American Go E-Journal

UCSB Wins 2017 Collegiate Go League; New Season Starts October 7th

Tuesday September 19, 2017

University of California-Santa Barbara (UCSB) defeated University of Toronto 2-1 in the championship finals of the 2017 Collegiate Go League to claim their first ever CGL title. Entering the play18946948_1971904743055321_1206006521_ooffs as the 5th seed, UCSB defeated not only defending champions UCLA, but also upset 1st seed UC Berkeley enroute to the championship finals. While UCSB’s team didn’t contain well-known perennial powerhouse players that came up through the North American youth scene, they had one of the most rounded teams in terms of strength, giving them an edge over the competition. Live commentary of the Finals were provided by AGA’s Eric Lui 1p and Justin Teng 6d. In the 3rd/4th place match, University of Maryland defeated UC Berkeley 3-0 to claim 3rd place. This year’s CGL was the most competitive in history, with the average strength of most A-League teams hovering around 5 dan.

This year was also the first year the CGL introduced a B-League for kyu players who also want to get in on the competitive action. Lafayette College prevailed over University of Virginia 2-1, and then over University of Toronto’s B team 2-1 to claim the B-League championship title. In total, 20 teams across both leagues participated in the CGL.

The next season of the CGL begins on October 7th; if you and at least two other university students would like to play in the upcoming CGL season, read the rules and sign up by September 25th to be paired in the first round. New schools can join at any time during the regular season, with the top 6 teams in each league eligible to play in the championship playoffs at the end of the regular season.
- Justin Teng
photo: UCSB’s championship team; (left-to-right) Justin Shieh 5d, Rex Luan 6d, Stephen Hu 6d, and captain/club president Colin Liu 4d.

Categories: U.S./North America

The Power Report (1): Iyama evens Meijin Score; Iyama and Yamashita advance in Samsung Cup; Kisei leagues completed

Tuesday September 19, 2017

by John Power, Japan Correspondent for the E-Journal2017.09.19-Meijin 2 Iyama looks happy

Iyama evens Meijin Score:
The second game of the 42nd Meijin title match was held at the Hotel Chinzanso Tokyo, which is located in Bunkyo Ward, on September 12 and 13. The highlight of the game was a fierce fight that started on the first day. A large trade followed in which Iyama (W, right) took most of the top and Takao threatened to take most of the bottom. However, his moyo was too big. Iyama succeeded in breaking into it, so Takao resigned after White 146. This evens the score at 1-1. The third game will be played on September 21 and 22.

Iyama and Yamashita advance in Samsung Cup: The opening round of the 22nd Samsung Cup (officially, the Samsung Fire & Marine Insurance Cup World Go Masters) 2017.09.19-Samsung Iyama wins 3rd gamewas held at the Samsung Fire & Marine Insurance Global Campus in Goyang City, Gyeonggi Province on September 5 to 7. The “campus” is actually one of a number of training camps the Samsung group owns, and facilities rival those of a five-star hotel. The 1st round takes three days to play as it consists of eight double-elimination mini-leagues. There are four players in each league, and the top two players advance to the round of 16. The condition is two wins, which means a score of 2-0 or 2-1. Two Japanese players, Iyama Yuta and Yamashita Keigo 9P, scored 2-1 and made it to the next round. They were joined by seven Korean and seven Chinese players, including Ke Jie 9P and Lee Sedol 9P. The third Japanese representative, Komatsu Hideki 9P, who won a seat in the qualifying section for senior players, was eliminated with 1-2. The next round will be held on September 25.

Kisei leagues completed: The last games in the S League of the 42nd Kisei tournament were held recently. On September 7, Ichiriki Ryo 7P (W) beat Kono Rin 9P by resig. and Cho U 9P (B) beat So Yokoku 9P by resig. Ichiriki had already won the league in the previous round, 2017.09.19-Yamashita (R) wins third gamebut making a clean sweep of the league was undoubtedly satisfying. Cho’s win made sure that he kept his place. An important game was held on September 9 between Yamashita Keigo 9P and Murakawa Daisuke 8P. The winner would take second place in the league and, more important, gain a place in the irregular knockout to decide the challenger; the loser would lose his league place and drop to the A League. Taking black, Yamashita (right) won by 2.5 points. The final order in the S League is: 1st, Ichiriki, 5-0; 2nd, Yamashita, 3-2; 3rd, Cho U, 3-2; 4th, Kono Rin, 2-3; dropping out: Murakawa on 2-2 and So on 0-5.

