American Go E-Journal » Events/Tournaments

Reflections on Pair Go

Wednesday February 22, 2017

by Eric Lui 1P2017.02.22_A Simple Guide to Pair Go

Editor’s note: Lui, who’s now a regular game commentator for the E-Journal, wrote this after attending the second Pair Go World Cup in July 2016 and recently shared it with us. Coincidentally, Hajin Lee recently made a short Pair Go introduction video, saying she hopes “to see more pair go events in the US and Europe in the future.” We hope you enjoy both.

Reflecting upon his legendary career, the great Sakata Eio opined that a necessary prerequisite for go mastery is self-2017.02.22_pair-go-world-cup-411_sreliance, which can only be developed once one fully accepts the game’s solitary nature, specifically the completely isolated state that all players find themselves in during the process of a game.

As far as I can tell, there are two types of people in this world: Pair Go enthusiasts and those who can do without. Takemiya Masaki gushes that Pair Go is “playing catch with the emotions…the instant that love is born.” Ishida Yoshio, on the other hand, says that in Pair Go you have three opponents.

The most anticipated match in the first round of the main knockout tournament saw the departure of powerhouse 2017.02.22_pair-go-world-cupChinese pair Shi Yue and Wang Chenxing, who succumbed to the charming synergy of Choi Cheolhan and Oh Yujin. Our first-round victory against the Thai pair was defined more by relief than pleasure, since it ensured that we would get to play at least one more game. In the second round against Taiwanese superstars Chen Shiyuan and Joanne Missingham, the game became difficult right from the start when a mistake in judgment set the tone for the rest of the way. My partner Sarah Yu fought gamely during many continuous kos and we maintained our chances for a while but were unable to cause an upset.

Our conquerors would go on to score an excellent victory in the semifinal against the Choi-Oh pair, earning themselves a 2017.02.22_lui-pair-gofinal showdown with the Chinese pair of Ke Jie and Yu Zhiying, the male and female world No. 1 respectively.
During the last round of the Shuffle Pair Go friendship match, I was paired with the Thai female player, Pattraporn Aroonphaichitra. As we waited at the board for our opponents, Amy Song, the Australian female player took the seat across from Pattraporn. But who was her partner? I took a quick glance around – there were still a few empty seats and just a couple minutes until game time. I couldn’t help but smile when I noticed Sarah, looking ever so serene, sitting next to Iyama Yuta. My new partner was completely absorbed in her phone, and I opened my mouth to say something when, sensing a disturbance in the Force, we both looked up. Making his way through the large crowd that had gathered around the closed-off playing area with ruthless efficiency was “One Dragon Per Game” Shi Yue, one of the strongest and most universally feared Chinese pros for his aggressive playing style.

2017.02.21_pair-go-eric-luiPattraporn played beautifully and we enjoyed a lead for most of the game. It was a singular experience to watch as Shi Yue struggled to contain his frustration with the position as his plans to deal us pain were disrupted again and again. When the game was over, Shi Yue transitioned seamlessly from executioner to teacher, pointing out missed opportunities and explaining his thought processes at key points while the rest of us sat transfixed by the clarity of his analysis. A while later, only dimly aware that the postmortem had concluded and that the others had started putting the stones away, I slowly and reluctantly joined in.

Later that night, long after Yu Zhiying and Ke Jie had collected their 10 million yen 1st place prize, I would find myself tuning in to the Wimbledon final from my hotel room. During one of Andy Murray’s signature tirades, I realized that Ishida was wrong. Whether you are playing Pair Go, individual go, or tennis, the number of opponents remains the same. One, and it’s not the one on the other side. As Murray sealed the first set with a thunderous forehand and an emphatic fist pump, his fierce visage betraying equal parts triumph and anguish, I was reminded of a timeless image of Sakata, in the midst of his prime, staring at the go board with an expression of utmost intensity and exquisite pain. A formidable, yet lone individual.

Pair Go was invented to popularize the game of go by emphasizing the social aspects of the game. But no matter how many players there are, the game itself remains the same mysterious, fascinating challenge it has been for thousands of years.
photo: US team Sarah Yu and Eric Lui with Cho Chikun

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Categories: Pair Go
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San Diego Prepares to Host 2017 US Go Congress

Tuesday December 13, 2016

On December 4, the San Diego Go Club kicked off its organizational campaign to host the 2017 U.S. Go Congress next August2016.12.11_san-diego-congress-prep 5-12, by sponsoring a go-pizza party for local Congress volunteers at the club president’s home. Some two dozen people showed up to play go, eat pizza and hear about jobs that need to be done over the next eight months. From moving more than 2,000 pounds of Congress equipment — including boards, stones, easels, etc — to the Congress site at the Town and Country Resort, to scheduling the lectures, game analyses and simultaneous exhibitions for the professional go players coming from Japan, China and Korea, many tasks have to be coordinated. Co-Directors for the Congress, Les Lanphear III and Ted Terpstra say they’re confident that the team of workers will be up to the challenges as many past Congress volunteers have already stepped up for 2017. “New volunteers are always welcome, especially for Check-in Day on Saturday, August 5,” says Terpstra. Anyone interested in helping at the 2017 Congress should email him at ted.terpstr2016.12.11_2017GoCongressLogoa@gmail.com.

