American Go E-Journal » Europe

EuroGoTV Update: Romania, Hungary, Austria

Monday October 7, 2013

romanian cup preliminariesRomania: Larisa Popescu 2k (left) won the Romanian Cup preliminaries 1/4 CSRB hosted in Bucuresti on September 29. Behind her were Rares Ghioc 2k and Iulian Lungu 2k. Hungary: Also on September 29, the European Hans Pietsch Memorial Finals finished in Budapest with Antti Tormanen 6d in first, Pal Balogh 6d in second, and Catalin Taranu 7d in third. Austria: Though he took fifth in the European Hans Pietsch Memorial, Pavol Lisy 6d conquered the Seewinkel Go Tournament on September 22 in Apetion. Viktor Lin 6d placed second and Lukas Podpera 6d came in third.
- Annalia Linnan, based on reports from EuroGoTV, which include complete result tables and all the latest European go news

 

Categories: Europe
Share

EuroGoTV Update: Russia, Romania, Poland

Monday September 30, 2013

russian championship semifinal

Russia: The Russian Championship semifinal finished on September 22 in Saint Petersburg with Timur Sankin 6d (left) in first, Andrej Cheburakhov 5d in second, and Igor Nemlij 5d in third. Romania: Alin Badea 1d bested Sorin Sora 4d in the 4th Radu Baciu Grand Prix – stage 8 tournament in Craiova on September 15. Adrian Nedan 2k placed third. Poland: Also on September 22, Marcin Majka 3d won the Polish Championship Qualification in Lodz. In second was Sebastian Pawlaczyk 3d and Majus Misiak 2d came in third.
- Annalia Linnan, based on reports from EuroGoTV, which include complete result tables and all the latest European go news

 

4th Euro Online Team Championship Under Way

Friday September 27, 2013

The fourth season of the online European Team Championship kicked off on September 17 with the first round in League C, followed by the first A-League round on September 24. This year 32 national teams — a record number – will compete, with Greece and Iceland entering for the first time in League C, which now comprises 12 teams.
The British team hit the ground running on the 17th, with a 4-0 win over newcomers Greece, giving impetus to hopes of reversing last season’s demotion from the B-league (see EJ of 6/6). Click here to see British Go Association report, with game records. However, Switzerland (against Iceland) and Turkey (against Kazakhstan) also won all four games.
Looking forward to the new season, European Go Federation President Martin Stiassny, predicted “a brilliant competition” in League A, with France new possible favorites for the championship as they field a very strong team comprising 2013 European Champion Fan Hui 8d on board one and Thomas Debarre 6d and Remi Campagnie  5d (currently studying go in Beijing) on boards two and three. This makes them now as strong as both Czechia, last year’s winners and Russia, who won the first two championships. Stiassny also marked out Romania, with Catalin Taranu  5p now on board one, as likely be stronger than last season, though in fact in Round One they lost 3-1 to the French.  Ukraine, who beat Sweden 3-1 in the first round, will also be one to watch according to Stiassny.
The Championship is sponsored by Pandanet and played with the new client GoPanda2 on IGS/Pandanet on Tuesdays, normally starting at 8p (time-zone UTC+1) in the EuropeanTeamChamp  room. Click here for full results.

- Report by Tony Collman, British correspondent for the EJ. Graphic courtesy Pandanet home page.

BGA Promotes Go at Mindsports International Fest in Cardiff

Monday September 23, 2013

The British Go Association  (BGA) promoted go at the UK’s first Mindsports International (MSI) Festival  at Cardiff’s Millennium Stadium the weekend of September 14-15. MSI says the event attracted about 500 enthusiasts of Scrabble, chess and the card-trading game Magic.

Rachel Riley (left), co-presenter and number-wizard on British terrestrial Channel 4′s ever-popular words-and-numbers TV gameshow, Countdown  – which also had a stand at the festival – was MSI’s UK ambassador and hosted the event on Sunday, providing commentary on some of the games.

