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The Power Report: Lead changes in 40th Meijin League; Kisei S League starts; Cho U moves to Taiwan; Yamashita to challenge Iyama Gosei

Monday May 25, 2015

by John Power, Japan Correspondent for the E-Journal

Lead changes in 40th Meijin League: A game in the 40th Meijin League was played on a Monday, May 4, instead of the usual Thursday.2015.05.25-Kono-Rin Cho U 9P (B) beat Murakawa Daisuke Oza by 2.5 points, thus scoring what was only his second win in five games. Murakawa dropped to 3-3 and will probably have to focus on keeping his league place rather than on becoming the challenger. An important game was played on May 7 between the two players who were close on the heels of the provisional leader of the league, Ko Iso 8P. Kono Rin 9P (B) beat Yamashita Keigo 9P by resig. Kono (right) improved his score to 4-1 and shares the lead with Ko. Yamashita dropped to 3-2. On May 21, Takao (W) beat Ko Iso by resig. This completed the sixth round. The lead is now shared by Kono and Takao, who are both on 4-1. For the first time since the league began, Ko Iso has dropped out the lead or a share of it, but on 4-2 he is well placed if the above two falter; he hasn’t played either of them yet, so he doesn’t have to rely on other players to drag them down. Yamashita is next on 3-2.

Kisei S League starts: The S League is at the top of the pyramid of five leagues in the revamped Kisei tournament, and its winner has the 2015.05.25-murakawabest chance of becoming the Kisei challenger, as he gets a seat in the play-off and an automatic one-game lead as well. The first two games were played on May 7. Murakawa Daisuke Oza (left) started the week badly (see Meijin League report above), but did better here. Playing white, he beat Takao Shinji by 4.5 points. In the other game, Yoda Norimoto 9P (B) beat Kobayashi Satoru 9P by resig. The other players in the six-man league are Yamashita Keigo and Yamashiro Hiroshi. I was planning to report in detail only on the S League, but there was an interesting game in the A League on the 4th. Veteran player Kono Rin 9P (W) beat the up-and-coming new star Ichiriki Ryo 7P by resignation. On 2-0, Kono shares the lead in the eight-player A League with Cho Riyu 8P.

Cho U moves to Taiwan: Cho U 9P has revealed that he is moving to his homeland of Taiwan this 2015.05.25-Cho-Umonth, though he will remain a member of the Nihon Ki-in and keep playing in Japanese tournaments. The reason is his dissatisfaction with his results in recent years; he is hoping that a change in environment will bring about an improvement in his play. Many top players have come to Japan from Taiwan (Rin Kaiho, O Rissei, and O Meien, just to mention three), but this is the first time a top player has taken the reverse course. Cho is 35, an age at which even a top player usually sees a falling off in his results, but Cho is obviously not prepared to accept this. His inspiration may be Cho Chikun, who won his second triple crown (Kisei, Meijin, and Honinbo) at the age of 40. Cho U came to Japan at the age of ten and in 2009 became the first player to hold five top-seven titles simultaneously. He has seats in the top three leagues (though in the A League in the 40th Kisei, not the top S League), but he hasn’t won a title since losing the Kisei title in 2013. In an interview in the Yomiuri Newspaper, he said: ‘I can’t show [go fans] games of which I am ashamed. I think that changing my environment will have a positive effect on my go.’ A brief news item in Go Weekly stated that Kobayashi Izumi was taking a break from tournament play after her game on May 14 so that her children could study  in Taiwan. Cho’s desire to see his children master Chinese is obviously an additional motive for moving back to Taiwan. It’s a bit unfortunate that Kobayashi Izumi (aged 37), who just made a comeback to active play last year, once again has to sacrifice her own career for her family.

2015.05.25-yamashitaYamashita to challenge Iyama Gosei: Yamashita Keigo is doing his level best to make a breach in Iyama’s quadruple-crown citadel. In the play-off to decide the challenger for the 40th Gosei title, held at the Nihon Ki-in in Ichigaya, Tokyo on May 18, Yamashita (W) beat Kono Rin 9P by resignation. The game lasted 194 moves. Yamashita has won the Gosei title once, way back in 2000 (the 20th Gosei); in 2008 he unsuccessfully challenged Cho U, losing 1-3. This will be the third title match this year between Yamashita and Iyama; it is only the third time two players have played three top-seven matches against each other in the same year. Moreover, the Gosei is only the fourth title match of the year, so the two could well set a new record (Yamashita is still in the running to become the challenger in the Meijin and Tengen tournaments). The first game of the title match will be played on June 26.