The 2017 Congress web site is not quite ready, but should be shortly. “People will be able to register for the Congress, choose a dining package and book a room with a special negotiated price,” says Terpstra. The Town and Country Resort is a 46-acre enclave in the heart of the San Diego tourist area. The zoo, museums in Balboa Park, the airport, Seaworld, the beaches and downtown are all within a 10-minute drive. All Congress events and meals are a short walk from the rooms. “No streets need to be crossed in going from the rooms to the playing area,” Terpstra promises.
- photos by Ted Terpstra; Congress logo by Emily Shedlock

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Kim Sooyoung and Park Jongwook of Korea Win Amateur Pair Go Championship

Sunday December 4, 2016

A Korean pair won this year’s 27th International Amateur Pair Go Championship in Tokyo, besting a Taiwanese team in the 2016.12.04_us-pairfinals.  Kim Sooyoung and Park Jongwook of Korea beat Pai Shin-Hui and Huang Wei of Taiwan.  Pai and Huang had paved the way, however, by beating a strong Chinese pair in round one of the 32-pair five round event.  The US team of Jeremy Chiu and Gabriella Su (right) ended with a solid 3-2 record, losing in rounds one and three to a Japanese pair and the team from China, but beating Germany and Austria before facing a strong Russian pair, Grigorii Fionin and Elvina Kalsberg, also 2-2, in the final round.  In the 3rd edition of the World Students Pair Go Championship, North American pair Amira Song of Canada and Andrew Zalesak of North Carolina went 1-3, beating the Mexican pair but failing to beat the percentages in their other games against a Japanese pair and not one, but two, Korean university pairs.  A Japanese pair took first.
- report by Andy Okun (standing in photo); photo by Thomas Hsiang

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Categories: Japan,Pair Go
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Pandanet Cup Registration Opens

Thursday November 10, 2016

Registration is now open for the 21st Pandanet Cup Internet World Amateur Go TournamentA main division and four 2016.11.10_pandanet-title-top_eranked division will be held. All the participants in each division will compete in the preliminary round; players who win their way through the preliminaries will compete in a round to choose regional representatives, followed by the finals. Eight players (Asia & Oceania 4, Europe & Africa 2, North, Central & South America 2) will compete in the main division and four players in each of the other divisions. 
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Categories: Events/Tournaments
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Mark Lee Wins Cotsen Open, Sweeping 5-0

Sunday October 23, 2016

Mark Lee won the 2016 Cotsen Open, scoring a decisive 5-0 sweep in which the only real threat came in Round 3 when he2016.10.23_mark-lee-trophy faced “a very hard situation” against Dae Hyuk “Danny” Ko. In the end he prevailed against Ko by resignation, a similar end for most of the rest of his games, earning a second straight Cotsen title. Lee (center) missed this year’s US Open and says he’s been hard at work studying, but not go. He’s a freshman in college now, where he says his favorite subject is geography. “I like it, but it’s not nearly as much fun as go,” he laughed.

In addition to tournament sponsor Eric Cotsen (right), AGA president Andy Okun (left) thanked Ambassador Lee Key Cheol, Consul General of the Republic of Korea in Los Angeles for his strong support for the Cotsen Open. He also thanked Kim Nakjung, Director of the Korean Cultural Center in Los Angeles, and Seunghoan Roh, General Manager of the KCCLA, which hosted the Cotsen Open this year. “We really appreciate the longstanding support, not just for this great event, but for promoting go throughout the United States,” said Okun. Cotsen, in addition to thanking all the players for showing up, expressed special appreciation to his  tournament team, “who handled this year’s challenges incredibly well.”

See below for the Cotsen winner report. Click here for the 2016 Cotsen crosstab, where we’ll be posting the top-board games broadcast this weekend on KGS. If you’d like your game record included, please email it to us at journal@usgo.org; be sure to complete all the game information.

2016.10.23Myungwan-Mark Lee 7d vs Danny Ko 7dSix more videos have been posted on the AGA’s YouTube channel, including the Day Two preview with Chris Garlock and Andrew Jackson; Myungwan Kim 9P on the Round 3 game between Mark Lee 7d and Danny Ko 7d, Jennie Shen 2P on the Round 4 game between Mark Lee and Luo Qipeng, Yang Yilun 7p on his exhibition 2016.10.23-tourney-shotgame against Liao Guiyong 9p, Jennie Shen 2P on the Round 5 game between Mark Lee and Chang Duek Je and a wrap-up interview with AGA president Andy Okun. You can check out all the Cotsen Open video reports on this handy 2016 Cotsen playlist.

