American Go E-Journal » U.S./North America

Player Profile: The Return of Kang

Tuesday April 29, 2014

by Keith L. Arnold, hka

A soft voice slowed me as I rushed past at last weekend’s first Washington Open Baduk Championship, which was organized by Allan Abramson, Gary Smith, Todd Heidenreich, Andy Okun and myself. I turned to see Shin Kang, who embraced me like an old friend. Mr. Kang, of Ellicott City, Maryland, was the hero of Baltimore go players when I began playing back in the 1980′s, and I was extremely honored and touched that he recalled me from our few meetings over the years.

Shin Kang (at left in photo) was the highest-rated player in the U.S. during the late 1970s, above even the legendary Takeo Matsuda of New York, and Young Paeng of Pittsburgh, an old rival he asked about on Sunday. Kang was the Eastern Champion, or “Honinbo” from 1976 to 1978 and won the Maryland Open for its first 5 years, 1974 to 1978, and again in 1980. He lost in the phone relay US Championship to Kyung Kim of San Francisco in 1976, and, for the most part, paid his own way to get out to San Francisco in 1977 to try again face-to-face, but once again was defeated by Mr. Kim; their games were commented on by no less a luminary than Haruyama 9 dan. Meanwhile, he sponsored a teaching tour by Kim In 8P, and was top board in a telex match with Taipei.

In 1978, JAL sponsored the U.S. Championship in New York, but Mr. Kang’s opponent was not Mr. Kim but Shigeo Matsuhara of Los Angeles. Mr. Matsuhara’s victory in the Western Championship was considered quite an upset; after all, he had been defeated that year in the Los Angelos Open by a fifteen-year-old kid named Michael Redmond.

Mr. Kang won two straight games to become US Champion, and went on to represent the US in the first World Amateur Go Championship, along with Mr. Matsuhara, Mr. Kim and team captain Richard Dolen. Sadly for us, work pushed tournament go out Mr. Kang’s life for many years. Now retired, we can only hope we will see more of the 66-year-old former importer and wholesaler.

Kang won his first game at last weekend’s first Washington Open Baduk Championship, lost his second, but then won rounds 3 and 4 and I was excited to see him on board 2 for the final round. I was ecstatic when a re-pairing put him on Board One against the undefeated Andy Liu (at right in photo). I showed E-Journal Managing Editor — and Board 1 game recorder — Chris Garlock a listing on my IPad of Kang’s impressive Maryland Open record as Andy walked by, took a look and softly exclaimed “Oh, wow!” at the record of his fellow Maryland Open champion so many years before his birth.

Mr. Kang greeted Andy with a combination of respect, fellowship and, I think, pride, in his role in bringing American go to a place where this young man could sit across from him, “So, you are the pro,” he smiled. “I look forward to receiving a good lesson.” Liu 1p respectfully but strongly responded “We are equals here.” It was a wonderful moment, one of the first generation of great American go players, enjoying the chance to see what has grown from the seeds he planted, and today’s pioneer, recognizing and appreciating their shared and ongoing journey.
- photos by Chris Garlock (top right) and Phil Straus (bottom left) 

Categories: U.S./North America
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Mingjiu Jiang 7P Summer Go Camp in CA

Tuesday April 29, 2014

Mingjiu Jiang 7P will lead a Summer Go Day Camp July 7-11 in Mountain View, CA. Attendance is limited to “All interested in go,” with 16 places available, at $300 each. The camp will run 10a-5p daily; lunch and snacks are included. Email mingjiu7p@hotmail.com for more info or click here for a registration form; registration form and checks must be sent in before May 31 to: Mingjiu Jiang, 1289 Lane Ave. Mountain View, CA 94040.

Categories: U.S./North America
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Boulder Kids Club Turns Ten

Monday April 28, 2014

The Boulder Kids and Teens Go Club celebrated its tenth anniversary on Easter.  “Dave Weiss and I are both Jewish,”  says Paul Barchilon, who co-founded the club with Weiss, “so we had no idea it was Easter when we scheduled our first meeting, back in 2004. A few kids actually did show up though, and since then, we have grown and thrived.  We still try to celebrate each anniversary with cake – it is a kids club after all.”

“We are proud of all of our students, and even though not everyone sticks with it, we love introducing the game to kids who have never heard of it.  The library has been an integral part of our success – promoting our events, giving us resources, and letting us store equipment there.  We play in a very visible area, so passersby often stop and ask about go, and many of them end up learning to play.”

