American Go E-Journal » Youth

Japanese girl to become youngest professional go player

Sunday January 6, 2019

Ten-year-old Sumire Nakamura will become the youngest professional go player on April 1. She began playing at the age of three2019.01.06-Sumire Nakamura 10-year-old and was competing in national tournaments in Japan by the time she was seven. The previous record was set by Rina Fujisawa, who was 11 when she became a professional player in 2010. “I’m happy when I win,” the Osaka schoolgirl told a press conference in Tokyo on Saturday. “I want to have a title while being in junior high school.” When Cho U, one 2019.01.06-Sumire-Iyamaof the leading players, faced off against Sumire last month to gauge her skills, the child prodigy stunned association officials by holding the 38-year-old pro to a draw. “She proved to be a lot stronger than I had imagined,” said Cho after the game. “I played with Iyama when he was in elementary school, but I am under the impression that she is better than he was back then.” She is the only child of professional go player Shinya Nakamura 9P, 45, and wife, Miyuki, 38, a former go instructor. When she was 7, her family moved to Seoul for Sumire to undergo go training, traveling back and forth between Japan and South Korea. The Nihon Ki-in announced Jan. 5 that it will accept Sumire, an Osaka fourth-grader, as the first pro under a special program for elementary school go players “with the potential for becoming the world’s No. 1.” After Japanese players had lost world titles by 2005, an alarmed Japan Go Association set up the program to allow extremely gifted children to play as a professional without requiring them to pass a pro test.

Includes reporting by the BBC and Japan News 

 

 

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Categories: Japan,Main Page,Youth
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Registration Open for the 6th North American Kyu Championships

Saturday January 5, 2019

Crystal-trophy“You may have just made your resolutions for the new year, but young kyu players under the age of 18 from North America will not have to wait long to vie for glory in the 6th North American Kyu Championships (NAKC) on February 2nd,” says Youth Coordinator Justin Teng. “This one-day, four-round tournament will be hosted on KGS, where the top Junior (under 13) and Senior (under 18) players in each of 5 divisions can win a marvelous crystal trophy engraved with his or her name.” The champions of the top division will also be granted entry into this year’s Redmond Cup, a tournament traditionally open only to dan-level players. In addition, courtesy of the American Go Foundation, players who participate in all rounds of the tournament are eligible for a $200 scholarship to the 2019 US Go Congress in Madison, Wisconsin. Register for the NAKC by January 27th, and read more about the rules and format here. - Paul Barchilon, EJ Youth Editor

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Ye, Velasco, Trujillo top Pan-American Championship

Saturday November 24, 2018

Screen Shot 2018-11-24 at 3.21.40 PMAaron Ye 7d of the US took first place in the Pan-American Championship in Mexico City on November 10th.  Canadian Player Manuel Velasco came in second and Cuban player Orlando Trujillo placed third.  Mr. Kijin Song, the director of the Korean Cultural Center in Mexico presented the winners with certificates and cash prizes of $30,000, $20,000, and $10,000 Mexican pesos for their respective placings in the tournament. The online qualifiers drew players from Argentina, Uruguay, Chile, Colombia, Brazil, Ecuador, Venezuela, the Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Peru, Cuba, the USA, and Canada. The finals were held at the Museo Nacional de las Culturas, within walking distance of the Zocalo Plaza in Mexico City. The event drew a large audience from the local go community. “The 2nd Baduk Festival in Mexico was held at the same time,” reports organizer Sid Avila, “we had free games amongst the public participants, the majority of them being children; 2 raffles were held so that 18 people could play simultaneous games with Soohang Ryu 7P, from the Korean Baduk Association.Later prizes were raffled for the public, and we had a baduk book exhibition and a photographic exhibit as well.”

Online preliminaries were held in August, and determined the top five players from different countries. They were invited to Mexico City, with all expenses paid, to compete in the final stage. In addition to Ye and Velasco,  Fernando Aguilar of Argentina (who had to cancel due to family complications), Alfonso Artique of Uruguay, Abner Turkieltaub Melo of Chile, and Orlando Trujillo of Cuba (by invitation) were the finalists.  As the host country, Mexico was excluded from the online qualifier and received a seeded seat into the finals.  The Korean Cultural Center in Mexico held a separate online qualifier for Mexican players, which was won by Abraham Florencia, a high-dan  player who placed 8th at the World Amateur Go Championships earlier in the year.

A great amount of attention was focused on the game between Ye (black) and Velasco (white).  Velasco had a strong opening and held a large territorial lead until a detrimental mistake in the middle-game. Ye successfully seized the opportunity and killed a large group, ultimately securing a win-by-resignation.  After the tournament, the game was displayed on a projector in the background and was reviewed by Ryu.

Ye reports ” I was glad to have the opportunity to attend the event and make new go friends from Latin American countries. Organizing a Pan-American tournament was a creative and innovative idea to connect go players from North and South America. After all, an important part of the game is connecting with the community. I was surprised but excited to see the event attract quite a lot of local Mexican go players. The experience was very unique and memorable and I hope to continue to promote go on the continent in the future.”