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John F. Nash Jr., Math Genius Defined by a ‘Beautiful Mind,’ Dies at 86

Sunday May 24, 2015

John F. Nash Jr., a mathematician who shared a Nobel Prize in 1994 for work that greatly extended the reach and power of modern economic 2015.05.24_25NASH1-obit-master675theory and whose long descent into severe mental illness and eventual recovery were the subject of a book and a film, both titled “A Beautiful Mind,” was killed, along with his wife, in a car crash on Saturday in New Jersey. He was 86.

2015.05.24_beautiful_mind-movieDr. Nash was widely regarded as one of the great mathematicians of the 20th century, known for the originality of his thinking and for his fearlessness in wrestling down problems so difficult few others dared tackle them.

He invented a game, known as Nash, that became an obsession in the Fine Hall common room at Princeton, where he also played go. He also took on a problem left unsolved by Dr. von Neumann and Oskar Morgenstern, the pioneers of game theory, in their now-classic book, “Theory of Games and Economic Behavior.”
Adapted from Erica Good’s obituary in The New York Times. photo (right): John F. Nash Jr. at his Princeton graduation in 1950, when he received his doctorate; (left) Russell Crowe, as Nash, playing go in the 2001 film “A Beautiful Mind”

Eric Lui Wins Maryland Open

Sunday May 24, 2015

Eric Lui topped a field of 58 players to win the Maryland Open on Memorial Day weekend in Baltimore. Keith Arnold was the event organizer 2015.05.25_md-openand the Tournament Director was Todd Heidenreich. photos by Steve Colburn

2015.05.25_md-open-keithOpen Section
First: Eric Lui 7 dan; 
Second:  Zhaonian Chen 7 dan; Third: Andrew Huang 7 dan; Fourth: Ricky Zhao 7 dan
A Section: First: Michelle Zhang 5 dan; Second  Jacky Chong 4 dan
B Section: First: Eric Lee 3 dan; Second: Victor Kang 3 dan
C Section: First: David Edgar 2 dan; Second  Frederick Bao 1 dan
D Section: First: Isaac Wiener  3 kyu – Kyu Champion; Second: Jeremy Young 4 kyu
E Section: First: Kyle Cutler 6 kyu; Second:  Bob Crites 7 kyu
F Section: First: Antonina Perez-Lopez 21 kyu (undefeated); Second: Sarah Crites 13 kyu; Third: Jin Wu 10 kyu; Fourth: Kilin Tang 11 kyu
Fighting Spirit Prize – Laurie Ensworth  17 kyu
Gregory Lefler Prize – Feng Yun Go School ( 9 players)

The Power Report: Globis Cup Final Commentary, Huang vs. Na

Sunday May 24, 2015

2nd Globis Cup final: Huang vs. Na
White: Huang Yunsong 3P (China)
Black: Na Hyun 6P (Korea)
Played on May 10, 2015
See: The Power Report: Huang of China Wins Globis Cup 5/10 EJ

Venue: Graduate School of Management, Globis University
Commentary by O Meien 9P, translated by John Power, Japan E-Journal correspondent

It was no surprise that Na Hyun made the final of this tournament for players under 20, as he is one of the top young players in Korea. Among the Chinese players, one might have expected Yang Dingshin, rated 18th in the world, or Li Qincheng, who won the CCTV Cup, a TV tournament like Japan’s NHK Cup, last year, but Huang proved to be a dark horse. Actually, at 18 he is two years older than the other two Chinese representatives, so you could say he pulled rank.

The following commentary is an amplified version of the report in Go Weekly of the public commentary conducted by O Meien, with Mannami Nao 3P acting as his assistant.