This year’s cake was decorated with Junior Mints and Mentos (right), and is pictured with three longtime veterans.  Kellin Pelrine 6d (left) first came to the club when he was 11.  Now 18, he gives stones to almost everyone at club. Matthew Harwit 5d (in red) and his twin brother Nathan 4d (in green) both started around the age of 8.  Many kids have come and gone over the years, and the club has at times attracted as many as 30 players in a given session.
- photo by Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor

$200 Go Congress Youth Scholarships Offered

Monday April 28, 2014

The American Go Foundation (AGF) is offering $200 youth scholarships to this year’s US Go Congress.  Interested youth must write an essay on why they want to go; the application deadline is May 30th. Twenty-five scholarships are available, and up to 15 awardees will be selected by June 1. Five scholarships are available to residents of Canada or Mexico. Applications received after May 30th will be placed in a lottery with the remaining scholarships  awarded at random from qualifying essays.  The scholarships are available for youth who are under 18.  For more information, and to apply, click here.  - Story and photo by Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor. Photo: Calvin Sun 7d  plays Lionel Zhang 6d, in the Youth Room at the  2013 Congress.


Andy Liu 1P Sweeps Washington Baduk Open

Sunday April 27, 2014

Andy Liu 1P took the first Washington Open Baduk Championship with a 5-0 sweep on April 26-27. Displaying his customary sharp and speedy play — rarely using more than half the 60-minute basic time — Liu (right) dominated his opponents, winning most of his games by resignation. The young American pro was characteristically modest, however. When retiree Kang Shin 7D, a powerhouse who won multiple titles in the 1970′s, cheerfully told Liu “You’ll give me a lesson” as they sat down to play in the final round, Liu quietly replied, “We’re all equals here.”   Organizers were pleased with the turnout and the venue at the Korean U.S. Science Cooperation Center in Vienna, VA, as well as the addition of a new major East Coast tournament to the annual go calendar. “We’re especially grateful to Scorpion Sports, the Korean Embassy, the Korea Amateur Baduk Association and all the volunteers and sponsoring organizations who put on this great event,” said AGA President Andy Okun. “Ambassador Suh Daewon’s vision of all the different go communities coming together took a great first step with the successful launch of the Washington Open,” said Allan Abramson, who directed the tournament. “I’m looking forward to many more years of joint efforts with him and KABA.” Todd Heidenreich was the Assistant TD. See below for the winner’s report, link to the crosstab, and the Board 1 game records for rounds 4 & 5.
- photos by Phil Straus (right) and Chris Garlock (left); click here for Straus’ tournament photo album.

Winner’s Report (click here for tournament crosstab):
Open Section (7d+):
1st: Andy Liu 1P; 2nd: Michael Chen 7d; 3rd: Li Siyuan 7d; 4th: Kevin Huang 7d; 5th: Changlong Wu 7d.
Dan A (4-6d): 1st: Bo Huang 5d; nd: Chang S Lee 4d; 3rd: Justin Ching 5d
Dan B (1-3d): 1st: Kuo Hung Ton 2d; 2nd: Julian Erville 1d; 3rd: Chenchen Luo 2d
Kyu A (1-5k): 1st: Benjamin Hong 3k; 2nd: John Q Zhao 3k; 3rd: Weixin Wang 4k
Kyu B (6-10k): 1st: Bob Crites 9k; 2nd: Kyung Up Moon 8k
Kyu C (11-15k): Dierdre Golash 13k; 2nd: Alvin Chen 11k
Kyu D (16k+): 1st: Sophia Wang 21k; 2nd: Alex Kuang 16k

Game Records, Board 1, Rounds 4 & 5
2014.04.27_WOBC-Rd4-B1-Liu-Huang
2014.04.27_WOBC-Rd5-B1-Liu-Shin

 

 

Categories: U.S./North America
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VT Spring Tourney Small But Fun

Sunday April 27, 2014

Attendance at the Vermont Spring Go Tournament ”was sparse, with just 9 players,” reports organizer Peter Schumer, “but everyone brought their ‘A’ game and made for a fun and exciting day.” The event was held on campus at Middlebury College on Saturday, April 26. Prizes were awarded to the top four finishers plus two “fighting spirit” awards “to those whose results might have seemed disappointing,” adds Schumer.  The top finishers were:  1st: Milan Mladenovic 7k (3-0); 2nd: David Felcan 2d (2-1); 3rd: Daniel Steinbrook 3k (2-1).

