American Go E-Journal » Events/Tournaments

Gotham Tourney Filling Up

Wednesday September 25, 2013

If you haven’t yet registered for the upcoming Gotham Go Tournament on October 12th, you may want to do it soon as space islimited,” reminds organizer Peter Armenia. Register online. “There will be generous cash prizes in all sections, and goodies for all!” Armenia promises. “We will have breakfast bagels and coffee as well as great snacks all through the day. Come celebrate go in the Wonder City!”

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Expanding Online Efforts, AGA Launches On-Line Self-Paired Tourney On KGS

Sunday September 22, 2013

The American Go Association is launching a beta program, AGA On-Line Games, on KGS on October 1. “Playing with a good selection of opponents of different styles and strengths is key for player development and satisfaction,” says organizer Bob Gilman, “and many find this difficult to find locally.” The program has two parts, a Self-Paired Tournament, a handicap tournament patterned on the popular tournament of the same name at the annual U.S. Go Congress, and a schedule of simultaneous games given by players AGA 4 dan and stronger.

Click here for self-paired tournament details, and here to register. The AGA On-Line Self-Paired Tournament is open to all current AGA members and will run through the end of December. Players must be members to participate. Prizes will be awarded in eight categories. “Generally, participants will be rewarded for playing a large number of games against a variety of opponents with different ratings,” says Gilman, “and of course, their results in those games.” For this beta tournament, the tournament games will not be AGA-rated. “There are plans underway to set up a parallel AGA rating system for on-line games,” Gilman says, “and, when this is in place, these games may count toward an AGA on-line rating.”

The simultaneous games will be played in a new AGA Community Room on KGS, a private room which will be open to all current AGA members. For admission to this room, contact bobgilman.aga@gmail.com. You will need to give your name, AGA ID, and your KGS user name. In general the simuls will be weekly at dates and times selected by the volunteers offering them.

“We also hope that the AGA On-Line Games playing experience and the relationships it develops will whet players’ appetites to seek out more opportunities for in-person play,” Gilman adds. “The program is the first step in enhancing the AGA’s online presence. The experience we gain from this KGS beta will put us in a position to test with additional servers for a comprehensive program of AGA-rated games, tournaments, prizes, simultaneous games, and more, enabling members to meet and connect with other members.”

Winning Club at Cotsen to Win $1,000

Sunday September 22, 2013

The winning go club at the upcoming Cotsen Open takes home a $1,000 prize. Points are awarded based on how well each club’s members do in the popular event, scheduled for Saturday and Sunday, October 26-27 at the Korean Cultural Center in Los Angeles, CA. “So make sure your club is well-represented!” says registrar Samantha Davis. Click here for details and to register. The 5-round tournament also features game commentaries by Myung-wan Kim 9P and Yilun Yang 7P, free lunch both days and free shoulder massages while you play. photo: Myungwan Kim commenting a game at the 2012 Cotsen; photo by Chris Garlock

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

Wang Chenxing Takes First International Title With Bingsheng Cup Win

Tuesday September 17, 2013

4th Bingsheng CupWang Chenxing 5P (left) secured her first major international title when she defeated Yu Zhiying 5p in the 4th Bingsheng Cup on September 12. On her journey to the final round, Wang defeated last year’s winner Rui Naiwei 9P, Xie Yimin 6P, and Li He 3P.

However, 15-year-old Yu deserves recognition in her own right. If she had defeated Wang, she would have broken the world record for youngest international title holder in the go world. The current record is held by Lee Changho 9p for his win at the 3rd Tongyang Securities Cup in 1992 when he was 16 years and 6 months. At 15 years and 10 months, Yu’s triumph would have shattered Lee’s 20-year streak.

First played in 2010, the Bingsheng Cup remains the only women’s individual international go tournament. It draws the top 16 players from China, Korea, Japan, Taiwan, Europe, North America, and Oceania. Named after Sun Zi (aka Sun Tzu), the author of The Art Of War, the Bingsheng Cup is held annually at the Sun Wu Memorial Hall on Qionglong Mountain in Suzhou, China. For more information about the 4th Bingsheng Cup including photos, a post-game interview with Wang, and game records, visit Go Game Guru.
­- Annalia Linnan, based on a longer article by Go Game Guru; photo courtesy of Go Game Guru

Cotsen Registration Opens

Sunday September 15, 2013

Free lunch, shoulder massages and pro game commentaries…registration is now open for the Cotsen Open, one of the most unique and popular go events on the annual North American go calendar. The tournament is set for Saturday and Sunday, October 26-27 at the Korean Cultural Center in Los Angeles, CA. Myung-wan 9P, one of the organizers of the US pro system, will also be on hand to teach and play simultaneous games, while local Southern California favorite and renowned US teacher Yi-Lun Yang 7P will also teach and provide game commentary. Registration and lunch are free but only for those who pre-register (and who play both days), “so sign up now!” say organizers. photo: 2012 Cotsen Open players line up for their free lunch at the Korean lunch truck; photo by Chris Garlock

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

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