The opening, with Black ignoring 8 to switch to the approach move of 9, is very popular these days. There are many examples of it from actual2015.05.24_globis-1-49 play. The same opening appeared in the play-off for third place.
        O: “In the old days, Black would have captured 16 instead of playing 21, but now this is the mainstream move. I don’t know which is better . . .” Formerly the moves to 21 were like a set opening, but now you often see the pattern to 25. The amount of research that has been carried out on this opening in China and Korea is incalculable. “But I don’t play it as White. I can’t understand why White burrows into the [top right] corner. Actually, this result gives a good contest, so probably my feel for go is out of whack.’ [Laughter from the audience]
        The two-space jump to 29 is also common. The hane of White 32 is also a vital point. O, on seeing Black 33: “This is a strong, calm move.” Instead of 33, you are tempted to play at A, but White has the attachment of B, so perhaps Black thinks this territory won’t amount to much. After gazing at 33 for a while, O expressed admiration. “I get it. He’s strong.”
        White 36. White thinks that the exchange for 37 will make 36 a forcing move when he attaches across the knight’s move with C.
Black 39 and 40 seem to be the par moves. O: “According to my feel for go, 3
9 should be at D. Na’s assessment is that the exchange for 40 makes 39 a forcing move rather than a bad move.”
        When Black expands the bottom with 41, White attacks inside by attaching at 42. The move at 21 leaves White with scope to play this move. O: “That’s why capturing the ladder stone is best.”
 2015.05.24_globis-dia-1       Black responds by solidifying his side territory with 43 on. If instead Black hanes on top with 1 in Dia. 1 (left), White plays 2 and 4, then slides to 6; this will be more than Black can handle. After the game, Huang rapidly laid out the continuation to 19 and said that this was not bad for White. Huang: “I’ve finished researching the attachment of 43. I have confidence in the local variations.”2015.05.24_globis-50-99
       White 54 is a good, calm move. O: “Moves like this reflect the player’s experience. “ At first, O had thought that the result to 52 was not interesting for White, but he started to revise his opinion on seeing 54 on the grounds that Huang was obviously satisfied and we could rely on his perception.
        White 60 is another calm move. Having played a forcing sequence on the right side, White believes that this is good enough. O commented at first that he couldn’t play 60, but White 62 convinced him that Huang knew what he was doing. It turned out later that both the players agreed that the game was good for White at this point. That’s why Black plays 61: he has to harass White’s sole weak group to get back into the game.
        When White ignores 61, 63 looks like the natural follow-up, but the players agreed later that attaching at 65 instead would have made the game more difficult. White’s solid extension of 64 works well. O: “This may have been the decisive point of the game.” That’s not to say that’s it’s a won game for White by any means, but he has an edge.
        Black 77, forestalling White E, is big, but so is White 78.
  2015.05.24_globis-100-112      Black 79 is an all-out move that clearly shows that Black feels he is behind. O commented that it may have been an overplay. It immediately struck O as being too deep.
        White 84. If White answers the peep at 90, Black intends to push down with 84, so countering with 84 is natural.
        The cut of White 92 is a good move. If Black answers at 97, White has the threat of F, so Black goes all out with 93.
        Black 99 extricates the center stones. If White cuts at 103, Black cuts at 102 and at this point Black is ahead in the capturing race. When White plays 100, however, Black has no choice but to reinforce at 103.
        White 112 is the knock-out punch: it makes miai of G and H, so Black has to resign.
        Huang: “There was a lot of pressure, but [winning] feels good. Next, I want to win a bigger international tournament.”
        Na: “I lost without being able to do a thing. I have regrets.”
        During his commentary, O commented that the strength of the top young Chinese and Korean players came from a mixture of reading ability and perception.
Incidentally, the day of the final was the first day that Huang wore a jacket instead of just a jersey. O commented that in China go is regarded as a sport, so the young players all wear jerseys. Often their training camps are held at the same venues as soccer training camps, so the players would feel funny if they dressed differently. O joked that they switch to suits when they turn 30. During this tournament, Ichiriki and the other Japanese representatives were turned out in natty suits and ties. One advantage of the Japanese system that struck me, however, is that the Japanese players are “socialized” earlier than the Chinese players. It was hard to get a word out of the Chinese teenagers in interviews, but the Japanese teenagers were already adept at public speaking. During the reception on the Thursday, Mannami called them up on to the stage at different times for mini “talk shows” TV-style and they all acquitted themselves well.
Mannami had an interesting comment about Korean players. She visited Korea to study go not long ago, and she said she was surprised by the way the young players chatted with each other until the start of the game. In Japan the players psych themselves up before the game, so there’s no chatting; the contest begins as soon as the players take their seats. (She used the sumo term “shikiri,” which refers to the long face-off before a bout begins.)

“Divine Move” Comes to Netflix

Sunday May 24, 2015

“The Divine Move,” last year’s Korean action movie about go (Korean Action Go Movie Opens in US & Canada  7/23/2014 EJ), is now on Netflix 2015.05.24_divine-moveunder its Korean name, Sin-ui Hansu, reports Matthew Hershberger. Click here.

 

Your Move/Readers Write: Portable Go Board?

Sunday May 24, 2015

Portable Go Board? “What kind of goban are the kids in your Chicago tournament story (Chicago Kids Compete in First Tourney 5/21 EJ) using?” writes Chris Uzal.2015.05.21-Chi-kids-cropped “Who makes it? And how did they make stones for it? It looks perfect. Right size for a backpack and a place for your fingers if you have to move the board. We need more of these in the United States and Europe. The traditional board size is due for a break in tradition.”
Small magnetic sets like that are readily available in the US.  Yellow Mountain and Yutopian both carry them.  