Although no go tournament took place, BGA Councillor Roger Huyshe  ran a stand with the aim of introducing attendees to go, managing to sell four beginner’s books and three basic sets as well as putting eight or nine people in touch with their nearest go club and playing trial games with half a dozen. The most promising contact was with a couple who have Local Authority responsibility for 17 schools and are interested in setting up school chess and go clubs. Also helping staff the stand were BGA Membership Secretary Paul Barnard, Welsh Champion Dylan Carter  and, from the Cardiff Go Club, Neil Greenwood, Keiran Grayson and club secretary Neil Moffatt.

Mindsports (International) Ltd plans to mount a similar festival at the Palazzo Congress Center, LA on Dec 7-8, the second in the US. (See EJ 7/10 for a report of the first LA event).

- Report by Tony Collman, British correspondent for the EJ; Photo: Rachel Riley, seen here appearing on BBC TV’s top-rated reality show Strictly Come Dancing, courtesy of fansite rachelriley.org

 

Categories: Europe,Go News
Share

EuroGoTV Update: Finland, Italy, Russia

Saturday September 21, 2013

torneo di pisa 2013Finland: The Nuorten SM 2013 finished September 15 in Helsinki with Bean Yang 4d in first, Jerry Savo 1k in second, and Samuel Laire 3k in third. Italy: Also on September 15, Carlo Metta 3d (left) took the Torneo di Pisa while Alessandro Pace 2d placed second and Alberto Zingoni 1d came in third. Russia: At the Russian Female Championship in Moscow on September 8, Dina Burdakova 5d bested Natalia Kovaleva 5d and Daria Koshkina 3k was third.
- Annalia Linnan, based on reports from EuroGoTV, which include complete result tables and all the latest European go news

Sino-British Weiqi Exchange Held in London

Sunday September 15, 2013

Wang Runan 8P, President of the Chinese Weiqi Association, was the guest of honor at the Sino-British Weiqi Exchanges, a cultural exchange event held September 7 at the British Museum in London. Organized by the UK Research and Development Centre for Chinese Traditional Culture (UKCTC) in association with the East Midland Youth Chinese Organisation (EMYCO) and in cooperation with the British Go Association (BGA), the event was sponsored by Chen Yongqing, a businessman who is a promoter and advocate of weiqi culture in China and is President of the Xi’an Fuji Vocational Weiqi Club, and Vice Chairman of the Xi’an Weiqi Association. He also traveled from China for the event.

The event was organized to promote cultural exchanges between China and the UK through the game of go (known as weiqi in China), set up a platform where go enthusiasts can not only learn about the game’s culture but also enhance their go skills, and enable go enthusiasts in the UK to find more friends and encourage more people to take up go, facilitating its promotion as a result.

UKCTC President Sherry Kuei welcomed the guest speakers and the hundred or so attendees to the event, introducing Counselor Li Hui of the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in London, who thanked the British Museum for the venue, UKCTC for their continuing contribution to the promotion of Chinese traditional culture - something now highly valued in China - and the EMYCO for inviting the guests. Admitting he himself was not a player, Li said he looked forward to learning more about this “magic art”.

Chen Jiuxuan, Chairman of the EMYCO and son of Chen Yongqing, next introduced his organisation, a recreational, non-religious, non-political, not-for-profit organisation for the youth of the large Chinese community in the England’s East Midlands region. The EMYCO recruits twice-yearly from students at the University of Nottingham and the Nottingham Trent University, which have strong links with China.

British Go Association (BGA) Vice President (and AGA member) Francis Roads took the stage next and gave an overview of the activities and growth of the BGA since its founding in 1952, noting that he’s been a member for much of that time, having joined not long after learning the game 48 years ago. During his 5-year tenure as President of the BGA in the early ’70s, he had written to the Chinese embassy with an invitation for their nation to engage with the UK’s go community. To laughter from the audience, organizers and guests he related how the only reply he received was “a little red book entitled ‘The Thoughts of Chairman Mao.’” Roads said that it gave him great pleasure to participate in the kind of cultural exchange he had hoped for then.

