Monday July 8, 2013
Bruno Poltronieri 2d from Warwick University won the 25th Milton Keynes Tournament, beating Toby Manning 2d in the final round. Graham Blackmore 13k and Brent Cutts 8k also won all three of their games. Click here for full tournament report.
The tourney was played on Saturday July 6, at the Sports Pavilion in the Open University‘s grounds. Milton Keynes is a planned city, built in the second half of the last century. Its location in Buckinghamshire was chosen for its equal proximity to the ancient university cities of Oxford and Cambridge and is itself the realspace centre of the (mainly virtual) Open University. It encompasses the town of Bletchley and hence Bletchley Park, site of the famous wartime code-breaking activities of Alan Turing and others. The roughly rectilinear gridwork road system is used as the basis for the board in the “Milton Keynes Board Tournament“, which is featured as a side event at the Milton Keynes tournament (graphic from tournament flyer at right; flyer and problem by Tim Hunt 2d, who also won the event. Solution to be published in the next edition of the British Go Journal).
- Tony Collman, British correspondent for the E-Journal
Sunday July 7, 2013
Dmitry Surin 6D came very close in his attempt to wrest the Russian Cup from favorite Ilya Shikshin on the final day of the 2013 Russian Go Congress on July 7. Surin, who unexpectedly won his game against Alexander Dinerchtein 3P in the semi-finals had defeated Shikshin in a recent tournament, so the match promised to be spectacular from the very start. As previously reported (Surin Bests Dinerchtein to Win Berth in Russian Cup Final 7/6/2013 EJ), Surin is an accomplished joseki expert and inventor, so it was no surprise when he started one of the myriad complicated variations of the taisha joseki. Both players stuck to their natural active fighting style, so the later part of the championship game delivered very intense collisions, an exciting clash lasting until the very end, with Shikshin eking out a narrow 1.5 point win.
- Daria Koshkina, Russian corespondent for the E-Journal; photo by Mikail Krylov
Sunday July 7, 2013
Poland: The 36 International Warsaw Go Tournament finished June 30 in Warszawa with Koichiro Habu 4d in first, Leszek Soldan 5d in second, and Stanislaw Frejlak 4d in third. Romania: After six long days, Cristian Pop 7d (left) was declared the winner of the Romanian National Championship in Mangalia on June 30. Cornel Burzo 6d placed second while Lucian Corlan 5d came in third. Netherlands: Zeno van Ditzhuijzen 5d triumphed at the Toernooi van Utrecht on June 23. Behind him was Robert Rehm 5d in second and Alexander Eerbeek 5d in third.
— Annalia Linnan, based on reports from EuroGoTV, which include complete result tables and all the latest European go news
Saturday July 6, 2013
Dmitry Surin 6D (below) upset Alexander Dinerchtein 3P in the 2013 Russian Cup semi-final on July 6, knocking Dinerchtein out of his accustomed spot in the final, which will be broadcast on KGS on Sunday, July 7. The Cup, which has about 70 players this year, is the final and most spectacular event at the annual Russian Go Congress. The battle of the A league includes the top right Russian players in a double-elimination tournament. Dinerchtein lost by 2.5 points to Surin, known in Europe for winning several European Pair Go Championships with partner Natalia Kovaleva. Surin’s style features deep knowledge and understanding of intricate josekis and difficult variations, great fighting skills and acute reading, all of which he brought to bear in his exciting game with Dinerchtein. Though Surin is considered to be one of the strongest Russian players, most deciding matches at major Russian events wind up Shikshin vs Dinerchtein clashes so Sunday’s final is being highly anticipated at the Congress in Saint Petersburg.
