American Go E-Journal » Events/Tournaments

WAGC Go Players on Destiny, Predicting the Weather and Managing a Disco Bar

Tuesday May 15, 2012

One of just two women players at this year’s World Amateur Go Championship, Chile’s Leslie Perez (top left) says it was “destiny” that she learned to play go, taught by a classmate at university in Valparaiso where she was studying for her bachelor’s degree in computer science. She’s playing at 4k at the WAGC but had reached 1k on KGS a few years ago before her studies cut back her playing time. She’s now studying for a Ph.D in Belgium, “but I’m still playing go” she tells James Davies in a Ranka Online interview. In other interviews, Norway’s Pal Sannes (bottom right) reveals that he works for the Norwegian Meteorological Institute, predicting the weather…Yuan Zhou (US, top middle) talks about being “quite pleased” about losing to his student Josh Lee…Malaysia’s Zaid Waqi (bottom left) discusses developments in Malaysian go…Kerem Karaerkek (Turkey, top right) talks about his work as a mountain guide, guitarist and disco bar manager…Japan’s Nakazono Seizo (bottom middle) says that his go salon’s 6-point komi, permitting drawn games, “works fine.”
- adapted from James Davies’ report on Ranka Online; photos/collage by John Pinkerton

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2012 WAGC Round 4 Game Records

Tuesday May 15, 2012

US-Japan (Commentary by So Yokoku 8P); HongKong-China (Commentary by So Yokoku 8P); Czechia-Taipei (Uncommented)
With all players present except the still missing Moroccan, the afternoon round started a few minutes early…Click here for Ranka Online’s report.   

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2012 WAGC Round 3 Game Records

Tuesday May 15, 2012

China-Macau (Commentary by Yang Shuang 3P); DPRKorea-Austria; Japan-Korea; Slovakia-Romania
Fifteen minutes before the start of Round 3 on May 13, Qiao Zhijian, the main Chinese contestant, was already seated at his board…Click here for Ranka Online’s report on the round. 

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U.S. Beats Japan in Controversial 4th-Round WAGC Game

Monday May 14, 2012

The fourth-round contest between the US and Japan turned into a controversial and dramatic slugfest involving a series of severe attacks, both players in overtime, a key losing move in the late middle-game, a ko fight with both players in their last period of overtime and a sudden loss by Japan on time, complicated by a clock dispute that went all the way up to the tournament’s chief referee. See So Yokoku 8P’s commentary on the game to see what all the excitement was about. Click here for Ranka Online’s complete reports on Rounds 3 and 4 (including a more detailed report  on the US-Japan game), here for the latest results and here for Round 3 game records and Round 4 game records.
- Chris Garlock; photo: Nakazono (left), referees Liu and Sun (center) and Zhou; photo by John Pinkerton

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WAGC Game Report: Round 2

Sunday May 13, 2012

Despite a good opening, the United States’ Yuan Zhou 7d became the second seeded player to suffer defeat when he lost to 13-year-old Chen Cheng-Hsun 7d (at left) of Taipei  in just 152 moves. “I wasn’t prepared to play such a tough player on the first day,” Zhou confided to the E-Journal. “But it’s great to see such strong young players.” When Cheng-Hsun competed in the WAGC in Hangzhou in 2010 he was thinking of going directly from primary school into a professional career. Instead, he took the more normal course of entering middle school, but his playing strength has continued to improve and he would already be serious competition for a lot of professionals.

The game between Nadeem Prem 3d (Brazil) and Leslie Perez 4k (Chile, at right) developed into a contest worth watching, despite the wide disparity in listed rankings. Overcoming the six-stone ranking difference, Perez won handily by 17.5 points to score the tournament’s first win by a woman; her Chinese counterpart, Fang Xiaoyan, the tournament’s only other female player, had already lost her second-round game to Andreas Gotzfried of Luxembourg.

In the Japan-Netherlands game, an early mistake by Mr Nakazono gave Alexander Eerbeek the lead, and he did not seem about to give it back. As the game progressed Mr Nakazono’s expression became increasingly grim, but in the end he managed to kill a large group and Alexander resigned. Japan had had a close call, but had earned the right to face Korea in the next round.

In the Czechia-Germany game, Czechia (Lukas Podepera) launched a fierce attack on a large German group, forcing it to struggle for a minimal life with just two eyes, and kept the pressure up relentlessly until Germany (Benjamin Teuber) resigned. Ten minutes later, Slovenia (Matoh Leon 5d) prevailed over Argentina (Eduardo Lopez Herrero 5d). The winners of these two games will meet in Round 3.