Dr Chan Cheng, Honorary President of the UKCTC, introduced Wang Runan 8P by reading the Ten Principles of Weiqi, also known as the Ten Golden Rules, from Wang’s fan (see China Calls For Return of Ancient Go Manuscript 9/9 EJ; an English translation of these core strategies of the game, together with discussion, can be found at Sensei’s Library).

Wang, a small, slight man with highly mobile features and eyes sparkling with good humor, spoke with animated enthusiasm as Wang Ren translated. He first expressed his great pleasure at finding himself speaking at the British Museum, an institution he had learnt of at school since it holds a good number of Chinese antiquities including the oldest known manual of his game (since transferred to the British Library; see same 9/9 EJ referenced above).

Wang gave a brief history of go, beginning with its origin in China “over 4000 years ago” and including colorful legends of historic figures such as General Xie An, who allegedly sat calmly playing go, leaving battle reports undispatched, as his army of 80,000 faced and overcame a force of 800,000  invaders. Or General Guan Yu who, in the absence of anesthetics, is said to have used a game of go to distract him from the pain of having the marrow scraped from his arm to remove poison from an arrow-wound (left). Wang indicated he personally would prefer to have the anesthetics now available if he found himself in similar circumstances.

Wang told how the game spread to Korea, to Japan, and from there it spread to Europe, North America and other parts of the world after Japan had reached a dominant position in mastery of the game over the last several hundred years. But, he pointed out, in recent years China has once again excelled in international competitions.

He drew attention to the application of go’s ideas in many fields of life and especially to strategy, claiming that the upper echelons of the US military and the CIA also now study the game as key to understanding East Asian strategic thinking. He also referred to US President Obama’s gift of a goban to Chinese Premier Hu Jintao on the first presidential visit to China since Nixon’s time (see 12/14/09 EJ), expressing puzzlement, however, that the President chose a Chinese cultural artifact rather than an American one such as perhaps a basketball.

Wang provided a few tips for newcomers to the game, suggesting that they “Avoid concentrating on local play, disregarding the rest of the board,” instead taking what he referred to as the “helicopter view” of the whole board. He also said players should deploy their stones widely about the board, use strategy like probe stones which may be sacrificed,  and stressed the importance of reading accurately, noting that professionals may look up to 30 moves ahead; beginners should try to read at least three moves ahead.

After a short break, the house reassembled less formally for actual play, with Wang playing simultaneously with four volunteer players from the BGA. On board one was Matthew Cocke 5d of Epsom Go Club (above right, 2nd from top), one of the UK’s strongest players, who was given a 3-stone handicap. This game was televised on a large screen, with Francis Roads giving a running commentary over the PA  with the help of a laser pointer (right). Cocke was visibly shaken when, towards the end of the middle game, he realized he had allowed four stones to be cut off, an oversight which quite possibly cost him the game. Out of courtesy to the British who, like other Westerners, have the Japanese traditions deeply imbued, territory scoring was used rather than the Chinese tradition of area scoring. Cocke lost by 4 points. At the next board was was British Under-10 Champion Oscar Selby 8k, who took nine stones and lost by six points, earning praise from Wang. Next was engineer Mark Baoliang Zhang 1k of Diss (no club) who took seven stones and was behind when the game had to be halted because the museum was closing. Michael Webster 2d of the Central London Go Club, taking six stones, had perhaps the best result of the four, with Wang conceding that Webster had the lead at the point play stopped in this also unfinished game.

After the play it remained only for fond farewells and a seemingly endless round of photographs of various combinations of personages before the last of the party reluctantly left, the doors behind them closing securely on the British Museum’s priceless collection of treasures from around the world.

- report/photos by Tony Collman, British correspondent for the EJ. Top right: Lisa Quastella of the British Museums’s Sales and Marketing Dept presenting Wang with the gift of “Lotus Flower Print” by Ding Liangxian; group photo: (seated, l-r) Wang Ren, Francis Roads, Dr Chan Cheng, Wang Runan, Sherry Kuei, Chen Yongqing, Chen Jiuxuan. Translations were provided by Wang Ren,  friend of the UKCTC (Wang, Dr Chan) and Yuki Kuan of the EMYCO (Kuei, Chen, Roads), who also provided extensive assistance with the compilation of this report.
NOTE: the original report has been updated to reflect that Wang Runan is President of the Chinese Weiqi Association, not Vice Chairman, as originally reported. 

