enough people have registered,” warns Freedman. Last but not least for fitness aficionados, Congress organizers report that attendees will have campus gym access for a small $7 daily fee. 

E-JOURNAL TEAM SLOTS OPEN: There are several slots open for game
recorders/broadcasters on the E-Journal Go Congress team. Recording top board games is a tremendous learning opportunity and a chance to witness and study the play of the top amateur and professional players in a top-level tournament environment, while bringing important games to hundreds of online viewers around the world. Single-digit kyu players and stronger preferred, and experience recording games or broadcasting games on KGS is helpful, but we can make exceptions on a case-by-case basis. For details on joining the EJ team, email Todd Heidenreich at photo: John Pinkerton recording at the '07 Go Congress; photo by Chris Garlock

ANDREW HUANG’S RISING YOUNG STAR: Andrew Huang (r), an 11-year-old rising star from Canada currently living in New Jersey, will make his debut at the Redmond Cup Junior Division finals at this year’s U.S. Go Congress. Huang tells the E-Journal that he started learning go at the Feng Yun Go School in 2004. Hoping to win a major tournament or a national title, he plays regularly on KGS and participates in many tournaments, making go part of his daily life. Huang recently participated in Canada’s World Mind Sports Games Qualifier, the youngest player to do so. Even though he did not make the team, he says he gained lots of experience and will be ready to face his biggest challenge yet when he plays in the Redmond Cup finals. In other Redmond Cup news, Calvin Sun and Hugh Zhang, rivals and stars of the Junior Division, will not be playing each other in the Redmond Cup finals. In their last two games, Zhang had been defeated twice by a total of only two points and though revenge is definitely on his mind, it will have to wait for another time, as Sun will stay in China over the summer and cannot compete in this year’s Redmond Cup.
- reported by Lawrence Ku, EJ West Coast Reporter

1ST TRANS-ATLANTIC GO TEAM CONTEST SET: The first-ever Trans-Atlantic Go (TAG) Team contest will be held at the upcoming Isle of Man Tournament The British Go Association (BGA) event runs August 17-22. “The plan is to have a 4-player AGA team of different rating levels play four rounds against four different British players of the same or very similar rating,” says American Go Association President Michael Lash, who announced the new event with BGA President Ron Bell. “The BGA has adopted AGA playing rules so this makes it even easier on us!” adds Lash. “We are seeking four players in these ranges: 4-6d, 1-3d, 2-4 kyu and 5-7 kyu level.” While players must cover their own transportation expense to the Isle of Man, Lash reports that “The BGA has very generously offered the team a fabulous incentive package of free entry to the whole Isle of Man event, including their main tournament, free Friday evening buffet, free passes on the local trains and trams, and passes to enter Manx National Heritage sites.” Interested amateur players should submit names and confirmed ratings to no later than July 15th. If there are more interested players than available seats, the AGA will select players based on AGA ratings history. Requirements are full AGA membership for a year prior to the event and US citizenship or permanent residency. The plan is for the TAG Team event location to alternate between the US and UK, Lash and Bell note, with the AGA planning to invite a BGA team to the 2009 U.S. Go Congress. Photo: Port Erin Beach on the Isle of Man

AGA TO ESTABLISH STANDARDS FOR NEW TOURNAMENT PAIRING PROGRAMS: In an ongoing effort to standardize pairing protocols, two draft documents have been posted online for public comment and suggestion, reports Chris Kirschner. "McMahon Pairing Rules Protocols" deals with the procedures of setting up the tournament and pairing the players for each round, while "McMahon Pairing Program Interface Standards" deals with the user interface and features necessary for a TD to run a tournament efficiently and report the results for rating. “Both documents present a number of ideas that have been kicking around for a few years, but are not used consistently,” says Kirschner. An initial comment period runs through July 15, after which a new draft will be prepared for circulation at the U.S. Go Congress “where we expect some spirited discussion about the proposals." After the McMahon standards are established, Kirschner says, “the plan is to go on with standards for handicap and other types of tournaments.”

