Thursday June 4, 2015
The Academia Cubana de Go has announced that it will host the 17th Ibero-American Championship tournament in Havana October 9-11. US players are very welcome, organizers say. “I had a great time,” says Bob Gilman, who was one of four US players at last year’s Ibero-American Championship in Quito, Ecuador in 2014
The relaxation of restrictions on travel to Cuba by US citizens should make it easier for US players to travel to Havana for this tournament, says Gilman, who visited Havana in 2013 with a group of US players. “Travel for a competition is now permissible under a ‘general license.’” While prior government approval is not necessary, travelers must maintain documentation for five years that this travel meets the specifications in the Treasury Department regulations. “I am doubtful whether a trip extending much before or after the tournament would meet the regulatory standards for travel for a competition,” says Gilman. “Another possibility would be a ‘people to people’ group trip such as in 2013.” While this would permit seeing more of Cuba, it “requires more organization and has its own set of regulatory standards to meet,” notes Gilman, who adds “I would be interested in hearing from US players interested in making the trip.” Write Gilman here.
Wednesday June 3, 2015
The AGA, together with the American Go Foundation (AGF), will bring two Cuban players to the US Go Congress in St. Paul this August and is raising funds to support the effort . “Cuba has a very active go community,” says AGA Director Bob Gilman, who has taken the lead in organizing this visit, “Bringing these Cubans to the Go Congress will help build links with players in the United States and is very timely as relationships between the US and Cuban governments continue to improve.”
The players are Rafael Torres Miranda, President of the Academia Cubana de Go, Cuban 2 dan, and Professor Lazaro Bueno Perez from the province of Camaguey, Cuban 8 kyu. Professor Bueno has been active in teaching the game in his home province. Because the Cuban players cannot afford the trip on their own, the AGF is conducting an independent fund-raising campaign to bring them to the Congress. For more on how to support the effort, see the additional information here.
Wednesday June 3, 2015
Thanks to a new reciprocal agreement between the American Go E-Journal and the French Go Review, readers of both publications will benefit. The FGR is translating longtime go journalist John Power’s reports for the E-Journal into French and publishing them on the Revue Française de Go blog (three have been published so far ; click here for the most recent one). In return, they will be providing English translations of selected reports on the FGR blog for publication in the E-Journal.
“Go is a global game and we’re tremendously excited to launch this cooperative publishing venture with our colleagues in France,” said E-Journal Managing Editor Chris Garlock.
Tuesday June 2, 2015
After eight years, EuroGoTV has shut down. “We started just as a place where the go-player could watch instruction videos and video reports, but soon EuroGoTV changed to a real go-news site with live video streaming,” writes founder Harry Weerheijm in the final edition of EuroGo TV’s email newsletter on May 27.
Nearly 3,000 tournament reports were published on the EuroGoTV website, including tens of thousands of photos of go events across Europe. EuroGoTV regularly streamed live video of tournament games and posted “over 900 videos” on YouTube, according to Weerheijm (right). EuroGoTV’s newsletter was widely ready by go players throughout Europe and was a reliable source of European go news for the E-Journal.
Ultimately, the burdens of the time and energy necessary to run EuroGoTV combined to make continuing the service untenable for Weerheijm, who also expressed disappointment that more go players didn’t pay to access the videos and that tournament organizers rarely used EuroGoTV as a tool to attract sponsors. He thanked his partner Judith van Dam, Catalin Taranu 5p, Peter Dijkema, Olivier Dulac, and EuroGoTV’s VIP members for their support for the project.
“Harry has been a tireless member of our small band of Western go journalists,” said E-Journal Managing Editor Chris Garlock. “He has single-handedly set a very high bar for the rest of us and we owe him a great debt for all his hard work promoting go. We are very sad to see the end of EuroGoTV but wish Harry all the best in the future.”
The EJ plans to continue covering the European go scene through the efforts of European Correspondent, Kim Ouweleen. Anyone interested in joining that team can email email@example.com. The EJ is also in the process of developing plans for video coverage from this year’s US Go Congress; stay tuned for updates on that effort soon.
Monday June 1, 2015
Youwhan Kim 7d, former Korean insei and winner of last year’s Cotsen Open (10/26 EJ), will be sipping his coffee from the 9th annual Santa Monica Coffee Cup. Kim (right) took top honors by going 3-0 in the one-day tournament, beating fellow Korean visitor Seunghee Ryu 7d in the final. Ryu and Kim were the strongest of a strong “Espresso” section; eight of the 48 competitors were 5d or stronger. Other 3-0 winners were Tyler Oyakawa 3d in the Java Section, Jeff McLellan 4k in the Mocha Section, Greg Kulevich 8k in the Latte Section and Jeremy Cook 17k and Ryan Kim 23k in the Decaf section. In addition to hand-painted mugs and tiles for first through fourth place, winners and placers got bags of organic Peruvian light-roast coffee ground and packed by owner Pam Stollings of the UnUrban Coffeehouse. Players with no wins received a portable go board courtesy of the Korean Baduk Association as a consolation prize. TD Joe Cepiel also awarded one of the KBA boards to the youngest player attending, six-year-old Oliver Williams (at left, with Andy Okun and Myungwan Kim 9p), who completed a game in good form. The turnout, close to the Coffee Cup’s highest, was boosted not only by visitors from Korea, but by large contingents from San Diego and Arizona and a player from Hamburg, as well as the cool, sunny weather.