Two key games in the A League were played on September 7. Takao Shinji 9P and Kyo Kagen (Xu Jiayuan in Pinyin) 4P were tied on 5-1. However, Takao was ranked number one and Kyo, as a newcomer to the league, was equal last, so to win the league Kyo needed not only to win his game but also to have Takao lose. The latter just made it: taking black, he eked out a half-point win over Yoda Norimoto 9P, so he won the league. Kyo (B) beat Hane Naoki 9P by resig. Although he missed qualifying for the knockout, Kyo earned a consolation prize: promotion to the S League. The top two players go up, so he will be joined by Takao – except if Takao becomes the challenger and wins the Kisei title, in which case Iyama would join Kyo in the S League. The S League promotion carried with it a promotion to 7-dan.

The play-off between the winners of the two B Leagues was held on September 14. Yo Seiki 7P (W), winner of B2, beat Shida Tatsuya 7P, winner of B1, by resig. This is how the final knockout looks: C League winner Motoki Katsuya 8P vs. Yo Seiki; the winner to play Takao; the winner to play Yamashita; the winner to meet Ichiriki in the final “best-of-three”. The quotes are there because three games will never be played. Ichiriki starts with a one-win advantage, so he needs only one win; his opponent can’t drop a game, so he has to win two straight. That won’t be easy: on current form, Ichiriki could claim to be the number three player after Iyama and Takao.
TOMORROW: Na of Korea wins 29th TV Asia; King of the New Stars; Promotions
Photos courtesy of the Nihon Ki-in

Categories: Japan,John Power Report

AlphaGo-AlphaGo Game 7: Go Seigen-like attachments, a 3-3 variation and a running fight

Friday September 15, 2017

“In this game we will see some Go Seigen-like attachments that White plays against a Black shimari,” says Michael Redmond 9p in his game 2017.09.15_ag-ag-thumb-7commentary on AlphaGo-AlphaGo Game 7. There’s also “an AlphaGo variation for the early 3-3 invasion, and after White makes a moyo there will be a running fight in the center.”

Click here for Redmond’s video commentary, just posted on the AGA’s YouTube channel and hosted by the AGA E-Journal’s Chris Garlock.

The video is produced by Michael Wanek and Andrew Jackson. The sgf file was created by Redmond, with editing and transcription by Garlock and Myron Souris.


“Give Me Liberties, or Give Me Death!” New site launched for 2018 Go Congress in Williamsburg, Virginia

Thursday September 14, 2017

The organizers of the upcoming 2018 Go Congress, which will be held in Williamsburg, Virginia at the College of William and Mary from July 212017.09.13_congress-site-launched – 28, have launched the updated Go Congress site for 2018. “There’s one very important thing everyone should do: go to the site now and make sure you’re signed up for the Go Congress newsletter,” says Nate Eagle, co-director of the 2018 Go Congress with Diego Pierrottet. “And check back often: we’re going to be updating the site frequently with new information and features.”

“When the idea of the National Go Center hosting a Congress was suggested, I was quite dubious, because I was worried about keeping focus on the newly opened National Go Center.” says Eagle. “But when Diego showed me the research he’d done into William & Mary as a venue, I changed my mind. William & Mary is a gorgeous location, with brick-lined sidewalks and luxurious shade, and it’s close to Colonial Williamsburg, Busch Gardens, and a lot of other great attractions. And the excitement of preparing to host Congress has been infectious around the NGC: a ton of people have volunteered to staff important positions and help make the event outstanding.”

Williamsburg, Virginia is convenient to three major airports in Newport News, Norfolk, and Richmond, and is also accessible via Amtrak’s Northeast Regional train. If you have any questions or are interested in volunteering, please contact either Diego Pierrottet or Nate Eagle.

Go Classified: Specialty go boards for sale

Thursday September 14, 2017

FOR SALE: Specialty go boards—platform board $140, catalpa board w/ drawers $200, decorative board with case $200.  All prices plus shipping from WV.  Email or call 304-820-3167 for photos and descriptions.  Payment by Paypal or credit card.

Categories: Go Classified

Redmond Reviews: Michael Redmond 9P vs Kyo Kagen 4P

Wednesday September 13, 2017

“This game features a move influenced by my study of the AlphaGo games, as well as a losing move in which I pull out stones that I had 2017.09.13_Redmond Review Intro Ep7previously decided to sacrifice,” says Michael Redmond 9P in his game commentary below, which accompanies the game’s video commentary, hosted by Chris Garlock of the AGA E-Journal. “What was I thinking?” asks Redmond.

