American Go E-Journal » World

Won Seogjin 9P Gets Another Chance to Dance

Friday November 16, 2012

Does Won Seogjin 9P’s promise to dance Gangnam style if he won in the Samsung Cup also apply to the LG Cup? Won (l), known as ‘Won Punch’ for his powerful haymaker, promised his fans he’d do his version of South Korean pop artist PSY’s megahit if he defended his Samsung Cup title earlier this year, but the lighthearted hopes of many go fans were dashed when Park Junghwan 9P eliminated Won in the Samsung quarter finals. Now Won will play Shi Yue 5P for the LG Cup title, reigniting hopes that Won will have a chance to show off his dance moves if he wins the LG. Shi defeated Kang Dongyun 9P to advance to the final, marking another challenge by a member of the “Chinese Tiger Club Generation” so called because of their young age and fierce fighting styles. Won bested Choi Cheolhan 9P in his bid to repeat his championship run from last year. The 17th LG Cup will be decided by a best-of-3 match in mid-February 2013. Games will be broadcast live on Baduk TV.
Adapted from a report on Go Game Guru; click here for game records and more information.

Note (11/18): this report has been updated to reflect that Won is not defending the LG title (as originally reported), just playing in the final. Neither Won or Shi have won the LG Cup before, nor played in the final. Title holder Jiang Weijie didn’t make it through to the finals, because it’s a straight-out tournament, rather than a challenger league + title match.

 

 

 

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Lee Sedol and Gu Li Sweep to Samsung Cup Finals

Thursday November 15, 2012

On November 12 and 14, Lee Sedol 9P of Korea and Gu Li 9P of China swept the 17th Samsung Cup semifinals, both defeating their opponents 2-0. Gu and Lee now proceed to the Cup finals, which will be played December 11-13 in Shanghai (not Korea, as originally reported)  and broadcast live on Baduk TV. Interestingly, the two superstars have only met in two international tournament finals, which account for 7 of their past 30 games. The two are neck and neck at 4-3 in Gu’s favor in international finals; Gu won the 13th LG Cup in 2009 2-0 and Lee won the 3rd BC Card Cup 3-2 in 2011. Gu has a slight lead in their overall head-to-head, with a 15-14 record. This finals series will decide who takes the lead from here. Their 29th game during the Samsung Group Stage resulted in a spectacular quadruple ko, which was ruled a draw and Gu won the rematch to pull ahead by one game.
- adapted from a report on GoGameGuru, which includes extensive reports, photos and game records from the Samsung Cup; photo: Lee Sedol (left) and Gu Li (right) with famous Korean musician and amateur go player Kim Janghoon at the 17th Samsung Cup semifinals.

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Yamashita Keigo 9P Wins 37th Meijin in Decisive 7th Game

Thursday November 15, 2012

Almost three months after the 37th Meijin title match started, Yamashita Keigo 9P prevailed in the decisive final game on November 12 and 13 in Kofu, Yamanashi, Japan, successfully defending his Meijin title for the first time. As if trying to prove a point after Hane Naoki 9P forced a seventh game, Yamashita started a severe attack around move 60 and skillfully carried the momentum from one attack to another, winning convincingly in just 138 moves. No doubt Yamashita’s focus will now shift to taking the Honinbo title back from Iyama Yuta, but first, there should be a little time to sit back and enjoy some Yamanashi wine.
- adapted from a report on GoGameGuru, which includes game records for all seven games.

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Sun Naijing Wins Trip to SportAccord World Mind Games

Saturday November 10, 2012

Sun Naijing of China will join other winners of online tournaments in bridge, chess, draughts, and xiangqi (Chinese Chess) in observing the world’s best players in action at the SportAccord World Mind Games (SAWMG) in Beijing next month. Sun won the trip in the online adjunct to the upcoming World Mind Games, out of a field of 688 go players from 48 countries, ranging from Argentina to Zimbabwe, with more than half from Japan, which produced last year’s online winner. Sun, who hails from Hefei in Anhui Province, started playing go at age nine and kept it up through university studies and subsequent employment. ‘Go never leaves me,’ he says. In a go career spanning nearly four decades he has won numerous provincial amateur tournaments in Anhui and has thrice finished among the top ten in the massive Evening News Cup, China’s premier amateur event. In 1996 he defeated Chen Linxin 9P in the pro-amateur part of that event. ‘I learn a lot by playing go,’ Mr Sun adds. ‘I like it.’