BADUK CONFERENCE RESCHEDULED: The 5th International Conference on Baduk (ICOB) has been rescheduled to November 7-10 in Korea. The conference – which runs concurrently with the 3rd Prime Minister Cup International Baduk Tournament – had originally been scheduled for October 17-20. Conference organizers are looking for papers on the history and/or marketing of baduk (go); the deadline for submission is the end of July. “Scholars whose works are chosen will be invited for the conference and accommodation and meals will be provided at no cost,” says Seyoung Kim. Papers selected for the conference will be published in the proceedings of the 5th ICOB and authors receive a $500 honorarium. For details email

E-JOURNAL SPAMMED: The E-Journal was hit with a spam attack Thursday morning, July 3. Part of our list was sent a spam email that – if clicked – sent them to “a premium mobile subscription service” purportedly based in Canada, although our research indicates that the spam originated from a Russian address. E-Journal staff acted immediately Thursday morning, changing passwords, blocking another spam that was in the process of being sent out, and advising our readers that the spam was unauthorized by the AGA, apologizing for any inconvenience and emphasizing that the AGA never rents, sells or makes available our E-Journal list to any commercial interests. We monitored the situation over the holiday weekend to make sure there would be no more spam attacks, and while our system already employs very high list security – this is the first successful attack in the 8-year history of the EJ – we’re also working on reviewing security measures to prevent such attacks in the future. Again, we deeply apologize for any inconvenience or annoyance: we highly value our nearly 13,000 worldwide readers of the E-Journal and know that you rely on us to provide you with the most thorough go news every week. We’re providing the Member’s Edition game attachments to all our readers today as a token of our appreciation of your interest and support.
- Chris Garlock, E-Journal Managing Editor

GO CALENDAR: New York City
July 12: New York, NY: NYGC Big Tournament-Special 8 Round Blitz
Boris Bernadsky 646.438.1338
photo: At the June NYGC tourney; photo by Carrie Lapidus

HANE STAYS ALIVE IN HONINBO: Hane Naoki 9P (l) continues his uphill battle to win the 63rd Honinbo title match, winning Game 5 to make the score 3-2 with two rounds to go. Takao Shinji 9P got off to a good start against challenger Hane Naoki 9P by winning the first three games of the best-of-seven-game match. With his back to the wall, Hane won the fourth game and has now won the fifth. The odds are still against him since he must also win the remaining two to prevail, but it has happened before. Takao, who also holds the Judan title as well as the Daiwa Cup, hopes to make this the fourth consecutive year he has held this title since taking it from Cho U 9P in 2005. Hane was Kisei in 2004 and 2005, and has held several other titles, but never the Honinbo.

GU LI AND LEE CHANGHO TO MEET IN FUJITSU CUP FINALS: Gu Li 9P (r) of China has defeated his countryman Chang Hao 9P to move to the finals of the 21st international Fujitsu Cup where he will face Lee Changho 9P of Korea, who eliminated Liu Xing 7P of China. Click here for records of the semifinal games. Koreans have won this prestigious event the last ten years in a row. A Chinese representative has only won it once, Ma Xiaochun 9P in 1995. Lee Changho has won it twice, in 1996 and 1998, and was the runner-up last year, losing to fellow Korean Park Yuonghoon 9P. Gu Li has never reached the finals before. The final is a single game, scheduled for Monday July 7th in Tokyo. Chang and Liu will play for third place at the same time.