The game was played on August 31, and it was the final of the Meijin A section. Redmond’s opponent was Kyo Kagen, Chinese name Hsu Chia Yuan. “Kyo was a 4P at the time, but the following week he was promoted to 7P for entering the S league of the Kisei tournament. S is the final 6-player round-robin that decides the challenger for the title.”


Categories: Redmond Reviews

Evanston tourney draws record crowd

Wednesday September 13, 2017

The Evanston (IL) Go Club hosted its second tournament of the year on September 9, drawing a record attendance of 45 players. There were 2017.09.13_evanstonplayers at every level, from 25k to 7d, and every age from under 10 to over 60.

“It was a great turnout!” said TD and club president Mark Rubenstein. “Typically we have around 30 players. There were only 20 people pre-registered for this one, so I was expecting around 30. But we had 25 walk-ins! Registration was a little overwhelming, but it went quite smoothly.”
2017.09.13_evanston2Players came from six states; Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Kentucky, Minnesota and California. “Special kudos to Steve Burrll for coming all the way from California just for the tournament! If there had been a prize for Most Miles Traveled, he would have won it hands-down.” said Rubenstein. “Twenty of the 45 players were first-time attendees. That’s an unusually high percentage of new players.”
First-place winners (left) were: Cong Chen 1d (4-0), Scott Gerson 6k (4-0), Stephanie Tan 10k (5-0).
Second place winners were: Jim Sun 1d (5-1), tie between Christopher Martin 4k (6-1) and Marcus Bates 3k (6-1), Daniel Lambert 10k (5-1).
“Special thanks to Yellow Mountain for providing awesome prizes!” said Rubenstein.
Categories: U.S./North America

Go Spotting: Pink Floyd exhibition in London

Wednesday September 13, 2017

“A simulated living-room showcase in the Pink Floyd exhibition at the V&A (Victoria and Albert Museum in London) features a cardboard box2017.09.13_members-only-mornings-the-pink-floyd-exhibition_960 of ‘Go the ancient oriental game’,” reports Rich Philp on Gotalk. Andrew Simons chimes in to report that “Apparently Syd Barrett did play Go, don’t know about the rest of the band; plus by a quirk of fate Charles Matthews (3 dan, Go author/teacher of many Cambridge students, myself included) now lives in the house he was born in. ” Click here for Barrett’s entry in the BGA’s register of go-playing celebrities. The Pink Floyd exhibit is open through October 15.
- Tony Collman

Categories: Go Spotting

2016 European Go Yearbook released

Wednesday September 13, 2017

Weighing in at a whopping 576 pages, the 2016 European Go Yearbook has recently been released. The first such Yearbook covers the biggest 2017.09.13_egc-yearbook2016-2and most important go happenings of 2016 in Europe, including: Interviews with newly promoted professionals Artem Kachanovskyi 1p and Antti Törmänen 1p; An extensive catalogue of all the National Championships in Europe, including reports on Main Championships, Women’s Championships and Youth Championships, accompanied by personal interviews with the champions; Reports and photos of major European tournaments and events, such as the 60th Polymetal European Go Congress, the 2nd European Go Grand Slam and the 3rd European Professional Qualification.

The Yearbook also features an in-depth chapter of 80 pages on AlphaGo and the Rise of Artificial Intelligence in Go, with game commentaries by Fan Hui 2p, Gu Li 9p, Zhou Ruiyang 9p and Myungwan Kim 9p. It also includes many game records and commentaries by top European players.

The European Go Yearbook 2016 was compiled and written by Kim Ouweleen 4 dan (right), also known as Murugandi. For a preview of the book, check out these three teasers: 2016 European Professional Qualification TournamentInterview with Antti Törmänen 1pNational Championships: Russia. Complete details on how to order are here.
- Chialing Chan

Shanglv Cup International City Go Tournament in Hangzhou, China

Monday September 11, 2017

The Hangzhou Branch of China Qiyuan is inviting US go players to participate in the Shanglv Cup, to take place between Oct. 27 and Nov. 1. You will need to supply transportation, but they will provide 5-star accommodations at a hotel in Hangzhou. In addition to the main tournament, which features prizes and ranks to players with sufficient standing, there are other side tournaments available: Male Doubles, Female Doubles, Male & Female Mixed Doubles, Family Doubles and Children’s Tournament (below 10 years’ old). Registration deadline is Sept. 30. For more information please e-mail, or the tournament contact, Di Yang at
- Jeff Shaevel, AGA National Tournament Coordinator