American Go E-Journal » Go News

Euro Go Congress Underway in France

Sunday July 24, 2011

The Zhuyeqing Tea European Go Congress started last Saturday in Bordeaux, France. You can follow the EGC games live on EuroGoTV1 and IGS. The EGC main tournament started Sunday and can also be followed on KGS. Click here for the complete schedule.

Categories: Europe
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What’s Your “Shusaku Number?”

Sunday July 24, 2011

Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon is a trivia game based on the concept of the small world phenomenon and rests on the assumption that any individual can be linked through his or her film roles to actor Kevin Bacon within six steps. Now there’s the Shusaku number, which represents the “distance” between a go player and Honinbo Shusaku, measured in go opponents.

Kuwahara Shusaku  (1829-1862) was the strongest player of Japan’s “Edo” period, a “golden age of go” where four “houses” devoted themselves to winning the honor of playing in the “Castle Games” for the Emperor. The author of the most famous move in go history – the so-called “ear-reddening move” – Shusaku once famously responded, when asked the result of a game, “I had black.”  (The komi system was still more than fifty years in future.) He won nineteen consecutive games over a thirteen-year period, an unparalleled achievement, before dying of cholera at age 33. To equal this achievement today, a player would have to win every game on white by at least eight points. The ideas Shusaku left behind, especially the so-called “Shusaku opening,” formed the foundation of go theory for the next hundred years.

How closely are you connected to Shusaku? Borrowing from the world of mathematics, where authors proudly calculate their “Erdos number”, some go players enjoy figuring out their “Shusaku number,” a series of games leading back to the historic figure. For instance, The E-Journal’s erstwhile translator Bob McGuigan’s “Shusaku number” is four, a very respectable achievement for an amateur player. McGuigan once played a game with Sumiko Shiratori 5P, who in turn once played Fumiko Kita 6P, an important figure in the Hoensha, forerunner of today’s Nihon Kiin. Ms. Kita in turn once played Hoensha founder Honinbo Shuho, Shusaku’s unlucky opponent in four “Castle Games.” That’s a three-player link, so Bob is a four. (Shusaku’s “Shusaku number” is of course zero.) If you have ever played Bob, you are a five.  Click here to learn how to trace your “go lineage” to the great master.  When you’ve got that all figured out you can take it to the next level, and try to figure out yourWinning Shusaku Number,” where you have to trace a series of victories all the way back to someone who beat Shusaku.  Handicap wins on black don’t count, so good luck with that . . .
- Roy Laird

Categories: U.S./North America
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Yamashita Keigo Wins 66th Honinbo

Saturday July 23, 2011

Yamashita Keigo 9P has won the 66th Honinbo in Japan, after a hard-fought seven game match with Hane Naoki 9P. Yamashita won the first three games in the final, but Hane fought back to win the next three. This took the Honinbo to a 7th game decider. Hane (playing black) seemed to have the advantage after the first 100 moves and it looked as though he would win the title. However, Yamashita met Hane’s move 115 with strong resistance and the game quickly became complicated. As the dust settled it was clear that white was ahead, and Yamashita won the game by 4.5 points. This is Yamashita’s first successful defense of the Honinbo, which he won from Hane Naoki in 2010.

E-Journal readers may also be interested in An Younggil’s commentary of the Honinbo game.

- David Ormerod; based on his original report: Yamashita Keigo defends his title in 66th Honinbo at Go Game Guru. Photo: Hane Naoki (left) and Yamashita Keigo count the final score. Match referee Rin Kaiho 9P sits in the background (center).

Categories: World
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Jiang, Yang & Li Lead in SAMG Qualifier

Thursday July 21, 2011

Mingjiu Jiang 7P, Huiren Yang 1P and Jie Li 7D are leading the way in the Sport Accord Mind Games qualifier after three rounds. East Coast rivals Jie Li and Andy Liu battled it out in Round 3 on Monday, July 18, with Li exacting revenge on Liu, who had dethroned Li last November as U.S. rep at the Fujitsu Cup; Li had been the Fujitsu rep three times. Mingjiu Jiang 7P from San Francisco defeated California amateur champion Danny Ko 7D on Monday and Huiren Yang 1P from Boston managed to handle former Japanese insei Sorin Gherman in 290 moves. Click here for current standings and game records. Round 4 starts on Thursday 7/21 at 8p ET.