The event was sponsored by the Embassy of the Republic of Korea and the Korean Cultural Center in Mexico, with the valuable support of the National Museum of World Cultures, the Korean Baduk Association, the Tygem Go Server, the Korean Sports Promotion Organization, and the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism. For more pictures, click here. -Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor. Photo by Korean Cultural Center in Mexico photographer Seol Ha Kim.

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Seattle hosts annual Fall Youth Tournament

Friday November 23, 2018

On Sunday, November 18, as part its ongoing Youth programs, the Seattle Go Center hosted its annual fall tournament for go 2018.11 23-Seattle-Youth Tournament 181118-020players age 17 and younger.  It was a just-for-fun event where the kids could choose to play their games on 19×19 or 13×13.  Eight kids played three rounds in the 19×19 group, and thirteen played four rounds in the 13×13 group.

2018.11 23-Seattle-Youth Tournament Prize 181118-026Players ranged from pre-school through 7th grade. For most of them, it was their first tournament ever.  About 24% of the players came from one of the Go Center’s school outreach programs, another 38% from the Northwest Chinese School Weiqi Club headed by Sonny Cho, and the remaining 38% didn’t declare a program affiliation.

Halfway through the event, light snacks were devoured by the growing young go players and their support crews (a.k.a. families).  At the end, all players got to choose a prize, in order of win-loss record.  Donated prizes of go equipment were very popular.  Other prizes included folding fans, sketchbooks, erasers shaped like dinosaurs, etc.

Thanks go to the families who brought the young players, and to the volunteers (Peter Kron, Sonny Cho, and Brian Allen) who helped it all run smoothly.  Seattle Go Center’s next Youth event will be on a Sunday in March 2019 — exact date to be announced soon.
- report by Mike Malveaux, photos by Brian Allen

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Registration for 2018 Young Lions Tournament Closing Soon

Thursday November 1, 2018

“Registration for the 2018 American Go Honor Society Young Lions Tournament closes this Saturday, November 3,” says AGHS Vice President Jeremy Chiu, “The Young Lions Tournament is a four round tournament held on November 11 and 18 that is open to all youth players in the United States, Canada, and Mexico.

For more detailed rules, please click here.

For registration, please click here.

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New York Youth Open registration open

Sunday October 14, 2018

The first AGA-rated youth tournament in New York will be held November 17 in Little Neck, NY. “Players of all strengths are2018.10.13_youth-ranking-nyc welcome!” says organizer Stephanie Yin. Pre-registration is required, please register hereThe deadline for registration is Sunday, November 11, 2018. AGA membership is required; click here to become a member. More info can be found here.

Trophies will be are awarded in each bracket and both elementary group and middle/high school groups. Cash prizes and trophies are awarded in Open sections. Deadline for registration is Sunday, November 11, 2018.
photo: ranking competition, by Stephanie Yin

 

 

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World Students Go Oza deadline coming up

Sunday October 14, 2018

Attention students, the deadline for entering the World Students Go Oza Championship is coming up October 21. Students under the age of 30 and currently enrolled in an American university/college are eligible to participate in the online preliminary round, irrespective of nationality. Airfare and accommodations for the World Students Go Oza Championship — Feb 18 to 22, 2019 in Tokyo, Japan – will be covered by the event organizers. Click here  for details and here for the entry form.

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Categories: Main Page,Youth
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Registration Open for 2018 Young Lions Tournament

Saturday October 13, 2018

young_lions“Registration for the 2018 American Go Honor Society Young Lions Tournament is now open,” says AGHS Vice President Jeremy Chiu,  “The Young Lions Tournament, one of the longest running AGHS events, is a premier youth title tournament for go players of ages 18 and under. All young players from the United States, Canada, and Mexico – whether you’re a high dan or a complete beginner – are welcome to participate in this online tournament. There will be $600 in cash, trophies, and other prizes.” - EJ Youth Correspondent Lionel Zhang

For more detailed rules, please click here.

For registration, please click here.

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Registration Open for 2018 American Youth Go League

Saturday October 13, 2018

youth_go_league“Playing games regularly is crucial for young go players to improve,” says AGHS Vice President Jeremy Chiu, “The American Youth Go League gives the opportunity for young players to participate in online monthly leagues consisting of 4-5 rounds each. Using a ladder system, players will be matched against others of similar strength to play friendly but competitive games, while learning from each other. All players from the U.S., Canada, and Mexico of ages 18 and under are invited. This is a great way for young players to practice playing more serious online games. Rewards will be given to participating players.” - EJ Youth Correspondent Lionel Zhang

For more detailed rules, please click here.

For registration, please click here.

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AGF College Scholarships

Saturday October 6, 2018

AGF-logo-smallApplications are now being accepted for the American Go Foundation(AGF) college scholarshipThe program  recognizes high school students who have served as important youth organizers and promoters for the go community. To apply, download and complete the application form here.  Applicants should describe their accomplishments and volunteer work in a short essay. Letters of recommendation may also be included. Applicants whose enthusiasm and ambition have helped spread go in under-served areas will be given special consideration. Strong players who spend much of their time voluntarily teaching will also be considered, although the award focuses on promoters and organizers who have made substantial contributions during their go career. Applications are due Nov. 5th this year. -Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor.  

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