President Allan Abramson called today for go players at all levels to play in the Tygem online pro qualifier, which begins the first weekend in June. Abramson said he was “encouraging everyone to participate in this history-making event, and tell your friends that you competed to become a pro!”
All those interested should sign up to play on the Tygem server (see below). “Practice with the Tygem server now will make your online competition easier,” he said. “Note that it is Windows-based only, so you may need to arrange to use a friend’s PC.” (5/11 Update: Tygem runs on the iPad, but will not run on a Macintosh computer. iPad users can download the app from the Mac App Store.) Interested players 7 dan and up should register online, and send Abramson a note stating your interest in competing, your AGA ID and statement of US/Canadian citizenship (President@usgo.org). For everyone else, “just play and enjoy this historic event.”
The first round of the three-round competition is a simple single elimination tournament open to all eligible AGA members, regardless of rank. Eligible players are US and Canadian citizens who are not already professionals. Anyone who signs up on TYGEMGO and competes in the tournament will receive an “I Went Out For Pro” enamel pin as a keepsake. Players who are not yet AGA members can join the AGA through TYGEMGO for a promotional $15 rate.
Players who get their TYGEMGO ranking of 6d or higher can skip Round 1 and start in Round 2 with the survivors of Round 1. Those who make it through Round 2 will join seven pre-seeded players for Round 3. The tournament will select seven finalists to compete from 7/28 to 8/4 in North Carolina, where sixteen players will compete for two pro certifications. The finalists in North Carolina will each receive a $500 subsidy and another $3,000 in prize money will be distributed.
In order to play, go to Tygem’s English-language website and sign up for a TYGEMGO account. Then go to to the registration page and hit the “register” button. Registration runs through May 27. The first round will start the first week-end in June. Contact Yixian Zhou at email@example.com or Andrew Okun at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have questions.