American Go E-Journal » Events/Tournaments

Meet the 2017 Redmond Cup Finalists

Wednesday August 2, 2017

After a preliminary tournament spanning nearly three months, Muzhen Ai 7d and Matthew Cheng 5d emerged at the top of the pack in the Senior (13-17) and Junior (12 and under) divisions respectively to compete in their first Redmond Cup Finals. However, they will face stiff competition against 4-time champion Aaron Ye 7d and 2-time champion Ary Cheng 6d, who placed second in their respective divisions. The first round of the best-of-3 Finals will take place at the 2017 US Go Congress on August 6th, with live commentary for the Senior Division by Eric Lui 1p and Julie Burrall 1d on the AGA Youtube channel. Learn more about the young finalists below:

Screen Shot 2017-08-02 at 3.45.10 PM17-year old Muzhen “Alan” Ai (at left) is from Dallas, Texas and is looking for his first Redmond Cup title after barely failing to qualify for the Finals last year. Despite sweeping the preliminaries 6-0, Ai told the EJ that he was “surprised to have made the finals after not studying go for a long time.” Ai started playing go at the age of 5 in Hebei, China after his mother accidentally took him to the wrong room of an apartment, which just so happened to be a go classroom. Studying with Zhao Yuhong 5p, Ai managed to achieve 5 dan in 3 years after barely passing the promotion tournament. On the last day of the tournament, he recalls, “I left early after losing my last game and thought I had no chance to get to 5 dan. When my mom was blaming me, she received a phone call from a teacher and was told that I was the last one on the promotion list.” Having moved to the US in 2015, Ai says that he “regrets not putting enough effort into studying go when he was little” but looks forward to playing some good games in the Finals.

Screen Shot 2017-08-02 at 3.44.57 PM15-year old Aaron Ye (at right) from Cupertino, California is a familiar face in the Redmond Cup, having won the Junior division title four times in a row from 2011-2014. However, this is his first Finals in the Senior Division, and he is looking to achieve the honorary title of Redmond Meijin, which is granted to those who win the Redmond Cup at least 5 times. So far, this has only been achieved by Eric Lui 1p in 2001 and Curtis Tang 8d in 2010. Going 5-1 in the preliminaries, Ye told the EJ that he is happy to have made the Finals, and would like to thank the AGF and the volunteers who run the tournament every year for so many years. In addition, he looks forward to having fun in San Diego with his go friends. When Ye was 5 years old, he stumbled upon go when a family friend’s son happened to have an extra spot in a group lesson. He currently studies with Myungwan Kim 9p and while he barely has time to play games due to schoolwork, he watches pro games while doing homework to keep himself in shape. Outside of go, Ye enjoys cooking and enjoying good food.

Screen Shot 2017-08-02 at 3.44.36 PM10-year old Matthew Cheng (at left) is from San Jose, California. He is qualifying for the second time this year, but only competing for the first.  Last year he was busy attending the World Youth Go Championships as the US Junior representative and had to cede his spot in the Redmond.  Matthew started playing go at the age of 5, and first learned by watching Youtube videos and then attending a local go class. In addition to learning from several teachers in the past (currently he studies by himself over the internet), Matthew also plays on IGS/KGS, does tsumego often, and reads many Chinese and English go books. Outside of go, Matthew also enjoys playing table tennis.

Screen Shot 2017-08-02 at 3.44.25 PM11-year old Ary Cheng (at right – no relation to Matthew) is from Sunnyvale, California and is the only returning finalist from last year’s tournament. Having held the Junior title for the last two years in a row, Ary is looking to defend his title once again. Ary started playing go at the age of 6 after attending a group lesson in a Chinese school, and has never stopped playing since. Currently, he is studying with Mingjiu Jiang 7p and practices by playing on IGS and doing life and death problems. Outside of go, Ary also enjoys playing table tennis.

