American Go E-Journal » Events/Tournaments

Japan, Korea & China Sweep EU, US & Chinese Taipei in World Mind Games

Saturday December 10, 2011

“Today’s games were uneventful,” reports Thomas Hsiang from Day Two of the SportAccord World Mind Games in Beijing, China.  “Japan, Korea, China cruised to 5-win victories versus the EU, US, and Chinese Taipei teams.  Andy Liu played against Park Jeonghwan today (12/10) and said he was thoroughly impressed. ‘I did not even know how I lost.  Park’s play was perfect’”.  Chinese Taipei’s popular Hei Jia-jia played a tough game against Li He, a game featured on the net broadcast.  The game also attracted many pros in the study room.  After an early exchange that favored Li, Jia-jia fought furiously back in an exciting fighting game.  But in the end she still fell short.”

Tomorrow will see the EU pitted against US; the winner will avoid a last-place finish.  Also, China and Korea will crash to produce the likely champion team.  Japan will play Chinese Taipei for a probable third place.

“Andy Okun and I had a two-hour interview with Lee Youngho, brother of Lee Changho, and Xie Rui, the top Weiqi reporter in China who works for Titan Journal, a sports newspaper.  Based on this interview, Titan will publish a feature story about go in America in its next issue.”

Click here for James Davies’ more detailed reports on Ranka Online, where you can also follow live matches, check out the schedule, results and participants.
photo: SAWMG Opening Ceremonies; collage courtesy Ranka Online

 

 

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U.S. Team Comes Close But Fails to Upset Japan in 1st Round of SportAccord World Mind Games

Friday December 9, 2011

Results from the first day’s team competitions at the SportAccord World Mind Games in Beijing, China on December 9 went pretty much as expected, Thomas Hsiang tells the E-Journal, with China, Japan, and Korea winning against EU, US, and Chinese Taipei. “Chinese Taipei nearly pulled an upset when Chen Shih-iuan defeated Lee Sedol, and Hei Jia-jia (Joanne Missingham) won against Kim Hyemin.  In the game that finished last, the young boy Wang Yuan-jun — only 14! — was leading in his game against Lee Younggo.  Lee finally prevailed and dashed Chinese Taipei’s hope for a big upset.”

The U.S. lost to Japan 0-5, but Andy Liu and Jie Li (right) both had their chances, Hsiang reports. “Andy played ‘fast and very smart’ against Sakai Hideaki, according to Gu Li and Kong Jie, the two Chinese world champions.  Gu Li spent more than an hour watching Andy and told me afterwards that he was very impressed and ‘that unknown young man had a good game and many chances to win’.  Jie lost to Yamashiro Hiroshi by just a half-point, and also had many chances to win, according to Kong Jie.  So our young players made a very positive impression.”

EU lost to China 0-5.

The broadcasting schedule for December 10 will feature the game between Hei Jia-jia and Li He — “the ‘game of the two beauties,’ as they say here in China,” says Hsiang. Tentatively, Andy Liu will be featured on the 14th when he plays against Xie He from China.

Click here for James Davies’ more detailed reports on Ranka Online, where you can also follow live matches, check out the schedule, results and participants.

In other news, Hsiang reports that “the International Go Federation (IGF) held a special Board Meeting today (12/9). I invited (AGA Board member) Andy Okun (in dark blue shirt in photo below) as an observer. Many things were discussed, including an IGF proposal that will fund two projects in the Americas: the AGA’s plan for an international go symposium and the Iberoamerican Go Federation’s plan to start a pilot project teaching go in Venezuela schools.  This proposal now moves forward to IMSA.”  The AGA’s plan to establish a pro system was met with great enthusiasm and encouragement, Hsiang reports. The IGF is starting to plan the next round of the SportAccord World Mind Games that will now be featured for at least five years.  Hsiang and Yuki Shigeno will again represent the IGF in negotiations with SportAccord.  Brunei will be next IGF member, with Kazistan likely to follow. The Ing Foundation will apply to become a new Association Member of IGF; its president, Mr. Ying Ming-haw, has been invited to become an at-large Director of the IGF.  WAGC 2012 will be held in Guangzhou, May 11-18, and the 2012 WAGC 2013 will be held in Japan, with site selection and date to be announced in May 2012.  There is still no site contract for World Mind Sports Games II in 2012 and the event is unlikely to take place.
photos: US team player Jie Li (top right); team captains (bottom left); photos courtesy Ranka Online.

