LEE CHANGHO OVERCOMES ODDS TO CLINCH NONGSHIM CUP: Lee Changho 9P, the last player on the Korean team, overcame a rough flight and three top opponents to win the Nongshim Cup title on March 12. “Lee Changho’s condition is not good” said one ominous news report early last week after Lee – who does not like air travel — arrived in Shanghai for the third and final stage of the 11th Nongshim Cup suffering from migraine headaches after his flight had experienced severe turbulence. China’s Liu Xing 7P eliminated Japan in the first round on Tuesday, defeating Hane Naoki 9P, but then lost by resignation to Lee on Wednesday. That still left China with a 2-1 advantage, however, with Chang Hao 9P and Gu Li 9P between Lee and the title. In an exciting game, with ko fights all over the board, Lee defeated Gu Li by resignation in the third round on Thursday and clinched the title on Friday with his win over Chang Hao by resignation in the final round of the Nongshim Cup.
- based on reports on JustPlayGo which also has the game records
XIE YIMIN RETAINS TITLE AS FEMALE MEIJIN: Xie Yimin defeated Mukai Chiaki 4P last Wednesday to retain her Female Meijin title. Xie won the second round by 2.5 points to sweep the 22nd Female Meijin 2-0. With all three of Japan’s female professional titles – Meijin, Kisei, Honinbo – and the Daiwa Ladies Cup firmly in her possession, Xie is clearly the top female professional in Japan.
LIAN XIAO WINS RICOH CUP: Lian Xiao 3P defeated Li Haojie 3P by resignation in the final game of the 4th Ricoh Cup (Xinxiu) last Wednesday. Lian Xiao is a 15-year-old Chinese professional player who was promoted to 1 dan in 2007 and 3 dan in 2009. Xinxiu means “new talent” and this Chinese tournament for youth players is currently sponsored by Ricoh. From 1998 through 2001, a tournament under the same name was sponsored by NEC. Prizes are 30,000 Yuan [ca. 4,400 USD] for the winner and 10,000 for the runner-up.
- – JustPlayGo & Sensei’s Library
CHOI WINS FIRST ROUND IN MAXIM: Defending champion Choi Cheolhan 9P defeated Kang Dongyun 9P by resignation on March 15 in the first round of the 11th Maxim Cup. This is Kang Dongyun’s first Maxim Cup title match. The Maxim is a 9P-only Korean tournament sponsored by Dong Suh Foods. The second round will be played on April 5th.
RUI 1-0 IN FEMALE KUKSU: Rui Naiwei 9P defeated Cho Hyeyeon 8P by resignation in the first round of the 15th Female Kuksu (National Champion) on March 15. Rui has played in the Kuksu finals eight times, including this year’s match. Her only Kuksu title loss was to Cho Hyeyeon in 2003 at the 9th Kuksu. The second game will be played on March 24th.