The Redmond Cup is a premier youth tournament named after Michael Redmond 9p for dan players under the age of 18. Players compete in an online preliminary tournament in April to determine two finalists in both a Junior (under 13) and Senior (under 18) division. Finalists are given a free trip to the US Go Congress to compete in a best-of-three finals. - Justin Teng, AGA Youth Coordinator

 

 

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2017 US Go Congress preview

Saturday July 29, 2017

With just a week left before the 33rd US Go Congress kicks off next Saturday at the Town and Country Resort in San Diego, California, the schedule for the week-long event is finally complete, reports Congress Co-Director Ted Terpstra. Currently there are 531 registered attendees including 26 professional go players. 2017.07.29_SD-airport-stones

There will be a ten-session Go Teachers’ Workshop for those wanting to learn the optimal ways of teaching go in the classroom. Many of the teachers’ session will be given by Myungwan Kim, 9P. Coordinating the workshop is Jonathan Hop <yithril@gmail.com>.

For young very-strong players, there will be a 10-session workshop sponsored and run by the Nihon-Kiin professionals: Yashashiro, 9P and Tsuruta 4P. Coordinating the very-strong players workshop is Ihan Lui <ihan.lui@gocongress.org>.

Each afternoon and evening after the US Open rounds (Sunday-Friday, except Wednesday), there will be lectures and game analysis by the more than 20 professional players from around the world. There will be sessions for the best players as well as the new players who are starting their climb to the top.

A special set of go classes will be given by European go teacher, In-seong Hwang <admin@yunguseng.com>. His lecture topics include Let’s get the Go-Avengers (includes Thor vs Hulk, Iron Man vs Black Widow and Captain America vs Nick Fury), Let’s make Go Easier and AlphaGo Games, the Future of Go.

“The summer in San Diego has been pleasant with almost no rain,” says Terpstra. The five-day forecast is for high temperatures of 77, 76, 77, 77, and 77 degrees, “Perfect for swimming in one of the three swimming pools at the Town and Country Resort. It should be a fine US Go Congress.”

photo: large white go stones embedded in the wall of the building next to the car rental facility at the San Diego Airport; photo by Ted Terpstra

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Cotsen Open registration now open

Thursday June 29, 2017

Registration for the 2017 Cotsen Open is now open. The tournament is set for October 21-22 at the Korean Cultural Center in Los Angeles. “As 2017.06.28_2016-cotsenalways, you get your registration fee back if you show up to both days, lunch is provided by Eric, and masseuses are available,” reports Tournament Organizer Christopher Saenz. “We are also working on getting a screening of the Surrounding Game.”
photo: at the 2016 Cotsen Open; photo by Chris Garlock

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Japanese delegation to conduct workshop at 2017 US Go Congress

Wednesday June 28, 2017

There will be a 5-day go workshop conducted by the Japanese delegation to the 2017 US Go Congress in San Diego. The Nihon Ki-in is sending Yamashiro Hiroshi 9p (vice chairman of the Nihon Ki-in, director of INAF) and Tsuruta Kazushi 4p to work with 7-10 very strong US and Canadian attendees at the Congress. The target audience are the under-thirty (U30-years-old) North American players ranked 6 dan and above, including AGA professionals.

Either Yamashiro or Tsuruta will play a game against one of the attendees from 1-3 p.m. (SMTThF). Then from 3-4:30 p.m., there will be a game analysis by both Yamashiro and Tsuruta for all workshop attendees.

To register for the workshop, Congress attendees should send an email to the Congress professional coordinator, I-han Lui  ihan.lui@gocongress.org.  If the number of requests becomes too large, priority will be given, in order, to AGA pros, U20 amateurs, and higher-ranked amateurs.

Submitted by Ted Terpstra, Co-Director 2017 US Go Congress – San Diego

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Go Congress Close to Running Out of Rooms at the Resort

Friday June 23, 2017

When the 2017 US Go Congress last year signed its contract with the Town and Country Resort, the committee thought that 200 guaranteed rooms a night was being optimistic, reports Congress Co-Director Ted Terpstra. Now, with more than a month to go before the August 5 arrival date, there are only 25 rooms left at the contracted prices of $135 plus fees and taxes for Garden rooms and $170 for the Royal Palm Tower rooms, respectively.  (These prices are for one or two people in a room; it’s slightly more to have a third or fourth adult in the room. Children are free if they are third or fourth in the room.) When the 25 rooms are booked, rooms the hotel’s available rooms will move to the going public rate, currently $190 for a Garden Room, $198 for a Regency Tower Room and $246 for a royal Palm Tower Room, plus taxes and fees.  If any of the 200 Congress contracted rooms are not booked by July 1, the Congress will have to return them to the hotel’s inventory for letting out at current rates.  June 30 is also the end of the second early bird period. On July 1, registration will go up by $50 and meal plans costs will be increased by about $100 for the breakfast, lunch and dinner plan.  Act now!

