Four-time US Open Champion Jie Li 7D will provide live commentary on the key game between top seeds Myungwan Kim 9P and Yongfei Ge 7D — both two-time US Open winners themselves — in the Sweet 16 round of the Strong Players Online Tournament (SPOT1) at 1p this Saturday, May 1 on KGS. Ge lost to Kim at the 2009 US Go Congress and tells the E-Journal “I will try my best. To me, Kim is best at endgame, and I will try to make it complicated in mid-game.” Ge, who works as a software architect, spent some time studying go every day to prepare for his 2007 U.S. Open win after his first Open win in 2001. Over 500 watched Kim’s game on KGS last Saturday, and our sources say that he’s studying hard as well. Five of top eight seeds are in SPOT1’s upper half, while two are in the lower half due to first round upsets. Click here for the complete Sweet 16 matchups. An innovation of SPOT1 is the use of web cameras, enabling the players to see each other on Skype, which “was proposed by the sponsor of SPOT1, AGA President Allan Abramson,” reports TD Zhiyuan “Edward” Zhang. Players describe the web camera play as both “close to face-to-face playing” and “more formal than regular online games.” While it makes some “feel nervous but excited” the players also says it’s an “interesting experience” that “feels real.”
American Go E-Journal » U.S./North America
Thursday April 29, 2010
Thursday April 29, 2010
Sign-up for the 2010 US Go Congress in Colorado Springs is nearing the 100 mark, “over 20% of the way to our goal of 400+ attendees,” reports Congress Director Karen Jordan. Click here for details and here to register: “Plans are underway for the July 31-August 1 event and many of them depend on how many paid registrations we have,” says Jordan. Click here to see who’s coming.
Tuesday April 27, 2010
Photographer and former AGA President Phil Straus has posted a brief photo montage of fellow Philadelphia go player Matt Bengtson’s wedding to Seohee You last December, scored to a performance of Bach’s Goldberg Variations played by Bengtson, a pianist. “I was inspired by the minister’s talk,” Straus says. “He had been at the rehearsal dinner the night before, and the conversation went to go. No surprise to those of us who play the game. He learned that go is a game that has few rules, but takes a lifetime to learn. At the altar, he talked to the couple about how that’s true about marriage, too. I got to thinking about how it’s true for piano, as well. Only 88 keys, but…”
Monday April 26, 2010
The Seattle Go Center participated in the Seattle Cherry Blossom Festival April 16-18, doing outreach to festival attendees all three days. “In the mornings we had time for a few 13×13 games among our volunteers, but on Saturday and Sunday afternoon it got very busy” reports Center Manager Brian Allen. The AGA-rated Cherry Blossom Tournament on Saturday April 17 “was a little bit larger than last year,” Allen reports, with 18 players. Ben Hakala won the Dan Section, Abe Taylor the First Kyu Section, Frank Brown the Second Kyu Section, and Job Betcher the Third Kyu Section. Job went on to win the Children’s 13×13 Handicapped the next day. Owen Gow placed 2nd, and Jordon Betcher placed 3rd in the youth tournament.
- photos by Brian Allen; volunteers Bill Thompson (l) and Sam Wilhide at the Cherry Blossom Festival; Yuriko Miyake at the Cherry Blossom Tournament
Monday April 26, 2010
Nathan Harwit 3d and Luke Zhang 1d topped their divisions at the Boulder, CO, United States Youth Go Championship (USYGC) this past Saturday, April 24. Harwit, age 12, beat his twin brother Matthew to take the regional title. The boys have alternated as champion for the past four years, and this is their first year in the Senior Division. Nine-year-old Luke Zhang 1d took top honors in the Junior Division. Six-year-old Robin Luo 7k, also made a strong showing, winning a special trophy in the under 12 division. Winners Report: 1st: Nathan Harwit 3d; 2nd: Luke Zhang 1d; 3rd: Matthew Harwit 4d; 4th: Erwen Yu 13k; Special Under 12: Robin Luo 7k; Newcomers Award: Lenny Den 18k.
- Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor; photo: Prize winners relax after their matches at the Boulder USYGC. From left to right: Erwen Yu, Luke Zhang, Robin Luo, Lenny Den; photo by Dave Weiss
Sunday April 25, 2010
Chong Lee 6D topped the Chicago Spring Tournament Saturday, while Will Zhou 7D won the Senior Youth Tournament and Haisong Yang 5k the Junior Youth. “After 60 tournaments in the same venue, we took a chance and moved to the new Chicago Go Center for the 61st,” reports longtime tournament director Bob Barber. “By moving to the suburbs, we lost some people, and gained some others. Everybody was very impressed with the Center, which is the best thing to happen to go in Chicago in 30 years.” There were 34 players.