Categories: U.S./North America
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Jiang & Li Lead SAMG Qualifier

Tuesday July 19, 2011

Mingjiu Jiang 7P and Jie Li 7d lead the online Sport Accord Mind Games Qualifier, both with three wins and no losses.  There are just two rounds left in the SAMG: Round 4 on July 21-23 and Round 5 on July 24-26. Click here for latest standings.

[link]

Yuan Zhou 7d upset FengYun 9P by just 1.5 points in this July 11 Round 1 game.

Categories: U.S./North America
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Excitement Building for Upcoming U.S. Go Congress in Santa Barbara, CA

Tuesday July 19, 2011

With just twelve days left before the year’s biggest go event on the continent, there’s still time to register for the 2011 U.S. Go Congress July 30-August 7 in Santa Barbara, CA – and to sign up online for Congress tournaments and events! “This year’s Congress is proving truly exciting,” says Congress Director Lisa Scott. “Between tour groups from three countries, new tournaments, tons of trips to local attractions, and nearly 20 pros, we’re beyond pumped!”
- photo of the University of California, Santa Barbara, site of the 2011 U.S. Go Congress

Prabhavalkar & Thompson Top Tacoma Tourney

Monday July 18, 2011

Rohit Prabhavalkar 9k and Bill Thompson 16k topped the July 17 Tacoma (WA) Go Club’s Congress Warm-up tournament, posting 3-1 records. The 4-round tournament, held at the Seattle Go Center, drew “Fourteen intrepid go players, ranging from 6d to 17K, who showed up on a beautiful Sunday morning in Seattle to play go,” reports Gordon Castanza. TD Mike Malveaux was also warming up: he’ll be the US Open TD at the upcoming 2011 US Go Congress in Santa Barbara. The Tacoma Go Club provided lunch-time pizzas for all players.
- photo courtesy Gordon Castanza

Categories: U.S./North America
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Canada Edges Out U.S. in Gerry Cup Mixed-Team Tournament

Monday July 18, 2011

It was a rough weekend for U.S. teams. The Japanese women’s soccer team beat the U.S. team in the World Cup and Canada edged out the  U.S. 8-7 in the third Gerry Cup mixed-team tournament. Click here for details on the Gerry Cup; your local sports section has reports on the women’s soccer match.

Categories: U.S./North America
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Crumb Takes First at Skip Ascheim Memorial Tournament in Somerville

Monday July 18, 2011

Matthew Crumb 3k topped a field of 24 players at the Massachusetts Go Association’s Skip Ascheim Memorial Tournament, which was held July 17 in Somerville, Massachusetts. Eric Osman 2d (r in photo) was second and John Aspinall 3k (l) was third; Crumb had left by the time the photo was taken. In an email to the Western Massachusetts go club, Osman noted that he upheld the “honor” of the club by going 4-0: “Osman handily felled the honorable Sir Francis Roads of  British Go Association fame, as well as two 7d’s.   ‘I feel my medal is  a bit pre-tarnished’ says Osman, who admits that his first round win was influenced by his 2d opponent putting his own stones in atari at a crucial moment in the game.   ‘These things happen’.”
- Based on a report from Eva Casey and Eric Osman’s email

Categories: U.S./North America
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Lee Wins NOVA Congress Tuneup Tournament

Monday July 18, 2011

Josh Lee 4d (in photo at right) went 4-0 to win the top section at the annual NOVA Congress Tuneup tournament held July 16 in Fairfax, VA. Lee says he is ready for Congress now even if his score means he will likely be competing at 5d in Santa Barbara. Second place in that section went to Jimmy Yang 5d 2-2 on a tie breaker with Xinlin Yang 2d. Other sectional winners in the tournament were Don Allison 1k at 3-1, Willis Huang 5k at 4-0, and Tristan Tran 16k with a 4-0 record. The other second place winners were Kabe Chin 1k 2-2, Joey Phoon 6k 2-2, and Michael Rhone 15k 2-2. All winners received certificates good for free internet lessons at Guo Juan’s Go School.
- Gurujeet Khalsa

Categories: U.S./North America
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