- Daria Koshkina, Russian correspondent for the E-Journal; photo by Mikhail Krylov
Friday July 5, 2013
The European Go Federation has signed a far-reaching and lucrative contract with a group of Chinese investors to promote go in Europe. The deal aims to improve the strength of European amateurs, establish a professional system in Europe and support the European Go Federation, all to achieve the overall goals of enhancing go’s popularity in Europe, as well as developing new cultural contacts between Europe and China. “I think the AGA and EGF efforts will complement each other in a number of ways and give both organizations an even more forceful story to tell to potential sponsors,” said American Go Association President Andy Okun. “EGF President Martin Stiassny deserves a lot of credit for almost single-handedly bringing about this contract,” added Thomas Hsiang, the longtime International Go Federation and American Go Association official who was elected General Secretary of the International Mind Sports Association (IMSA) earlier this year. “I congratulate him on a job well done. There is a lot of hard work ahead, but with the efforts in Europe as well as in US, the future of go in the West looks bright and promising.” The investor group is known as the Beijing Zong Yi Yuan Cheng Culture Communication Co. Ltd. (called CEGO), and is comprised of investors who “believe on the future development of European Go and are willing to commit themselves to promote Go, a great representative of Chinese traditional culture, in the West,” according to the document. In addition to a “Go Academic System” that will send 4-6 players annually to study in China, the contract envisions a new professional go system in Europe in which the EGF will certify up to two players annually as “European Professionals” through new European top tournaments, including a yearly promotion tournament for the aspiring professionals. In addition to financial support for these initiatives, the contract pledges CEGO to contribute yearly payments to enable the EGF to become a “more professional organisation” – including setting up an office and hiring staff – in order to develop and implement these and other goals over the next decade. News of the contract, which was posted on the BGA website, originally broke on Lifein19x19, where there’s been extensive discussion of the deal.
Friday July 5, 2013
The first-ever official go-poker tournament is being held this week at the 16th annual Russian Go Congress in Saint Petersburg. Also known as “Dango,” the go variant is well-known in Europe, where it’s played by top players like Matthew Macfadyen and Alexander Dinerchtein 3P. At the beginning of the game each player has 36 cards that can be either go shapes or “action cards” (placing or removing stones, pass etc). Opponents alternate turns, taking a card and “playing” it on the board. Unlike go, Dango introduces a significant measure of luck and randomness but proponents say “it is not on any account a foolish game,” noting that go-poker “requires memorizing, counting and tactical skills.” The entertainment factor for players and viewers lies in the unexpected twists that can turn the whole game upside down after each move. The go-poker tournament at the Russian Go Congress is being held in the evenings after the major regular competitions. Alexander Dinerchtein 3P, who’s a fan of Dango, is participating, providing amateurs with perhaps their best chance to best a professional go player.
- reported by Daria Koshkina, Russian correspondent for the E-Journal; photo credits: cards photo from dango.pro; players photo by Alexey Kozhunkov
Tuesday July 2, 2013
The 16th Russian Go Congress got off to an exciting start in Saint Petersburg on June 29th and 30th when 18-year-old Mikhail Svyatlovsky, a shodan from Moscow, won the Valery Astashkin Memorial Tournament. The traditional first tournament of the congress is held in honor of Valery Astashkin (1945-2008), the “Father” of modern Russian go. Astashkin (right) and Georgy Nilov were the first to spread and promote go in Russia in the 1970s. Together they published a series of introductory teaching articles in “Nauka i Zhizn” (Science and Life, a very popular Soviet/Russian magazine of the time) that produced hundreds of new players, clubs and tournaments. In 1977, Astashkin initiated the first USSR Go Championship and in 1989 he became the first president of the new USSR Go Federation.
This year’s Valery Astashkin Memorial Tournament attracted 55 players ranging in strength from 5-dan to 20-kyu. Its distinctive feature is a full handicap system, making it especially enjoyable and appreciated by kyu players who get a chance to take on stronger players as well as high dans who can practice their fighting skills. Three young aspiring Russian players topped this year’s event. In addition to winner Mikhail Svyatlovsky, who had already shone in several local and youth competitions, Anton Radyushkin 8k from St Petersburg came in 2nd and in 3rd place was Kim Shahov, a 5-kyu from Moscow who is just 11 years old.
The Congress, which attracts hundreds of players from all parts of the big country, as well as foreign guests, runs through July 7th and includes several go tournaments, including the Russian Team Championship and annual Russian Cup.
- reported by Daria Koshkina, Russian Correspondent for the E-Journal. Photo credits: Astashkin photo from Astashkin family archive; Svyatlovsky photo by Alexey Kozhunkov. Click here for tourney results (in Russian, not yet submitted to EGD).
