California’s Cupertino High School became the champion of the open division, after 4 hard fought rounds, reports American Go Honor Society President Yunxuan Li. “This year’s school team tournament (STT) drew 13 teams from every part of the country consisting of all kinds of educational institutions,” says Li. “The STT is an annual tournament for school aged kids to compete as a team against teams from other schools. It is a wonderful opportunity to meet young go lovers from other schools. Many participants enjoyed the competitive and friendly atmosphere of the STT. Want to be the next winner of the biggest youth team tournament? Tune in for our event next year!” The top two teams won a full scholarship to the AGA Go Camp, winners in all brackets are receiving cash prizes, t-shirts, and trophies as well – courtesy of the the AGA and the AGF. For a complete list of winners, click here. -Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor. Photo: The Haze Middle School Team, from Hikaru no Go, © 1998 Yumi Hotta and Takeshi Obata/Shueisha Inc.
American Go E-Journal » Go News
Monday April 18, 2016
Saturday April 16, 2016
Andy Liu 1p won his next Sankei Cup game against amateur Shingo Ono in Osaka Saturday. Liu, taking white with no komi, won by six by taking a large central territory. The win puts him in a game today with Murakawa Daisuke 8p, among whose accomplishments are winning the 62nd Oza and two previous Sankei Cups. The game will be 12:30 p.m. Sunday Japan time, evening or night in the US. The broadcast can be found at http://kansaikiin.jp/subpage/live.html.
Friday April 15, 2016
Eric Lui 1p and Andy Liu 1p are headed to Shanghai to play in the opening rounds of the 8th Ing Pro Cup. The Ing Foundation’s quadrennial tournament is considered one of the most prestigious international titles in the go world, with a top prize of more than $400,000. The opening ceremony is on April 19 and the first game on April 20. The EJ will update with details about broadcasts from the tournament. Lui and Liu won the representation spots in an online qualifier in January against Feng Yun 9p and Yang Huiren 1p.
Andy Liu is travelling to Shanghai by way of Osaka, Japan, for the next round of the Sankei Cup. Liu pleased his American fans last fall by winning all three of his games against Japanese pros in the Sankei Cup prelim. He will play on April 16 at 12:30 Japanese time against amateur player Shingo Ono. If he wins, there will be another game the following day at 12:30 again. According to the Kansai Kiin, the games can be watched online here.
Thursday April 14, 2016
The AGA Summer Go Camp will be held from July 3 to July 9 at YMCA Camp Campbell Gard in Hamilton, OH (45 minutes South of Dayton). Camp directors Nano Rivera and Frank Luo invite campers of all skill levels, between the ages of 8 and 18 to join them for a week of go-playing and fun. Professional instruction, and fun outdoor activities, will both be on the schedule. Youth who played in the NAKC or the Redmond Cup are eligible for a $400 scholarship, and need-based scholarships of up to $250 are also available. For more information on the latest camp-related news, and to download the (soon to be available) registration forms, please visit the camp website. Any questions can be e-mailed to Nano Rivera at firstname.lastname@example.org. Photo: Campers trying their hand at archery at last year’s Go Camp.
Monday April 11, 2016
Monday April 11, 2016
Registration is now open for the American Yunguseng Dojang 15th season of on-line classes. Taught by former Korean insei and EGF 8-dan Inseong Hwang, the program each month offers members five games of league play, three lectures of about an hour each on topics such as opening theory, local techniques, and positional evaluation, and a weekly highlights video. The American program began in January 2014 with three six player leagues. The season just concluded had seven six player leagues. There are video reviews of all league games available on-line.
Starting in the 15th season, the winner of the top league each month will get that month free. As of the moment there are 37 registered players for the 15th season, which kicks off April 25. “If you are looking for a training program to sharpen your game, this is something for you to check out,” suggests Bob Gilman.
- photo: AYD members at the 2015 US Go Congress
Monday April 11, 2016
The American Go Foundation (AGF) is offering $200 youth scholarships to this year’s US Go Congress. Interested youth must write an essay on why they want to go; the application deadline is May 31st. Twenty-five scholarships are available, and up to 15 awardees will be selected by June 1. Five scholarships are available to residents of Canada or Mexico. Applications received after May 31st will be approved on a space available basis. The scholarships are available for US youth who are under 18. Youth who competed in either the NAKC or the Redmond Cup are eligible for an additional $200 scholarship, for $400 total. For more information, and to apply, click here. - Story and photo by Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor. Photo: The Youth Team Tournament is one of the many activities in the Youth Room at Congress.
Saturday April 9, 2016
Google DeepMind team members Aja Huang 7d and Hui Fan 2P have just confirmed that they’ll attend this year’s US Go Congress in Boston. “This is an exciting opportunity for the American go community to meet some of the team behind AlphaGo, which attracted global attention to go,” said Congress Director Walther Chen. The Congress runs July 30-August 7; click here for details. Dr. Huang (right), who was seen by millions worldwide last month playing for AlphaGo against Lee Sedol 9P, will give the keynote speech — together with European champion Hui Fan 2p — at the Congress opening ceremony on July 30. They’ll also attend a “Computer Go Afternoon” session on August 4. In other Congress updates, the attendance of the following professional players have been confirmed: Myungwan Kim 9P, An Yan 7P, Hajin Lee 3P, Yi Tang 2P and Shuang Yang 2P.