EuroGoTV Update (2): Italy, Slovakia, Lithuania, Croatia and Russia

Saturday May 23, 2015

Italy: The Trofeo Milano 2015 quarta tappa, played on the 9th of May in Milano, Italy, was won by Gionata Soletti 4k. Second place was for Andrea Failli 8k.

Slovakia: In the village of Liptovský Ján, Slovakia, two national championships took place from 5/6-5/10.
The 24th Slovak Championship was won by Maros Kral 4d, with Xaver Gubas 3d taking second place and Miroslav Poliak 1d ending third. Result table.
The Slovak Female Championship was won by Zuzana Kralikova 8k, with Viera Smolarikova 17k as second and Renata Truchanova 19k on third place. Result table.

Lithuania: The Vilniaus Taure 2015, played from 5/8-5/9 in Vilnius, Lithuania, was won by Andrius Petrauskas 3d. Second came Ernestas Romeika 2d and third was Vladas Zaleskas 2d. Result table.

Croatia: The 500th (!) Velika Gorica weekend tournament, played on the 9th of May in Velika Gorica, Croatia, was won by Matej Zakanj 4d. Second came Lovro Furjanic 2d and third was Zoran Mutabzija 2d.Result table.

Russia: In Russia several regional tournaments took place:
In Magadan, the Cup of the Magadan Region was played from 5/10-5/11. It was won by Vladimir Bal 7k, with Maria Ustjuzhina 6k in second place and third place going to Artem Tingajkin 11k. Result table.
In Novosibirsk, the Championship of the Siberian Federal District was played from 5/9-5/10. The tournament was won by Alexandr Vashurov 5d. Second came Stepan Trubicin 5d and third was Kirill Denisov 4d. Result table. For the lower kyu players a B league of the same tournament took place simultaneously. Maxim Shcherbak 9k was the winner, Mikhail Kopylov 12k second and Maxim Dukov 13k third. Result table.
In Simferopol, the Championship of Simferopol, played from 5/3-5/4, was won by Demjan Zavgorodnij 1k. Second came Oleg Afonin 2d and third was Mikhail Kugaev 9k. Result table.

Kim Ouweleen, European Correspondent for the E-Journal

Categories: Europe,Main Page
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Atari Go Club wins against Yu Go Club and Santa Monica Go Club in revived Traffic Cup Team Tourney

Friday May 22, 2015

After a seven-year hiatus, the Reiyukai America/Yu Go Club’s Traffic Cup returned on Saturday, May 16, when go players representing the Yu 2015.05.22_Traffic-Cup1Go Club (by Reiyukai America in Pasadena), and the Santa Monica Go Club visited the Atari Go Club in Arcadia for a team tournament.

Each team played two games against other teams. Atari Go Club tied against the Yu Go Club, and defeated Santa Monica, Yu Go tied against both Atari and Santa Monica, while Santa Monica lost to Atari. As a result, the new holder of the Traffic Cup, a traveling trophy plaque, is now in the hands of Atari Go Club members.

“I remember playing the first Traffic Cup against Yu Go Club and can’t believe it’s been seven years since then,” said Andy Okun, President of the American Go Association, who played on the Atari Go Club team. “We should not wait another seven years but perhaps we can do this every seven months!”

2015.05.22_Traffic-Cup-players“This is such a wonderful local go event,” agreed Evan Cho of the Atari Go Club, who also served as the Tournament Director. “The three biggest go clubs in Southern California competing and interacting with each other – we’ve got to keep it going! Also hopefully, we can have more go clubs and players in the next Traffic Cup! ”

“Inter-club tournaments are a great opportunity to interact between club members,” added Toshiro Obara, organizer of Yu Go Club supported by Reiyukai America. “I look forward to more possibilities like this. Definitely our Yu Go Club will challenge the Atari Go Club to get back the plaque!”

The attending players were Rintaro Miyamoto 6d, Hendrik Rommeswinkel 1k, Stephen McLaughlin 5k, and Greg Kulevich 7k from the Yu Go Club. Andrew Liu 7d, Seth Cardew 2d, Andy Okun 1d, William Kim 8k representing the Atari Go Club. And Norman Tsai 7d, Daniel Su  11k, Derek Su 17k and David Su 19k from Santa Monica Go Club.

photos courtesy Yu Go Club; click here for a photo album from the tournament. For more information, contact Toshiro Obara at 626-356-8055, tobara@reiyukai-usa.org; Yu Go Club website.