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MLily: Ryan Li 1p Vs. Chen Yaoye 9p in Second Round; AGA Broadcasts

Monday June 19, 2017

2016.04.06_Ryan-Li-1st_IEMG_-Feb-27-2016-11-038China Korean Tengen 2013The AGA Broadcast team will provide coverage of two games from Round 2 of the 3rd Lily Cup tomorrow, June 20th, starting at 10:30 p.m. PDT (UTC-7), with commentary by Jennie Shen 2p. Our very own Ryan Li 1p, winning yesterday against Cheng Honghao 2p, now faces world champ Chen Yaoye 9p. Elsewhere in the tournament, Wang Haoyang 6p scored an upset win against Shin Jinseo, the rising Korean phenom, which wins him the chance to play DeepZenGo in round 2.

Join us at http://www.youtube.com/c/usgoweb/live or http://twitch.tv/usgoweb !

 

kf_zen_01The MLily cup is the first traditional tournament in which AI players are seeded just as their human counterparts, and it may also be the last, with Tygem China News reporting that no future Chinese tournaments will allow AI entrants.

 
 
 

Here is Ryan Li’s monster 363(!) move 1st round win over Cheng Honghao 2p:

[link]

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Go Congress registration tops 450

Sunday June 18, 2017

More than 450 attendees have already registered for this year’s US Go Congress, set for August 5-13 in San Diego at the Town and Country2017.06.18_2016-congress-garlock-IMG_0633 Resort. So far eleven North American-based professional go players have accepted invitations to attend, including Myungwan Kim 9P, Yilun Yang 7P, Mingjiu Jiang 7P, Cathy Li 1P, Shirley Lin 1P, Jennie Shen 2P, Stephanie Yin 1P, Eric Lui 1P, Ryan Li 1P, Andy Liu 1P and William Shi 1P. “Every afternoon and evening during the Congress — except Wednesday which is a day for sight-seeing — these pros will be lecturing, playing simultaneous exhibitions and analyzing Go Congress players’ games,” reports Congress Co-Director Ted Terpstra. “Multiple sessions will be going on at once, so it may be difficult to go to all of the events that one would like. The complete schedule will be released as soon as it is ready.” In addition to all of the pro events, will be a five-day workshop by noted European-based go teacher In-seong Hwang. Also, foreign professional go players from China, Japan and Korea will be coming to the Congress to teach. More details on them and their lectures will be forthcoming. All of these sessions are included in the price of Congress registration.
photo: main playing area at the 2016 US Go Congress; photo by Chris Garlock

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WAGC Update: China wins WAGC; US’ Danny Ko in 4th

Thursday June 8, 2017

by Thomas Hsiang, special correspondent to the E-Journal2017.06.07_ Lai Yucheng (Taiwan), Bai Baoxiang (China), Lee Sangbin (Korea)
In the WAGC’s 7th round, the top three tables featured China vs. Russia, Japan vs. DPR Korea, and Taiwan vs. Korea.  China came in at 6-0 and the other were at 5-1.  Bai Baoxiang had no problem with Dmitry Surin; North Korea played brilliantly to defeat Sakamoto Shusaku of Japan; then Taiwan’s Lai Yucheng surprised most people with an upset over Korean Lee Sangbin.  Lee had played a lot of the new “AlphaGo style” moves in this tournament, but for this game his “alpha-like” 4-4 attachment against B’s 3-4 and ogeima enclosure actually led to a very bad early result that he could not recover.  After that, Bai vs Lai in round 8 became a fight for the championship. Click here for complete results.
Bai played a very calm game in round 8, playing solidly and keeping the game close; then pulled ahead in the end game to win the championship.  Lai Yucheng dropped to third.  The second table featured a north-south all-Korean game.  Ri JinUng played very well and led most of the game.  However, in the end game, he repeatedly made errors – missing sente moves, etc – to give away the game by 0.5 point.  Ri dropped from 2nd to 6th due to the loss, a game he will not forget for a long time.  South Korea 2017.06.07_NA WAGCmoved up to second place.  In fourth place was the US’ own Danny Ko, who played solidly in his late-round games.  Japan took fifth after defeating the Czech Republic.  From 7th to 10th are, in order, Romania, Hong Kong, Russia, and Czechia.  Canadian Gong Yujie placed 15th, while Mexico’s Emil Garcia was 17th after winning 5 games in the tournament – a Mexican record in this tournament!
Thus concludes another successful chapter of this unique international amateur go event.  Guiyang City offered great hospitality and a beautiful setting.  Next year’s WAGC will move to Tokyo and back to the May schedule (May 2-9, 2018).  In 2019, the 40th WAGC will be held in Matsue City of Shimane prefecture.  In 2020, WAGC moves to Vladivostok, the Far East Russian seaport, assuming the sponsor agrees to the schedule.
photo (top, l-r) Lai Yucheng (Taiwan), Bai Baoxiang (China), Lee Sangbin (Korea); (bottom, l-r): Emil Garcia (Mexico), Danny Ko and Thomas Hsiang (US), Yujie Gong (Canada).
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WAGC Update: Only China remains undefeated

