Should the North American Masters Tournament (NAMT) be used to select North American representatives to the SportAccord World Mind Games? The American Go Association is looking for comment by strong players (players with AGA rating 6.0 and up) on this proposal. With a total prize fund of $400,000, the SportAccord World Mind Games (SAWMG) is the most lucrative international event North American go players can compete in. The event sponsors, SportAccord and the Beijing City government, pay for travel and accommodation, plus generous prize money for all players. “If we use the NAMT as the selection tournament, we raise its profile as a prestigious event,” says AGA President Andy Okun. “And for an event as significant as the SAWMG, a face-to-face selection tournament would seem better.” The NAMT points selection and 16-player format — all citizen and permanent resident professionals invited with two seats reserved for Canadian amateur participants — would remain largely the same. However, since the SAWMG previously has invited both male and female players, the proposal includes a format change to the NAMT requiring that 2-4 seats in the tournament be filled by women eligible for SAWMG (citizens), chosen by traditional NAMT qualification procedures (professional or most points). The 2013 SAWMG invitations and format have not been finalized yet, but assuming that the AGA is invited to send at least one male and one female player again this year, the highest finishing eligible male and female players (citizens) in the 2013 NAMT would be the AGA representatives to SportAccord. Strong players (players with AGA rating 6.0 and up) are urged to click here by May 1 to weigh in on the proposal.
American Go E-Journal
Thursday April 18, 2013