EuroGoTV Update (1): the Netherlands, Czech Republic, Germany, Spain, France

Friday May 22, 2015

2015.05.22_csaba-meroThe Netherlands: The 44th edition of the Amsterdam International Go Tournament took place from May 14-17 in the European Go Cultural2015.05.22_Amsterdam Tournament Director Roel van Kollem handing out the prizes to the 3 winners Centre in Amstelveen, the Netherlands. The three top winners were Csaba Mero 6d (left) from Hungary in first place, Tanguy Le Calvé 6d from France in second and Yaqi Fu 6d from China in third. The tournament drew 101 participants and featured culinary bites between rounds by tournament director – and chef — Roel van Kollem. Evening activities included lectures by Guo Juan 5p on ‘Common Mistakes’ and a live Go-Quiz by Peter Brouwer 6d and Kim Ouweleen 4d of BadukMovies. Besides the 6-round main tournament, a Rapid tournament was played on Friday at Games-2015.05.22_amsterdam-herman-hiddema-IMG_20150516_103319Centre/Cafe Ludo in IJburg, a fancy new residential area of Amsterdam, an artificial island situated in the IJ-lake. With many sponsors this year, there were many additional prizes: DGT sponsored DGT-timer clocks, HOT Sports sponsored puzzles and games, DNM was the sponsor of the Rapid Tournament prize money, Guo Juan sponsored prizes for her online lessons and BadukMovies sponsored go t-shirts designed by Murugandi and Pro Memberships to their website. Photo albums of the Amsterdam tournament can be found here: Facebook page of the tournament; photos by Herman Hiddema 4d; photo album by Harry van der Krogt 2d; 5th and 6th round photos by EuroGoTV.
photos: (top right) Amsterdam Tournament Director Roel van Kollem handing out the prizes to the top winners; (left) playing area (by Herman Hiddema)

Czech Republic: The V.Valek Memorial, played from 5/16-5/17 in Ostrava, Czech Republic, was won by Ondrej Kruml 5d (right). He did 2015.05.22_Kruml 5dremarkably well by beating the the European Champion of 2012, Jan Simara 6d as well as the.Czech champion of 2013, Lukas Podpera 6d, who ended in second and third place respectively. Result table.

Germany: The 28th edition of the Dresdner Go-Turnier, played from 5/9-5/10 in Dresden, Germany, was won by Jin Zhou 6d. Second came Marc Landgraf 3d and third place was for Luxiaoji Chen 3d. Result table.

2015.05.22_Andreas UrbanSpain: The La Carboneria tournament, played on the 9th of May in Sevilla, Spain, was won by Jose-Manuel Pavon 7k. Second came Juan-Domingo Martin 10k and third was Alvaro Gutierrez 13k. Result table  photo: Andreas Urban 4k place 8 of 19

The 18th edition of the Madrid tournament, played from 5/9-5/10 in Madrid, Spain, was won by Lluis Oh 6d. Second came Yaqi Fu 6d and in third place ended Oscar Vazquez 2d. Result table.2015.05.22_Tanguy Le Calve 5d

France: Ze Grenoble Tournament, played from 5/1-5/3 in Grenoble, France, had 91 players participating and was won by Tanguy le Calvé 6d (right). In second place trailed Toru Imamura-Cornuejols 4d and third was Huu Phuoc Nguyen 2d. Result table.

Another tournament in Grenoble, the ‘Grenoble Internal’, took place a few days before, on the 29th of April, and saw Toru Imamura-Cornuejols 4d as the victor. Second came Longteng Chen 1d and third was Dominique Cornuejols 1d. Result table.

In the city of Toulouse, the Toulouse Continuous Tournament – Round 6 was played on the 8th of May. It was won by Thomas Dufour 3k, with Laurent Belmonte 4k on second place and Laurent Lamole 4k on third. Result table.
Tomorrow: Italy, Slovakia, Lithuania, Croatia and Russia.

Kim Ouweleen, European Correspondent for the E-Journal

Categories: Europe,Main Page
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Assistant Youth Editor Wanted

Friday May 22, 2015

We are looking for an assistant to help write youth related stories for the E-Journal.  An interest in reporting on youth activities, and helping spread go among kids and teens, is required. Duties would include editing submissions, and reporting on youth events.  Some experience writing is preferred, but not essential. We will pay $10 per published article. If interested, contact E-J Youth Editor Paul Barchilon at youth@usgo.org.