PARK JIEUN IMPROVES ODDS IN GG AUCTION CUP: Now it’s just three against one. Park Jieun 9P (l), the last woman player in the GG Auction Cup, has just three opponents left in the win-and-continue match between a dozen women professionals and a dozen senior male pros. The men got off to a good start this time when Jimmy (Minsoo) Cha 4P defeated five of the women before losing to Lee Minjin 5P. Lee knocked out four of the seniors, but Kim Jongsoo 6P eliminated four more women, leaving only three women to eight men. Cho Hyeyeon 7P and Rui Naiwei 9P were able to defeat only one senior each, which left Park Jieun, the final member of the women's team, with the challenge of defeating six men if the women were to repeat last year's victory. So far she has managed to knock out three of the six, leaving only Yang Jaeho 9P, Kim Ilwhan 9P, and the most accomplished of the seniors, Cho Hunhyun 9P. The next game is scheduled for July 9th.

STRONG KOREAN LINE-UP FOR WMSG: More details of the Korean World Mind Sports Games team (Korea To Field All-Star Team At WMSG, 6/23 EJ) are now available. The players for the Men’s Team Tournament are Lee Sedol 9P (r), Cho Hansung 9P, Won Sungjin 9P, Park Jungsang 9P, Han Sanghun 3P – the first 1P to qualify for a final in an international tournament-- and Lee Jungu 7P. Playing in the Men’s Individual Tournament: Park Younghun 9P, Mok Jinsuk 9P – who has the most games and wins in 2007 -- Choi Cheolhan 9P, Kang Dongyun 8P and Paek Hongsuk 6d. The Women’s team tournament line-up includes Kim Hyemin 5P - a baduk student at Myongji university -- Park Jiyun 1P and Kwon Hyojin 5P. Park Jiun 9P, Lee Minjin 5P and Lee Seula 1P will participate in the Women’s Individual Tournament. On June 21st a qualification tournament for amateurs was held to complete the Korean team. The four amateur players who can represent Korea are Ham Yungu 7d, Hong Seokui 6d – who won the 2007 European Go Congress Championship -- Lee Yonghee 6d and Kim Shinyung, currently the strongest player in the women’s insei group. There will be three Korean pairs for the WMSG Pair Tournament: Hong Sungji 6P – Kim Eunsun 3P, Ohn Sojin 4P – Lee Hajin 3P and Hong Seokui 6d - Kim Shinyung. Ham Yungu 7d and Lee Yonghee 6d will play in the Open Individual Tournament.
- reported by Jens Henker, Korean news correspondent for the E-Journal

GO QUIZ: Sakata In Seattle
The 2nd U.S. Go Congress in Seattle was perhaps the greatest pro value per player in the 24-year history of the event. With just 120 players in attendance, my recollection is that we had more than 12 pros. Not only Sakata Eio (l) – the answer to last week’s Quiz -- but Michael Redmond, attending his first Congress, along with his teacher Oeda 8P. I believe title league veteran Ishi Kunio 9P was there as well and it was Yilun Yang’s first visit. While 17 of 25 of you - many no doubt remembering the event fondly – chose Sakata, 6 chose Kato Masao, 2 chose Kobayashi Koichi, and no one chose Cho Chikun, none of whom have been to a Congress. The only player close to Sakata's stature in the Japanese go world to have attended was Rin Kaiho, who came to the first Congress. China has often sent some of their top 9 dans, and the great Cho Hun-hyeon 9 dan of Korea stopped by a Congress – I can’t remember which one -- for a day. Congrats to oldtimer Joel Sanet, this week's winner, chosen at random from those answering correctly.
THIS WEEK’S QUIZ: No one chose Cho this week, and that’s ok, it was a wrong answer, but just so he will not feel neglected, Cho’s the inspiration for this week’s Quiz. Cho Chikun is the only player who’s won all 7 of Japan's big seven titles -- Kisei, Meijin, Honinbo, Judan, Tengen, Oza and Gosei – and has won each at least twice. How many players have come up painfully short, winning 6 out of 7? Your quizmaster can name three, but I will give credit for folks who can give me two of the names, and bonus points if you come up with one that I missed. Click here to send in your names.
- Keith Arnold, Quizmaster