The last game to end, at 4:55, was the one between the North Korean and Hungarian players, Ri Kwang-Hyok (at left) and Pal Balogh. ‘My opponent made a mistake in the opening and I got the lead,’ said Balogh, ‘but I quickly matched him with a mistake of my own. After that I think I was still ahead, but I gave him a chance to attack and he took it.’ Balogh persevered to the end but lost by 9.5 points. Ri Kwang-Hyok, a veteran of the 2010 Asian games, is another player who would be serious competition for many professionals. Although Balogh looked shaken, his final comment was, ‘I feel happy with the way I played.’
- adapted from James Davies’ report on Ranka Online; click here for latest results; Click here for online game records for the following Round 1 games: Finland-UK; Hungary-DPRKorea (Commentary by So Yokoku 8P; Taipei-US (Commentary by So Yokoku 8P); photos by John Pinkerton

 

2012 WAGC Round 2 Game Records

Sunday May 13, 2012

Finland-UK (Commentary by Kaz Furuyama); Hungary-DPRKorea (Commentary by So Yokoku 8P); Taipei-US (Commentary by So Yokoku 8P); Japan-Netherlands (uncommented)

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WAGC Game Report: Round 1

Sunday May 13, 2012

The World Amateur Go Championship games are played with basic time of one hour per player, followed by thirty-seconds-per move overtime, each player having three thirty-second periods to use. In Round 1 on Sunday morning, among the four seeded players, Qiao Zhijian (China), Lee Hyunjoon (Korea), and Yuan Zhou (U.S.A.) won handily, but Remi Campagnie (France) was upended by Pavol Lisy (Slovakia). This was a come-from-behind victory. ‘I was losing,’ Pavol said, ‘but my opponent made a big mistake, and after that I was winning.’ It was not an upset, however: both players are ranked 5-dan. In the other battles of the 5-dans, Leon Matoh (Slovenia) defeated Igor Popov (Russia), Lukas Podpera (Czechia) won a close 2.5-point victory over Longyang Li (New Zealand), and Eduardo Lopez (Argentina) prevailed over Martin Li (Sweden) by 8.5 points. The two youngest contestants both won their games, Chen Cheng-Hsun (Chinese Taipei) beating Carlos Acuna (Colombia) and Chan Chihin (Hong Kong) beating Felicien Mazille (Switzerland). Nakazono Seizo (Japan) won by a comfortable margin against Saechen Panjawat (Thailand), and in a very short game, Ri Kwang Hyok (DPR Korea) defeated Fang Xiaoyan (the second Chinese player). Chan Kouk Wang (Macau) won by forfeit when Ismail Ja (Morocco) failed to show up. Last to end was the game between Pal Balogh (Hungary, 6d) and Andreas Gotzfried (Luxembourg, 4d). ‘I thought it was about even through the middle game, but I lost a lot of points in the endgame,’ Andreas said. He had turned in a creditable performance, against one of the strongest players in Europe.
- excerpted from James Davies’ report on Ranka Online. Click here for latest results. Click here for online game records for the following Round 1 games: DPR Korea-China (Commentary by So Yokoku 8P, shown at left in photo at top right, with translator Ting Ting Chen and American Go E-Journal Managing Editor Chris Garlock); Thailand-Japan (Commentary by Yang Shuang 3P); US-Norway; Brazil-Korea.  Bottom left photo: Cornel Burzo (Romania) reviews his Round 1 game with Zaid Waqi (Malaysia). photos by John Pinkerton

 

2012 WAGC Round 1 Game Records

Sunday May 13, 2012

DPR Korea-China (Commentary by So Yokoku 8P); Thailand-Japan (Commentary by Yang Shuang 3P); US-Norway (uncommented); Brazil-Korea (uncommented).

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33rd WAGC Begins: E-Journal & Ranka Online Team Up for Coverage

Saturday May 12, 2012

The 33rd edition of the World Amateur Go Championships (WAGC) began Sunday morning, May 13, in the gold-draped main playing hall of the Guangzhou Chess Institute (“chess” in this context refers to go, chess and Chinese Chess) in Guangzhou, also known as Canton, the capital city of Guangdong Province in South China. Fifty-six players (Poland’s player missed his plane and has been replaced with a second Chinese player) have traveled from around the world to compete for the title as world’s top amateur. While China and Korea are once again favorites to win, the U.S. last year cracked the top five with Eric Lui’s 3rd-place finish and is represented this year by Yuan Zhou 7d, the popular teacher and author who’s won a number of U.S. titles. The American Go E-Journal and Ranka Online have teamed up again this year to provide full coverage of the WAGC, including tournament reports, game records and commentaries and photos; reports will be posted regularly on the AGA’s website, at Ranka Online and in the daily E-Journal. The 8-round tournament runs May 13-16.
- Chris Garlock; photos by John Pinkerton
Click here to download these Round 1 sgf game records:
DPR Korea (Ri Kwang Hyok 6D) vs China (Fang Xiaoyan 3D)
- Commentary by So Yokoku 8P
US (Yuan Zhou 7D) vs Norway (Pal Harald Sannes 5D) 

WAGC Orientation & Pairings

Saturday May 12, 2012

By 2:35 p.m. on Saturday, May 12, most of the contestants in the 33rd World Amateur Go Championship had made a good start on recovering from jetlag, had sampled the breakfast and lunch buffets at Guangzhou’s Baiyun Hotel, and were ready for the orientation meeting. The meeting opened with an address by chief referee Hua Yigang 8P, who described go as a sport, an art, and a good platform for communication, and noted that east or west, Canton cuisine is the best. Executive chief referee Liu Jing 8P then went over the tournament rules and the computerized pairing system, which were the same as used in Hangzhou in 2010, and announced that since only 55 contestants were coming, an extra Chinese player had been added to make an even number. Next came the main business, which was to draw the numbers that the computer would use in determining the pairings throughout the tournament…click here for Ranka Online’s complete report.
- James Davies; photo: Carlos Andres Acuna Silva (right) drawing for player numbers; photo by Ivan Vigano