Sponsored by Pandanet and played on Pandanet-IGS, some 5,400 games were played in this event; other winners include:
Regional winners: Mariya Zakhachenko (Ukraine), Fernando Aguilar
(Argentine), Tamai Kazuki (Japan); each winning a digital camera.
Lottery winners (prize from Pandanet): Dragan Dubakovic (Serbia), Irwin Vinicio Sanchez Chinchuña (Ecuador), Ueda Tatsuya (Japan); each winning an iPad.
Lottery winners (prize from SportAccord): Jeremy Chiu (USA), Igor Burnaevskiy (Russia); each winning a Samsung tablet computer.  Tzvetomir Tzvetanov (France), Nakatomi Nobuo (Japan); each winning a Swatch watch.

This tournament is expected to be held again in 2013 and 2014, possibly with an earlier start time to allow more people to play.  Watch for announcements in the E-Journal, on the IGF website, and on Pandanet website.

- adapted from a report in Ranka Online, the bulletin of the International Go Federation; includes reporting by Thomas Hsiang

Li He 3P Bests Rui Naiwei 9P to Win Bingsheng Cup

Monday November 5, 2012

Nineteen-year-old Li He 3P bested the legendary Rui Naiwei 9P on November 3rd to take top honors at this year’s Bingsheng Cup. She defeated Rui, arguably the best female player in the world, via resignation in the final to win the title. The former champion, Korean Park Jieun 9P was defeated earlier in a match with Chinese player Yu Zhijing 2P by a narrow 1.5 point margin.

Held at Qionglong Mountain in Suzhou, China, the 4-round tournament is a women’s knockout for 16 players, first held in 2010. The 2012 field included players from China, Korea, Japan, Taiwan, Europe, North America, and Oceania. The Cup was dominated by China, however, and after only two rounds the Chinese players had defeated participants from every other country.

Li He took home about $32,000 US along with a promotion from 3P to 5P in addition to her title.

Adapted from a report on Go Game Guru; click here for game records and more information.

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Korea’s Seung Joo Han Wins KPMC; US Places 32nd

Sunday November 4, 2012

Seung Joo Han of Korea won the 7th Korean Prime Minister Cup, held October 27-28 at Kwangju in Korea. Yuqing Hu of Chinawas second and Yongfei Ge of Canada was an impressive third, edging out by one SOSOS point Japan’s Nagatoki Kinoshita (4th); Hong Kong’s NaiSan Chan (5th) rounded out the top five winners . Matthew Burrall of the US was 32nd in a 70-player field (click here for final standings); click here for Ranka’s interview with him. Ranka’s coverage also includes tournament reports and includes interviews with Artem Kachanovskyi (Ukraine), Shirin Mohammadi (Iran), Mateusz Surma (Poland), Kinoshita Nagatoki (Japan) and Geert Groenen (The Netherlands). Yongfe Ge photo by Ito Toshiko.

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Korea Wins Pair Go Championships; US is 15th

Sunday November 4, 2012

The Korean Pair Go team of Jang Yun Jeong and Lee Hoseung swept to victory in the 23rd International Pair Go Championships, held over the weekend in Tokyo, Japan.  Japanese pairs dominated the rest of the top-ten finishers, with only two other countries placing; Chinese Taipei in 8th and Russia in 10th. The U.S. team of Amy Su and Lionel Zhang was 15th, edged by the Thailand pair in 14th, while European Pair Go champs Klara Zaloudkova and Jan Hora were 17th. Click here for complete results as well as game records. Note: the Chinese team was unable to participate at the last moment, so their last-place result is because of forfeits, not on-the-board losses.

 

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Chinese Professional Go Player and Pioneer Chen Zude Dies

Saturday November 3, 2012

Chen Zude, one of the first Chinese nine-dan professionals, died of pancreatic cancer in Beijing on November 1. He was 68.

“Though we’ve lost one of the go world’s brightest lights,” said AGA President Andy Okun. “We’re fortunate that Chen Zude inspired so many to follow in his path, leaving a community that, while saddened by this loss, is larger and stronger than ever.”