SportAccord World Mind Games Kick Off Friday, 12/9

Thursday December 8, 2011

Preparations for the first edition of the SportAccord World Mind Games are in full swing, reports Thomas Hsiang. The Games kick off on Friday, December 9 and “There will be broadcast of events everyday during the tournament on the internet,” Hsiang tells the E-Journal.  The IGF’s Ranka Online will also be providing coverage and the EJ will relay highlights. The go broadcast is from 1500 to 1600 Beijing time (US EST 0200 to 0300) and can be watched live on the SportAccord Youtube Channel or on the IMSA channel. The go event schedule: Team Tournament, December 9, 10, 11, 13, 14; Pair Tournament, December 15, 16; off day, December 12.

In the team event, US will play against:  Japan (12/9); Korea (12/10); EU (12/11); Chinese Taipei (12/13); China (12/14). The US playing order is Mingjiu Jiang, Jie Li, Andy Liu, Kevin Huang, Yun Feng. The EU’s schedule: China (12/9); Japan (12/10); US (12/11); Korea (12/13); Chinese Taipei (12/14). The EU playing order is Catalin Taranu, Christian Pop, Cornel Burzo, Jan Simara, Vanessa Wong.

Registration Opens for New SportAccord World Mind Games Online Tournament

Sunday September 18, 2011

Want to win a free trip to the SportAccord World Mind Games in Beijing this December? Enter the brand-new SportAccord World Mind Games Online Tournament for your chance at the trip! Registration is now open for the tournament, which will be held on the Internet Go Server (IGS) under the auspices of SportAccord, supported by Samsung and Rado and organized by the International Go Federation and Pandanet. The winner of this all-amateur event will be invited to observe the first SportAccord World Mind Games (SAWMG), scheduled for December 8-17 in Beijing (RANKA online will present reports and up-to-date news from the venue on game results and other items). SportAccord will provide an SAWMG entry ticket, round-trip airfare, local transportation and accommodations. In addition, the Online Tournament winner will be presented with a medal during the SAWMG official banquet. Registrants must be amateurs and members of an association affiliated with the IGF (or recognized by such an association), must be able to communicate in English by email, and must play all tournament games on IGS. The tournament will run from early October to mid November. Click here for application information and forms.

YOUR MOVE: Congress Ratings?

Tuesday August 23, 2011

“When will the ratings be updated?” wonders Andreas. “Looks like the first two rounds of the main Congress tournament are in there, but nothing after Wednesday, none of the Self-Paired.”
In general, tournaments are rated within a week of our receiving the tournament results report from the tournament director.  From time to time there are delays as we have to clarify some of the results with the tournament directors…its very easy to transpose a number in a players AGA ID, for instance.  Please rest assured that we will rate the tournaments as quickly as possible.
– Jonathan M Bresler, AGA Ratings Coordinator
photo: at the 2011 U.S. Open in Santa Barbara, CA; photo by Chris Garlock

U.S. Go Congress EJ Team Recognition

Monday August 15, 2011

As this year’s U.S. Go Congress drew to a close, someone suggested to me that perhaps the E-Journal team is doing our job a bit too well and that some folks are staying home from the Congress because our coverage provides such a great experience of this annual event. Though I don’t think that’s the case – the coverage seems to inspire even more folks to want to be there in person — I took this as high praise for our extensive Congress coverage, which is only possible through the dedication, commitment and hard work of the entire EJ team.

This year we broadcast top-board games from five major events, including the North American Masters, the brand-new Strong Player’s Open, the U.S. Open, the Redmond Cup Senior and Junior Divisions and the North American Pair Go Tournament.

All told, we broadcast and posted 54 top-board game records, 23 pro game reviews, as well as reports and photos from a number of other Congress events. Click here for all the crosstabs and game commentaries and all the news and photos.

We’re fortunate to have an experienced crew as the core of the EJ Congress team, starting with EJ Congress Team Assistant Manager Todd Heidenreich (who did double-duty as Pair Go TD) and IT Manager/Beverage Wrangler Steve Colburn, who keep our recording team well-supplied and running smoothly no matter what the crisis of the day might be.

The always stylish KGS Admin Akane Negishi – who provided key pro relation support — was joined on-site by Greg Wright and was backed up by the usual crew of ever-helpful KGS admins, including Matthew Heymering, Mef, and FlameBlade, with Bill Shubert’s support.

Chris Burg, Richard Dolen and Dennis Wheeler anchored the recording/broadcasting teams for both the U.S. Open each morning and the North American Masters each night; Chris is the master of play-by-play reporting, Richard has been playing longer than the rest of the team combined and Dennis is the unflappable zen master of the team.