Tuesday June 6, 2017

by Thomas Hsiang, special correspondent to the E-Journal2017.06.07-wagc-hq

The morning’s round 5 was highlighted by an exciting game between China and DPR Korea, won by China with the smallest margin of 0.5 point.  US rep Danny Ko lost to Cornel Burzo and fell to the 2-loss group.  Japan’s Sakata Shusaku has been playing well since he lost in the second round.  He met Hong Kong’s Chan Naisan and played a strong game from the start, giving his opponent no real chance of coming back.

In the afternoon, the top game was China vs. Korea. Because of the large number of spectators, the playing area had to be screened off by a “chair wall”.  The game lasted well after all other games had finished and remained close.  But in the end, Korea made a yose mistake and had to resign.  Japan defeated Romania and sent Burzo to two losses.  Russia’s veteran Dmitry Surin defeated Czech Lukas Podpera to remain the only 1-loss Western player.  Danny Ko played Thailand’s Vorawat Tanapatsopol and fell behind by quite a bit late in the game and had also entered his last period of 30-second byo-yomi. But Ko played a well-designed whole-board yose trap to overtake his opponent.  When his opponent resigned, Danny Ko had played his last sixty or so moves within the last byo-yomi period.
Entering the last two rounds tomorrow, the picture is clearer.  Having won all his games, China’s Bai Baoxiang has the championship in his control.  There are five countries at one-loss: Japan, Korea, DPR Korea, Taiwan, and Russia.  These six will play each other in round 7: China vs. Russia, Korean vs. Taiwan, and Japan vs. DPR Korea.

photo: WAGC headquarters hotel; Guiyang Sheraton set next to a large Ming-dynasty temple
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WAGC Day 2 Report: China, South Korea, and North Korea undefeated after 4 rounds

Monday June 5, 2017

by Thomas Hsiang, special correspondent to the E-JournalFor day 2 of the 38th World Amateur Go Championship, there were no major surprises at the top tables.  Round 3 in the morning saw US and Russia lose to China and North Korea respectively; Thailand lose to Czech; Austria lose to Hong Kong; and France lose to South Korea.  The Czech player Lukas Podpera caught a lot of attention after he beat Lai Yucheng from Taiwan yesterday.  In round 3 he played a strong game against the Thai representative Vorawat Tanapatsopol, a Go teacher from Bangkok, and won.  2017.06.05_wagc-Japan-Viet Nam

There were a number of strong games in round 4.  At the end, only three undefeated players remain – China, South Korea, and North Korea.  The round started with an exciting game between Hong Kong’s Chan Naisan and South Korean Lee Sangbin.  “Lee is just too strong”, sighed Chan after losing a well-fought game.  Lukas Podpera lost by just 0.5 point to North Korean Ri Jin-Ung (whose name was mis-spelled in yesterday’s report).  Anoother Go teacher, Romanian Cornel Burzo lost to China in a game that finished very late and attracted many Chinese Go reporters. The match between Japan’s Sakamoto Shusaku and Vietnam’s 12-year old Vo Duy Minh (right) also attracted a lot of media attention, although the result was hardly surprising.  Danny Ko recovered to defeat the player from Macao.
For round 5 on Tuesday, the top games will be China vs. North Korea, Finland vs. South Korea, Japan vs. Hong Kong, and US vs. Romania.
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