- report/photos courtesy Andy Okun
Monday June 1, 2015
The first American Chang Qi tournament will be held this fall in conjunction with the semi-finals of the 2015 Chang Qi Cup, which will be held in the US in September, the first time a professional go tournament semi-final will be held in North America. A major Chinese go tournament, the Chang Qi Cup semis will feature four of the world’s top go professionals, live review and commentary from the legendary Chang Hao 9P and a major American amateur tournament, all held at Harvard University in Cambridge, MA, September 26-28.
“This tournament is a great opportunity to see top pros battling it out in person,” says local organizer Cole Pruitt. “We expect to draw many of the strongest players in North America to compete” in the inaugural American Chang Qi tournament which will offer a total prize pool of at least $15,000 distributed across several divisions. “Every part of the event is free for the public and online registration is coming soon!”
Supported by the Shanghai Ing Foundation, the event is organized by the American Collegiate Go Association. the tournament will be AGA-rated and will be jointly hosted with the American Go Association. The American Chang Qi tournament will include a special ‘university showdown’ where students can win prize money for having the best turnout from their school, the best record during the tournament, and more. “On Saturday night, we’re planning a special ‘Students and Professionals’ night out, where students at the event can hang out with and get to know professional players visiting from China,” adds Pruitt.
“As we gear up for the event, we want to bring on university students to help us organize it and make it an incredible event. We encourage all interested students to apply to be an organizer. In exchange for helping us run the event, we’ll cover your travel, room, and board in Boston during the event and you’ll get behind-the-scenes access, wine-and-dine the visiting pros from China, and more.”
photo: Chang Hao 9p competes at the 10th Chang Qi Cup back in 2013 (credit: Go Game Guru)
Saturday May 30, 2015
British Youth Postponed: Originally planned for May 31, the British Youth Go Championship has been pushed to the fall of 2015. The UK Go Challenge Finals (13×13 boards) is going ahead though on Saturday 18th July in Letchworth Garden City. All young players are welcome to attend.
Challengers’ League: This year’s Challengers’ League, played between the top 8 available players coming out of the Candidates’ Tournament, took place at the Goddard Arms in Swindon on May 23-26. Andrew Kay (the reigning British Champion) won all of his games to lead the field, followed by Andrew Simons who won all of his games except for his game against Andrew Kay. Charles Hibbert, playing in his first Challengers’ League, finished with 4 wins in third place. Andrew Kay and Andrew Simons will now go on to play for this year’s British Championship title.
Tuesday May 26, 2015
The three American Go Association (AGA) regional Board of Director seats are up for election and with just over two weeks to go, no candidates have been nominated. The current terms of office expire this September. Nominations, including self-nominations may be made by full members for the region in which the member resides and must be received by June 15, 2015. Nominations and questions must be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org. Click here for complete election information and qualifications.
Tuesday May 26, 2015
Lee Hajin 3p, popularly known on YouTube as Haylee, will record one of her signature play-and-explain games at the US Go Congress, the AGA announced. Though the exact format is still to be determined, her opposition will include fellow YouTube broadcaster Nick Sibicky, possibly as part of a team, said AGA VP of Operations Andrew Jackson. “The idea is we stream Hajin in one room telling us about her game while the opponents are debating their fate in another room, probably also recorded. We’ll edit the two videos together later to put on YouTube.” This year’s Congress runs August 1-9 in St Paul, MN.
In her videos, Hajin records as she plays a random player on Tygem, explaining her moves and thinking as she goes along. In Haylee’s gentle but disciplined playing style, games usually proceed rather quietly until her opponent — generally a very strong player — makes a modest mistake and their game disintegrates like an airplane whose rivets turn out to have been made of putty. Lee, a frequent Go Congress attendee, does the Haylee videos as a sideline to her current job as Secretary General of the International Go Federation. She has more than 2,800 subscribers and 214,000 views for her 90 videos. Nick Sibicky started his YouTube channel with recordings of his DDK lessons at the Seattle Go Center, and they have grown in popularity, reaching nearly 9,000 subscribers with more than three quarters of a million views.
- Andy Okun