2016 Cotsen Winner Report
Open winners: 1st: Mark Lee; 2nd: Qiping Luo; 3rd: Aaron Ye; 4th: Andrew Lu; 5th: Danny Ko; 6th: Deuk Je Chang.
Division A: 1st: Qi-Hao Zhao; 2nd: Mellisa Xuning Zhang; 3rd: Kevin Chao
Division B: 1st: Tim Chang; 2nd: Jesse Jenskins; 3rd: Seowoo Wang
Division C: 1st: Kevin Blaw; 2nd: Yunjen Lee; 3rd: Angelo Orlando Cafazzo
Division D: 1st: Daniel Su; 2nd: Jung Ho Lee; 3rd: Raghavendra Morthy
Division E: 1st: Zongren Huang; 2nd: Alexander Guru; 3rd: Lucia Moscola
Club winners: 1st: Santa Monica, 2nd: Orange County, 3rd: Bay Area
- report/photos by Chris Garlock

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Mark Lee Cruising in Cotsen

Saturday October 22, 2016

Defending champion Mark Lee 7D cruised through the first three rounds of this year’s Cotsen Open on Saturday, putting2016.10.22_mark-lee himself in position to capture the title for the second year in the final two rounds on Sunday. Also undefeated are Qipeng Luo and Andrew Lu. Click here for complete results through Round 3:  2016.10.21_cotsen-tiebreakreport Catch the top-board action live on KGS, starting at 10:30a PST. The E-Journal’s coverage this year includes short videos posted on YouTube, including player interviews, brief pro commentaries and an interview with Eric Cotsen. Photos and videos are also posted on the AGA’s Facebook page and more photos on our Twitter feed. The tournament, one of the largest and most popular on the AGA’s annual calendar, returned to the Los Angeles Korean Cultural Center this year, and attracted a field of 166 players.
- report/photo by Chris Garlock

Cotsen Open Videos2016.10.22_yang-commentary
2016 Cotsen Open – Chris Garlock and Andrew Jackson preview the Open (2:39)
2016 Cotsen Open — Interview with Eric Cotsen (8:59)
2016 Cotsen Open – Rd 1 Bd 1 review! (Yilun Yang 7P on Mark Lee 7d vs Wenyi Wang 6d) (17:50)
2016 Cotsen Open – Rd 2 Bd 1 review! (Yilun Yang 7P on Mark Lee 7d vs Kai Naoyuki 7d) (13:10
“Why We Play Go” at the 2016 Cotsen Open, Samantha Fede with Lisa Scott (1:42)
“Why We Play Go” at the 2016 Cotsen Open, Samantha Fede with Rui Wong (2:21)
“Why We Play Go” at the 2016 Cotsen Open, Samantha Fede with Sam Tregar (1:37)
Videos produced by Chris Garlock; Andrew Jackson, Technical Producer

 10/22 (7:15a PST): This report has been updated to include the other undefeated top players and the PDF of game results.

 

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Cotsen Pre-registration Deadline Tuesday; Game Recorders Wanted

Tuesday October 18, 2016

Pre-registration for this year’s Cotsen Open — this weekend, October 22nd-23rd in Los Angeles — closes at 11:59p Tuesday, 2016.10.18_cotsen-P1000211October 18th (not Thursday, 10/20 as previously posted). Players who pre-register get a discounted $20 entry fee, free food truck lunch on both days and a full refund of the entry fee if they play in all five games; click here to register. Day-of registration will also be available for $25. The Cotsen Open features thousands of dollars in prizes, an extremely competitive Open Division, free masseuses (right) to massage players during their games, and a demonstration game between Yilun Yang 7p and Guiyong Liao 9P on Sunday. 

The E-Journal will provide live KGS commentary on top board games as well as posting video reports on the AGA’s YouTube channel. If you’re interested in being a game recorder — a great way to get stronger — please email journal@usgo.org
photo: 2015 Cotsen Open; photo by Chris Garlock

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Pandanet City League Registration Extended

Monday October 17, 2016

Registration for the Pandanet City League has been extended. “We’re extending registration a week for all of the teams,” reports Steve Colburn. “Has your team signed up yet?” Check the rules and email Steve Colburn to register.

pandalogo-4885cf7392ac5bc75a68d553b7287b04

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Last week for Pandanet AGA City League Registration

Wednesday October 12, 2016

2013.09.29_panda-logoThe registration for the Pandanet AGA City League is open for just one more week. Contact Steve Colburn for more information or to register. If you are registering please read the rules before signing up.

“We are also looking for a new set of video reviewers this year,” Colburn reports. If you are interested please contact him above.

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Pandanet AGA City League Registration Continues

Thursday October 6, 2016

pandalogo-4885cf7392ac5bc75a68d553b7287b04The fifth year of the Pandanet AGA City League is starting soon. Register your team before October 16th to ensure your team is able to play. Please make sure to read the latest rules for the tournament. Email Steve Colburn to register or re-register your team. Any questions can also be sent to this address.

Are you a strong go streamer? Contact Steve at the email above for an opportunity with the City League during the season.

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