Credited as the first modern Chinese player to defeat a Japanese nine-dan (Iwata Tatsuaki) in an even game, Chen grew up during the “Cultural Revolution” era and was a self-taught player as well as a politically savvy go promoter, bringing the game from the status of “bourgeois decadence” to that a mind sport of national pride.  He is often considered the father of modern go in China and as go became integrated into the sports ministry in China, Chen was selected as the first president of China Qiyuan when it was established in 1992 to promote go as a profession.  He continued in that position until 2003 when it was passed on to Wang Runan.  Chen was also the first president of the Chinese Weiqi Association, a body that represents go on the international scene. In 1980, when Chen was playing in the “Xintiyu Bei” (New Sports Cup), he vomited blood and was diagnosed with stomach cancer, which he battled for 32 years.

“Because of his health, Chen never visited the US, but he often expressed his hope that the West would get to appreciate the fascinating game to which he devoted his life,” reports  International Go Federation (IGF) vice president Thomas Hsiang, who met Chen in Beijing in 2008.  “He always gladly hosted visitors from the West, giving them copies of his books and offering the full cooperation of China Qiyuan.” Chen’s study of fuseki “triggered the systematic study of fuseki both in China and Japan,” adds Frank Fukuda. “He also advocated and emphasized the cultural aspects of go, saying that it would bring peace and help people conduct themselves well.”
photo: Chen (second from left) in 2008 with Thomas Hsiang (second from right), Hua Yigang (then president of the China Qiyuan) and Hsiang’s wife, Joy (left).

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37th Meijin Goes The Distance

Saturday November 3, 2012

In a seesaw match that’s been fought over 3,500 miles, the venerable Meijin tournament — one of the ‘big titles’ on the Japanese domestic circuit — now comes down to one final match November 12-13. Challenger Hane Naoki 9P forced a deciding Game 7 after defeating current title holder Yamashita Keigo 9P in the sixth game October 31 and November 1. The battle for the title of 37th Meijin has been waged from end to end of the island nation, beginning with the first match August 30-31 in sticky Tokyo, which Yamashita won, adding another notch to his 33-17 record against Hane. The contest then headed north to cooler Hokkaido, where Hane leveled the match at 1-1 on September 20-21. Having visited one end of the country, the players then traveled all the way south to the other end for Game 3 in Miyazaki, on September 27-28, where Hane won again to pull ahead 2-1 in the series. The match then moved back to the center of Japan, to Sendai, Miyagi, for Game 4 on October 10-11, where Yamashita dug deep and clawed his way back to even the score at 2-2. The Meijin title match was now almost back to where it started – both in terms of the score and the location – evened up and on the outskirts of Tokyo overlooking Sagami Bay, in Kanagawa Prefecture. This time, Yamashita turned the tables on Hane, edging ahead 3-2. For Game 6, the action moved to Atami, Shizuoka on October 31 and November 1, where Hane won Game 6 to stretch the Meijin title match out to a seventh and final game. The battle is now set to climax in Yamanashi, the top grape and wine region in Japan, where Yamashita and Hane will play one more game to decide who will lay final claim to the title of 37th Meijin. Click here for a more detailed blow-by-blow report on the tournament thus far, including game records (scroll down to “The 37th Meijin tour”).
- adapted from reporting on Go Game Guru

 

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Lee Hobum Stops Tan Xiao’s Repeat Run in Nongshim Cup

Saturday November 3, 2012

Korea’s Lee Hobum 3P stopped the run by China’s Tan Xiao 7P to repeat his 4-win streak in this year’s Nongshim Cup. Tan racked up three wins before falling to the talented young Korean, who will face the next player in line for Japan when the tournament resumes in November. For the first time, Lee Changho, who won the first six Nongshim tournaments with 19 wins and 3 losses, won’t participate. Lee said he felt he wasn’t in top form and recommended that Park Junghwan 9P take his spot on the team. The Nonshim is a team event between China, Japan and Korea, which uses a win-and-continue format between 5-member teams. The first players of each team play each other and continue playing until defeated, when the second player then takes over and so on, until a team is out of players. Korea has dominated this event, winning it 10 times, while China has won twice and Japan just once.
Adapted from a report on Go Game Guru; click here for game records and more information.
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