Winner’s Report: Senior Youth Winner: ZHOU, Will, 7d; Junior Youth Winner: YANG, Haisong, 5k. HANDICAP TOURNAMENT: Tie 1st Place Dan: LEE, Chong, 6d
HUYNH, Lee, 1d; 1st Place High Kyu: SOLBERG, Richard, 3k; 1st Place Mid Kyu: NORMAN, Matthew, 9k; 1st Place Low Kyu: FISCHLER, Mark, 11k
Photo: Will Zhou 7D (l) vs. Daniel 10k; Haisong Yang (l) vs. Henry Zhou 13k; photo by Mark Rubenstein
Sunday April 25, 2010
Thirty two top players battled it out on KGS over the weekend to make the Sweet Sixteen in the inaugural N.A. Strong Players Online Tournament (SPOT1). Over 500 watched Myungwan Kim 9P(CA) play Hugh Zhang 6d (CA) Saturday, with Kim notching his latest victory in a 14-game winning streak in AGA tourneys. Also making the Sweet Sixteen – to be played next Saturday, May 1 – were Yongfei Ge 7D, Yuan Zhou 7D, Yue Zhang 7D, Curtis Tang 7D, Xinyu Tu 7D, Changlong Wu, Yinli Wang 6D, Eric Lui 7D, Jie Liang 7D, Calvin Sun 7D, Sarah Yu 6D, Jung Lee 7D, Jianing Gan 6D and Hugh Zhang 6D. The final slot will be filled by the winner of Monday’s Zhaonian ‘Michael’ Chen- Yixian Zhou game.
Saturday’s “main event” will undoubtedly be the face-off between Yongfei Ge and Myungwan Kim, both two-time U.S. Open Champions. Saturday’s winners proceed to Sunday’s Elite 8 round and winners there qualify for the Final 4 round. Spot1 is sponsored by the American Go Association; a total of $1,500 in prizes will go to the top three players – $1,000 for champion, $400 for runner up, and $100 for third place. Click here for complete results and pairings.
– Zhiyuan “Edward” Zhang, Tournament Director; photo: Yinli Wang 6D (IN) and Sarah Yu 6D (ON), undefeated in the SPOT1 First Round, finished on top of Teams C and G entering the Sweet 16 round
Saturday April 24, 2010
Hundreds tuned in Friday night to watch the action in the N.A. Strong Players Online Tournament (SPOT1) Canadian qualifier and Premiere round. Jin “Sarah” Yu 6D, Daniel Gourdeau 6D and Jianing Gan 6D made the SPOT1 Top 32, while Eric Lui 7D (MD), Yuan Zhou 7D (MD) and Carson Tu 7D (NJ) are just one win from the Sweet 16 round after winning their games in the First Round. SPOT1 is sponsored by the American Go Association, with $1,500 in prizes for the top three winners. Forty players from Canada, Mexico and the U.S. registered; after double-elimination in the first round, two players from each team will advance to the Sweet 16 round, scheduled for next Saturday, May 1st. For most of the players, this was the first time playing in front of a web camera, but Patrick Lung from Canada said “It didn’t matter; I was more concentrated on my board than my opponent.” Nick Jhirad from DC said that opponent Carson Tu’s “responses to my attacks on the right were very good,” adding that “one big mistake at the end cost me the game, but I played better than I thought.” Daniel Gourdeau, a 5th grade high school student from Quebec, said that “I was proud of move 41, and move 93 is the last nail in the coffin.” Gourdeau’s plan for his next game is to “Play thick, leave few weaknesses.” Click here for the SPOT1 First Round schedule.
- Zhiyuan “Edward” Zhang, Tournament Director
Friday April 23, 2010
Washington go organizer Hal Small is hosting a special 2-day workshop with Japanese professional Tadashi Sasaki 8P on May 15-16. “Those of you who attended last year’s U.S. Go Congress already know that Sasaki-sensei is a fabulous teacher as well as a delightful person,” says Small, “but what may come as a pleasant surprise is that this workshop will be free!” Small reports that the workshop is “a gift to the local DC area go community by the organizers of the past Go Congresses held in the DC area,” and will be offered on a first-come, first-served basis, with preference given to DC-area players. Space is limited; contact Small soon if you would like to attend: firstname.lastname@example.org “Please specify if you would like to come for one or both days, and if you wish to participate or to just audit.” Beginning 10a each day, the workshop will start with 3-on-one simuls with Sasaki, while other players play each other and record their games. Then after lunch (included), Sasaki will review games. “Saturday evening we will have a banquet in Sasaki-sensei’s honor,” adds Small. “This will be at appropriate cost to participants, details to be worked out later.”
Friday April 23, 2010
The Strong Players Online Tournament (SPOT1) launches tonight, April 23, at 7P on KGS, with three matches between U.S. players, as well as six Canadian players battling for three slots in the Top 32. The first major online open tournament in recent years has attracted a lot of interest from players and fans alike. Among the thirty-five strong players from Canada, the United States and Mexico are Korean 9-dan professional — and two-time US Open Champion — Myung Wan Kim, Canadian Yongfei Ge 7D, also a two-time US Open winner, and 2006 NAIM Champion Zhaonian “Michael” Chen 7D from New Jersey. “Every team is tough,” said Yixian Zhou 7D from Los Angeles, better-known as “missbear” on KGS. “But I will have fun to learn from the strong players.” Changlong Wu 7D from North Carolina encourages fans to “Come and watch, and join the AGA today.” The tournament continues over the weekend. Click here for the pairings. schedule and results.
– Zhiyuan “Edward” Zhang, SPOT1 Tournament Director