Tuesday July 2, 2013
Super-Go Tournaments between professionals from China and Japan were quite popular back in the 1980s. The legendary Nie Weiping earned his nickname as the “Iron Goalkeeper” when, as China’s last remaining player in the first three Super-Go events, he defeated all the remaining Japanese players, a sequence of 11 consecutive wins. This year France and Germany are attempting to rekindle this national excitement with the Élysée Cup, a friendly online team tournament occasioned by the “année franco-allemande/Deutsch-französisches Jahr” celebrating the French-German friendship. Organized by the French Go Federation and the German Go Federation, the tournament — played on KGS — follows the model of the previous Super-Go tournaments, with each country fielding teams comprised of eight top players each. The two lowest-ranked players begin, with the winner continuing to play the next strongest opponent from the other team until there are no more opponents left. If the last player of a team is defeated it has lost the tournament. In addition to national bragging rights, the winning team will collect 200 Euro. France’s Toru Imamura scored the first win on June 29, defeating Jun Tarumi by resignation; His next opponent will be Lukas Kraemer on a date to be determined. The French team includes Motoki Noguchi 7d, Thomas Debarre 6d, Rémi Campagnie 6d, Benjamin Papazoglou 5d, Tanguy Le Calvé 5d, Antoine Fenech 5d, Frédéric Donzet 5d, Toru Imamura 4d and Benjamin Dréan-Guénaizia 5d (Substitute Player). The German team includes Pei Zhao 6d, Jin Zou 6d, Benjamin Teuber 6d, Franz-Josef Dickhut 6d, Christoph Gerlach 6d, Johannes Obenaus 5d, Lukas Kraemer 5d, Jun Tarumi 5d and Yi Zhang 5 Dan (Substitute Player).
- Jan Engelhardt, German correspondent for the E-Journal
Monday July 1, 2013
Richard Moseson 5k has been chosen as the American Go Foundation’s Teacher of the Year, winning a free trip to the US Go Congress in Tacoma, where he will be honored at the final awards banquet. “The most satisfying thing about introducing go to young kids has been seeing many of them become totally involved in the game, and eventually zipping past me in playing strength,” Moseson told the E-Journal. Moseson started the go club at Manlius Pebble Hill (MPH), in Manlius NY, when his two sons were both students at the school, in 2003, and has continued ever since. “At various times I’ve also run short eight-week sessions for students in the first grade and third grade classes, and we’ve had some of those students eagerly join the club when they reached middle school age,” Moseson reports. “I’m also running a club with Chinese elementary school age kids, at a ‘Chinese young adult ministry’ that meets every Friday evening for dinner and bible study. I meet with the kids for an hour before dinner.
“We had five students from our two clubs play in the annual Salt City Go Tournament last month (one of them won the C Division with a 4-0 record and another won three games and finished in third place). I have most of the students at both clubs playing on KGS now. We had two three-person teams from MPH participate in this year’s AGHS School Team Tournament, and they both finished with respectable 2-2 records. Some of the kids have come to play at some of the Syracuse Go Club weekly meetings as well. Membership at MPH has waxed and waned (our high has been 15 students), but I’ve had the satisfaction of seeing three of my students head off to college stronger than I am,” adds Moseson.
In addition to his current clubs, Moseson has run programs at other schools in the past, and has been active in the Syracuse go community. He has also served as an AGF Mentor for several years, helping new go programs across the nation with advice, support, and resources, via e-mail. “The AGF board faced a very tough decision this year,” reports President Terry Benson, “with four extremely strong candidates, each of whom fully deserved the award. Fortunately, we choose a new teacher every year, and the other candidates will all have a chance again next year.” -Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor. Photos by Richard Moseson: Upper left: Moseson; center: at the MPH club; bottom: at the Chinese Young Adult Ministry.
Monday July 1, 2013
A go presentation and tournament will be part of the Las Vegas Mind Sports Festival at the Venetian/Palazzo this coming weekend, according to AGA President Andy Okun. The three-day event will also feature chess, mahjongg, Magic: The Gathering and Scrabble. This Friday, July 5, Okun will give a short presentation/lesson about go, followed by a 9×9 and/or blitz tournament, depending on attendance. On Saturday, July 6, at 11 a.m., a three-round AGA-rated tournament will be held in conjunction with the Las Vegas Go Club. Players interested in participating should send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.