Our other game recorders/broadcasters included Gordon Castanza, Calvin Clark, Jim Hlavka, John Mangual, Peter Martin, Michael Scudder, Daniel Short, Solomon Smilack (who also helped with some of the pro game commentaries this year), Phil Straus & Marc Willerth. Todd Blatt was once again our Simulcast Broadcaster for the nightly NAMT pro game commentaries and this year launched the “ToddCam” which provided some unusually-entertaining views of the top boards.

Brian Allen and Phil Straus were our photographers this year, and deserve special recognition and appreciation for matching this year’s gorgeous location with such wonderful images of the Congress.

EJ Youth Editor Paul Barchilon once again did our youth reporting and youth game recording/broadcast coordination and Roy Laird was our roving reporter.

There are lots of prizes given out each year at the Congress, but as far as we’re concerned, none are as well-earned as the distinctive black EJ caps awarded to the hardest-working folks there: Congress Directors Lisa Scott and Andrew Jackson (in photo at left), and U.S. Open/NAMT/Strong Player’s Open Tournament Directors Karoline Burrall and Mike Malveaux, who were ably assisted by Todd Blatt, Jasmine Yan & Jesy Feliccia.

Finally, we owe a huge debt of gratitude to the professional go players who took the time to provide us with such great live game commentaries: Michael Redmond 9P, Seo Neong-Wook 9P, Wang Qun 8P, Mingjiu Jiang 7P, Maeda Ryo 6P, Hajin Lee 3P, Jennie Shen 2P, and Li Ting 1P.

It was a real joy and pleasure to work with such an accomplished team, and I’m hugely proud of how each member of the team helped bring the U.S. Congress – American go’s biggest and brightest event of the year — to thousands of go fans around the world.

I’m already looking forward to next year in North Carolina!

- Chris Garlock, EJ Congress Team Managing Editor

top photo by Phil Straus/Brian Allen; bottom photo by Phil Straus

Categories: U.S. Go Congress
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Appreciation for AGA Lifetime Members

Wednesday August 10, 2011

American Go Association Board Chairman Andy Okun and None Redmond hosted lifetime AGA members at a special appreciation luncheon on Tuesday, August 2 at a restaurant in Santa Barbara, CA. “Our thanks to these generous visionaries who are thinking many moves into the future,” Okun said.
Top row (left to right): Andy Okun/Mike Lash, Darrell Malick, Mark Fraser, Steffen Kurz/Lee Anne Bowie,  Haskell Small, Cynthia Gaty
Bottom row (l-r): Yoko Ohashi/group shot, None Redmond, Terry Benson, Phil Straus/Eric Jankowski
- photos by Phil Straus (except Straus by Brian Allen); collage by Chris Garlock

Categories: U.S. Go Congress
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Brian’s Photos: Selected 2011 U.S. Go Congress Awards

Tuesday August 9, 2011


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Above left: Youth All Stars Tournament Award, with TD Paul Barchilon cheering them on
Top right: Korean Baduk Association Award Winners, 1 Dan to 6 Dan
Bottom right: Korean Baduk Association Award winner, 2 Dan
photos by Brian Allen

Categories: U.S. Go Congress
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Yongfe Ge Wins U.S. Open; Mingming Yin Wins Strong Players Open

Monday August 8, 2011

Yongfei Ge 7d (left) won the 2011 U.S. Open, edging out ZhaoNian Chen 7d and ZiYang Hu 7d, who were also 5-1. Ge – who defeated pros ZiYang Hu 1P and Mingming Yin 1P (right) — collected $2,000 for the title while Chen won $1,000 and Hu $500. Yin, who came in fourth in the Open, won the Strong Player Open, winning $500, with Gangshen Shi in second ($400) and Cathy Li third ($300). Other top winners in the U.S. Open were Mengchen Zhang (5th) and Tianyu (Bill) Lin (6th); other top winners in the Strong Player’s Open were Tianyu Lin (fourth) and Hugh Zhang (5th).

Categories: U.S. Go Congress
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Brian’s Go Photos: Memories of the Santa Barbara Go Congress

Monday August 8, 2011

After 9 months of cool cloudy weather in Seattle, this photographer greatly enjoyed the clear skies and mild temperatures of the Santa Barbara Go Congress.  People were playing go everywhere, and a trip to the nearby beaches was always refreshing.  -report/photo by Brian Allen

Categories: U.S. Go Congress
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