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Andy Liu 1P & Kevin Huang 7D Lead Washington Open Baduk Championship

Saturday April 26, 2014

Andy Liu 1P (right) leads the first Washington Open Baduk Championship, 3-0 going into the final two rounds in Vienna, VA this weekend. Kevin Huang 7D is also 3-0 so the two are sure to meet on Sunday. Top-board games will be broadcast on KGS starting at 9:30a EST. Other top 2-game winners were Elaine Jiang 6D, Li Siyuan 7D, Zhaonian Chen 7D, Wu Changlong 7D (left in photo), Stephanie Yi and Kang Shin 7D. Click here for standings as of Round 3: Andy Liu 8d-Park In 2D and Liu Jian 2D-Stephen Webb 25k. See below for game records for Board 1 Rounds 1-3. 88 players turned out for the first day of play at the newest major AGA event, co-hosted by the Korean Amateur Baduk Association (KABA) and the American Go Association (AGA), and organized by the NOVA Go Club, the Baltimore Go Club, and the Korean-American Go Association.
2014.04.26_WOBC-Rd1-B1-Siyuan-Yin
2014.04.26_WOBC-Rd2-B1-Changlong-Liu
2014.04.26_WOBC-Rd3-B1-Liu-Chen
- report/photo/game records by Chris Garlock

 

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Ambassador Suh Dae-won Receives First Washington Open Baduk Award

Saturday April 26, 2014

The first award of the Washington Open Baduk Championship was announced after just one round on the first day of play. Tournament Director Allan Abramson (right) presented retired Ambassador Suh Dae-won of Korea with an award recognizing his work promoting the game of go. Ambassador Suh played a key role bringing the annual Cotsen Open to the Korean Cultural Center in Los Angeles in recent years (dates were recently confirmed for 2014-2016), facilitated the organizing of the first Washington Open Baduk Championship this weekend in Northern Virginia – where nearly 100 players turned out Saturday — and is now in discussions about an event in Europe. “Bringing together the various go communities in our country has long been a dream of ours and efforts like this show just how far we have come,” said American Go Association president Andy Okun. “I’m very honored to receive this award,” said Ambassador Suh. “The Korean Amateur Baduk Association is committed to developing baduk in the United States. As the world’s largest economy and because of its huge influence worldwide this is a very important place to grow this global game. Thanks to all the organizers of this event for your dedication and hard work to make this event a success.” In addition to Abramson, Keith Arnold of the Baltimore Go Club was recognized, as was Myungwan Kim 9P. Also on hand was Korean Minister for Economic Affairs Gheewhan Kim, who declared himself “Very happy to see so many people playing the game in this country,” adding that “our embassy hopes to see this event continue next year and on into the future.”
- report/photo by Chris Garlock

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Washington Open Baduk Championship Expecting Strong Field This Weekend

Thursday April 24, 2014

Attendance is expected to be near 100 at this weekend’s Washington Open Baduk Championship in Northern Virginia, reports organizer Allan Abramson.  Top players so far include Mingming Yin 1P (right), Zhaonian Chen 8d, Charles Choi 7d, James Park 7d, Changlong Wu 7d, Liang Yu 7d, Yuan Zhou 7d, Xinying Elaine Jiang 6d, Josh Lee 6d and Zhiyuan Edward Zhang 6d, “with plenty of players of all strengths ensuring a good field for everyone,” Abramson promises. He’s also planning to ask strong players to volunteer for simuls, “so everyone who wants a simul will get one on Sunday.” Top boards will be broadcast live on KGS; anyone interested in helping record/broadcast can email journal@usgo.org.

Players are competing for a top prize of at least $1,200 and cash prizes for every section. Myungwan Kim 9P and Sohyun Park 3P will give lectures for both dan and kyu players on Saturday night, followed by a rapid tournament, and the professionals will do game reviews and simuls on Sunday afternoon. The tournament will be held at the Korea-U.S. Science Cooperation Center (1952 Gallows Road, Suite 330) in Vienna, VA and is sponsored by the Embassy of the Republic of Korea, the Korean Cultural Center – DC, and Scorpion Sport Inc. in L.A. It is co-hosted by the Korean Amateur Baduk Association (KABA) and the American Go Association (AGA), and organized by the NOVA Go Club, the Baltimore Go Club, and the Korean-American Go Association. There’s no entry fee but AGA membership is required and lunch is free.

Click here to register. Organizers have negotiated a discounted rate with Extended Stay America (8281 Willow Oaks Corporate Drive, Fairfax VA 22031), 4.5 miles from the playing site; call 703-204-0088 and ask for the NOVA Go Club rate, or email MRD@extendedstay.com.
photo by Chris Garlock
Correction: Mingming Yin’s rank has been updated to 1P (4/27) 

Categories: U.S./North America
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AGA City League Round 4 Set for Saturday

Thursday April 24, 2014

The fourth round in the AGA City League is set for this Saturday, April 26th on Pandanet.  Click here for the pairings: A LeagueB LeagueC League. “As always catch the action live on game day at 3PM EST on Pandanet using the new GoPanda2 software,” reports TD Steve Colburn. Games will be played in the AGA City League room.