- Chun Sun
Saturday April 9, 2016
Nominations for the American Go Foundation’s Teacher of the Year award are due by May 8th. Presented each year at the U.S. Go Congress, the award recognizes an outstanding American teacher. The winner will receive an all expenses paid trip to the US Go Congress. To be eligible, a teacher must be a member of the AGA, have been teaching go to children for at least two hours a week (during the school year) for two years, have started a go club or organization for youth, and have helped their students enter appropriate tournaments, if possible. If you would like to nominate someone for this award, including yourself, e-mail email@example.com. Nominations are due by May 8th and should include a description of the teacher’s activities, how long they have been teaching, and how many students attend their program. - Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor. Photo: Xinming Simon Guo, 2015 AGF Teacher of the Year, working with students in Chicago. Read more about Guo’s work here.
Wednesday April 6, 2016
It’s unusually nice out today*. As I stroll down my neighborhood and head towards the park, the sun’s rays hit me square in the back, right between the shoulder blades. The tingling warmth spreads all the way down and brings feeling to my toes…
It’s midnight in Huai-An, China, the site of the inaugural IMSA Elite Mind Games 2016. After a thirty-hour ordeal that included a cab ride of record-breaking speed between Shanghai’s international and domestic airports followed by a half-day layover, I arrived at the New Century Grand Hotel, a majestic venue secluded from downtown and just about everything else.
I’m looking around for a familiar face. There are none, to my slight disappointment mixed with relief, since at this point I’m rather unsure in my ability to form a coherent thought, let alone communicate in words. I stumble inside the luxurious living quarters on the eighth floor (surely a sign of good things to come), dragging the trusty luggage that has been with me to the ends of the earth. I check my phone for messages, and there it is, in flawless pinyin, ‘ming tian jian’, meaning ‘see you tomorrow’. Just for a moment, the fatigue melts away and my mind is clear and sharp.
The next morning at the dining hall I’m greeted by Ryan Li and Sarah Yu, the Canadian half of our North American Go Dream Team led by Mingjiu Jiang on the first board and Andy Okun, AGA president extraordinaire, as team leader. With players from around the world representing the various disciplines (Go, Chess, Draughts, Bridge, and Xiangqi), it’s a truly international event, complete with a security checkpoint and metal detectors located at the entrances to each of the playing areas.
“If the situation is bad, keep your head up and wait for your opponent to make a mistake.” Mingjiu chuckled slightly, motioning with his fork towards the air. It was lunch the next day and he was giving us some last-minute advice before we were set to take on Korea in the Men’s Team competition. We nodded solemnly in unison, Ryan and me, carefully avoiding each other’s gaze to prevent the inevitable burst of laughter. Despite arriving after midnight and missing the opening ceremony, Mingjiu appeared in good spirits, greeting anyone he recognized with a hearty clap on the shoulder. With so many varied and delicious desserts up for grabs, it was all I could do to resist overindulging myself right before the game. I reluctantly bade farewell to the sublime chocolate cake, looking back one last time before taking the long walk to the battlefield with the others, each of us lost in our own thoughts.
Both Korea and China fielded teams of some of the world’s top players. While we were unable to take a game from either country, we scored a win against Japan in a game where Ryan (right) fully showcased his fighting skills to defeat one of Japan’s up-and-coming young professionals. Against the Taiwanese team there were also good chances to win, although their superior experience prevailed in the end. After consecutive defeats, we managed to regain some pride with a victory over Europe. Overall, we were still somewhat disappointed, but there were moments during my own games when I felt that my opponents were not as strong as I imagined, and I was not as weak. With steady, determined effort, I wholeheartedly believe that in the foreseeable future the West will be competitive on the international stage.
After the conclusion of the Men’s Team and Women’s Individual events, the Pair Go knockout in which Ryan and Sarah participated took place. I wandered into the game review room during the final round, and, whilst standing around awkwardly, was invited by one of the top Taiwanese players, Chen Shiyuan 9p, to take a seat alongside him and Zhou Junxun 9p as they analyzed their compatriots’ game. Being able to ask them questions when I didn’t understand something was a real treat. Even after just a couple of hours, I felt like I had gotten stronger. These are the moments that every go player lives for.
I’m on the trail now, picking up speed as I navigate the winding path through the riverbend. When I reach the top of the hill, I’m breathing hard and my jet-lagged legs are starting to cry out in protest. In just a few days it’ll be roughly twenty degrees cooler again for a while before the warmth finally returns for good. But for now, on the cusp of spring, I’ll take one more lap around the baseball field, one more breath of the crisp air, enjoying the moment while it lasts, wishing for one more day in sunny Huai-An, and my very own copy of AlphaGo.
*The IMSA Elite Mind Games were held in early March and Eric sent in this report a few weeks ago; we apologize for the delay in publication. Click here for the E-Journal’s previous reports on the IMSA. Team photo (l-r): Mingjiu Jiang, Sarah Yu, Andy Okun, Eric Lui, Ryan Li