by Paul Barchilon
Today I learned that there are good dumplings and bad dumplings. The bad ones are the kind you make on the go board, the good ones are the kind Jeff Chang’s mom makes. She brought over the ingredients this afternoon, and our hosts showed us how to make our own dumplings, which we then boiled and gobbled up in traditional style, with vinegar, salt, and chili sauce. We begin our days at the Experience Go in China program with go lectures from 10 am to noon, usually on fuseki patterns or game analysis, then a break for lunch, followed by games against assigned partners until 6 pm or later. Our teachers comment on the games after we play them. We have had two pros working with us, Pete Liu 2P and Jin Jing 2P (right), as well as two KGS nine dans, Jeff Chang and Tom Lee. Most of the people here are studying go six days a week, while several of us are on the five-day plan. Last week we visited the Forbidden City on our day off, and this week we went to the Summer Palace. Yesterday 15 of us tried our hands against the Qun Yi Go Club here in Beijing. We met in a traditional tea house (left) and played even games with our hosts. I played a 2 dan first, then a 5 dan, taking white in both games due to the luck of the draw. Given that I am only 2 kyu, I held out as long as I could, and resigned both games when it was clear I no longer stood a chance. Almost all of our opponents were dan level, but we did manage to win 8 games. My second opponent, Peter Zhao, handed me a business card identifying him as Director of National Children Go Teaching Project Council and Special Journalist of Go Newspaper. Holy smokes, I realized, this guy has the same jobs I do. His English was better than my virtually non-existent Chinese, so we managed to communicate a little. We both laughed when we shared our most common teaching experience – that we have taught many children to play go, but only some of them stick with it. Same story here in China I guess, they just have a lot more people, and a lot more of them keep playing. Also playing with the club was the new amateur champion of Beijing, a 13-year-old boy named Zheng Yu Hang. He soundly trounced Chang, and then proceeded to force even the 2P Liu to resign. Look out for this kid, he’s aiming for the pro league!
We had a surprise guest from Finland as well, 17 year old Javier Savolainen, 4d EGF. He is on his way to the World Youth Go Championships in Guiyang, in south China, which begins next week. He has been studying at The International Baduk Academy, in Korea, for the past month. He smiles when I ask if he got stronger, “Yeah, sure! I have a good chance of beating the other Europeans now.” Savolainen has been playing for three years, it took him two to get to 1 dan, he believes he has reached 6 dan in the past month. He is probably the strongest player in Finland now, where there are three five dans and a couple of 4 dans. Savolainen will face stiff competition from Europe at the WYGC, including Artem Kachanovskyj 4d, a 15-year-old from the Ukraine; 15-year-old Thomas Debarre of France, and Nikola Mitic 4d pf Serbia. Savolainen says he is pretty sure the Chinese and Korean representatives will be unbeatable, but he is aiming for third place. U.S. favorites Calvin Sun and Will Zhou, both 7d, will also be competing – so don’t rule America out just yet!
E-J Youth Editor Barchilon is studying go for a month in China. Updates on his adventures can be found online

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Published by the American Go Association
Managing Editor: Chris Garlock
Assistant Editor: Bill Cobb
Professionals: Yilun Yang 7P; Alexandr Dinerchtein 3P; Fan Hui 2P
Contributors: Paul Barchilon (Youth Editor); Lawrence Ku (U.S. West Coast Reporter); Brian Allen (U.S. West Coast Photo Editor); Peter Dijkema (Dutch/European Correspondent); Marilena Bara (Romania/European Correspondent); Ian Davis (Ireland Correspondent); Jens Henker (Korea Correspondent)
Columnists: James Kerwin 1P; Kazunari Furuyama; Rob van Zeijst; Roy Laird; Peter Shotwell
Translations: Chris Donner (Japan); Bob McGuigan (Japan); Matt Luce (China)

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Articles appearing in the E-Journal represent the opinions of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official views of the American Go Association.

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