Upcoming European Tournament: 29th Gothenburg Open

Sunday September 15, 2013

goteborg open 2013One of the largest tournaments in northern Europe, the annual 29th Gothenburg Open will take place November 1-3. As a five-round standard McMahon tournament, each player is guaranteed five games arranged to be as even as possible. The standard entry fee is 30 EU. However, players 10k or less can register for half price and first-time Gothenburg Open players play for free. Players are also welcome to stay at the venue at no extra charge. To register or for more information including schedule, venue, and official rules, please visit the official Gothenburg Open website.
— Annalia Linnan; for complete listings, check out the European Tournament Calendar; photo courtesy of Gothenburg Open

EuroGoTV Update: Netherlands, Hungary, Czech Republic

Saturday September 14, 2013

BRNO tournament 2013Netherlands: At The Delfts Toernooi on September 8, Filip Vanderstappen 5d defeated Rene Aaij 5d and Gelmer Bouwman 3d placed third. Hungary: The Kispesti Nadydij Goverseny also finished September 8 in Bupdapest with Dominik Bovis 4d in first, Peter Marko 4d in second, and Gabor Szabics 5d in third. Czech Republic: In Prague, Jan Simara 6d (left) took the Brno Tournament on September 8. Behind him were Lukas Podpera 6d and Ondrej Silt 6d.
- Annalia Linnan, based on reports from EuroGoTV, which include complete result tables and all the latest European go news

China Calls For Return of Ancient Go Manuscript

Monday September 9, 2013

Wang Runan 8P, the President of the Chinese Weiqi Association, last week asked the British to return the Weiqi Classic, also known as the Dunhuang Go Manual, to China. The manuscript, which dates back to the ninth century, is  a copy of  the earliest known manual of go, known as weiqi (or weichi) in China, where the game originated; the original manual is thought to have originated in the sixth century. It was taken from the “Library Cave” in Dunhuang, China in 1907 by Aurel Stein and is now in the collection of the British Library in London.

Wang was speaking at a press conference at the British Museum on September 5 to publicize British-Chinese Weiqi Cultural Exchange Event held on September 7 at the museum, hosted by the UK Research and Development Centre for Chinese Traditional Culture and the East Midland Youth Chinese Organisation, in cooperation with the British Go Association (BGA).

A partial English translation of the fascinating text of the Weiqi Classic, with notes, can be found in the Library’s database entry for the item.

Report by Tony Collman, British Correspondent for the E-Journal. Photos: BOTTOM LEFT: Wang Runan, by Tony Collman, displaying fan with calligraphy spelling out 10 principles of weiqi; TOP RIGHT: The Weiqi Classic (beginning),  courtesy of the International Dunhuang Project, British Library. NOTE: this report has been updated to reflect that Wang Runan is President (not Vice Chairman) of the Chinese Weiqi Association.

Categories: Europe,Go Art,Go News
Share

EuroGoTV Update: Germany, Croatia, England

Sunday September 8, 2013

koelner go-turnier 2013Germany: The Koelner Go-Turnier 2013 finished September 1 in Koeln with Lukas Kraemer 5d (left) in first, Benjamin Teuber 6d in second, and Jonas Welticke 4d in third. Croatia: Also on September 1, Zoran Mutabzija 5d won the Croatian Championship 2013 – Final 6 in Zagreb. Sead Bacevina 2d came in second and Lavro Furjanic 1k in third. England: Isle of Man hosted two tournaments on August 18, a main tournament and an afternoon tournament. The main tournament wrapped up on August 23 with Matthew Macfayden 6d in first followed by Matthew Cocke 5d in second and Shigehiko Uno 4d in third. However, Uno dominated the afternoon tournament while James Hutchinson 1d took second and Toby Manning 2d placed third.
— Annalia Linnan, based on reports from EuroGoTV, which include complete result tables and all the latest European go news