American Go E-Journal

The Power Report: Cho U Wins Crucial Game In Meijin League; Takao Takes Lead In Honinbo Title Match; Kono To Challenge Iyama For Gosei Title; New Professional Couple

Sunday June 9, 2013

by John Power,  Japan Correspondent for the American Go E-Journal

Cho U Wins Crucial Game In Meijin League: Thanks to defeating his most formidable opponent, Cho U 9P (right) is a lot closer to ecoming the challenger for the 38th Meijin title. In a game played on June 1, Cho (taking black) defeated Iyama Yuta Honinbo by resignation, improving his record to 6-0 and keeping the sole lead. Iyama had been one of just two players with only one loss, but, with his score now 5-2, the best he can hope for is a tie for first, but that will happen only if Cho loses both his remaining games; his opponents are Takao Shinji 9P and Kono Rin 9P. The other player with one loss is Hane Naoki 9P, who is on 4-1; he has already played Cho, so he has to rely on the above-mentioned pair for help in catching up. Incidentally, Saturday games are quite unusual, but Iyama is extremely busy, what with Honinbo games in successive weeks. On June 6, Sakai Hideyuki 8P (B) defeated Yuki Satoshi Judan by resignation. This was Sakai’s first win in the league, to six losses, while Yuki still has not opened his account. He is now 0-6 and has suffered a dismal 16 losses in a row, spread over three Meijin leagues.

Takao Takes Lead In Honinbo Title Match: All the momentum now seems to be with Takao Shinji 9P (left) in the 68th Honinbo title match. In the third game, played in the Hokkaido city of Kushiro on June 5 & 6, he defeated the defending champion Iyama Yuta and took a 2-1 lead. Playing black, Takao forced a resignation after 167 moves. In its report, Go Weekly was unable to specify a losing move for Iyama; he apparently played no dubious moves after the opening, so Takao must have gained an advantage in the first fight of the game, in which he sacrificed corner stones to set up a squeeze on the outside. Iyama has now lost three important games on the trot; the fourth Honinbo game, scheduled for June 17 & 18, will be a crucial one for his title defense.

Kono To Challenge Iyama For Gosei Title: In the final of the 38th Gosei tournament, Kono Rin 9P (B) defeated Matsumoto Takehisa 7P by 1.5 points, so he will challenge Iyama Yuta Gosei for the title. Kono challenged Iyama for the Tengen title last November, but lost three straight; he will be hoping to improve on this record in what will be his first Gosei challenge. The title match starts on July 6.

New Professional Couple: On June 4, Suzuki Ayumi 6-dan and Rin Kanketsu 7-dan got married at a hotel in Karuizawa. Rin commented: “There’s a perfect balance of supply and demand in our marriage: I like composing life-and-death problems and my wife likes solving them.” As far as I know, this is the 16th marriage among Nihon Ki-in professionals.

Categories: Japan,John Power Report
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AGA Board Nominations Closing Soon

Thursday June 6, 2013

Less than 10 days remain before nominations close for the 2013 AGA board elections. Incumbents Peter Celmer and Chris Kirschner are running to retain their seats in the Eastern and Western regions respectively. Nominations, including self-nominations are being accepted through June 15 and should be sent to elections@usgo.org

Categories: U.S./North America
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New Huntsville Go Club Seeks Rocket Scientists

Thursday June 6, 2013

The new Rocket City Go Club in the Huntsville, AL area has been founded “in the hope that we could lure some of the many NASA rocket scientists in the area into trying one of the world’s most ancient and fun board games” reports Adam LeCroy.Non rocket scientists are also welcome of course!” The club’s inaugural meeting will be June 17th at noon, at the Sinsaegae restuarant, 2701 Patton Rd SW, Huntsville, AL.
Got go club news? Get the word out! Email reports to us at journal@usgo.org 

Categories: U.S./North America
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UK Taps Shodan Challenger Chris Bryant to Reverse Team Fortunes

Thursday June 6, 2013

A new captain has been appointed to head up the British team for the online Pandanet Go European Team Championship 2013 following the UK’s demotion to the C League, after they failed to win a single game last season (A League Finalists Set in European Team Championship 5/10 EJ).

Chris Bryant 1d (pictured), a 23-year-old software engineer from Bury, who plays at St Albans Go Club, has been charged with reversing the team’s fortunes and his personal go history speaks of a man with the resolve to achieve his goals. Bryant learned go in February 2011 and early on made a commitment to try and reach dan grade within a year, signing up for the British Go Association (BGA)’s Shodan Challenge, where ambitious players are supported in a formal attempt to reach a specified higher grade within one year.

The puzzle-loving Bryant attributes his go success to solving an estimated 10,000 tsumego problems in a year — including about 1,000 in the first week alone, bringing him to 13-kyu — and in fact has only played about 300 actual games.

Bryant not only took the Challenge and met it, but also displayed his organizational flair by running the Shodan Challenge in 2011 – 2012 for the BGA. At that time there was an individual mentoring system, but this was difficult logistically and as Bryant explains, “The way [it] works at the moment is that there is a forum/Google group where people can post up games to be reviewed”. The BGA has also held closed teaching events for stronger players to improve. Bryant has already identified and made contact with more than the maximum pool of twelve (minimum six) strong players from which four will be selected for each round .

Outgoing captain Andrew Simons 4d continues to play a part in strengthening British go talent by giving lectures most Thursdays at 8pm in the British Room on the KGS go server. Bryant said of the lectures,  “These have helped a lot of people; it’s the kind of thing that I’d love to see more of. I give lectures myself, though mostly on Second Life – we have a go playing location there called Kido Province

As for future ambitions, Bryant said, “I’d like to become British Champion one day – going to need lots more tsumego for that though ;). I’ve never had a dedicated teacher but there have been a few people who I’ve got advice from and I’m really appreciative of that. One of the things I like most about go is that strong people seem eager to teach others, and so the trend continues as those players themselves become stronger!”

This year’s Championship starts in September.

- Tony Collman

Categories: Europe,Go News
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Tan Xiao, Liu Xing, Shi Yue & Lian Xio Blaze Into Changqi Cup Semi-Finals

Wednesday June 5, 2013

gu li & liu xingPreliminaries for the 10th Changqi Cup finished May 31 after three days of fierce matches. When the smoke cleared, Tan Xiao 7P, Liu Xing 7P, Shi Yue 9P, and Lian Xio 4P stood above the rest, including last year’s defending champions Chen Yaoye 9P and Tuo Jiaxi 3P. The finalist’s circle was especially sweet for Liu as he competed in 2007, 2008, and 2011 to no avail. However, this year he bested his two-time conqueror Gu Li 9P. No date has been set for the semifinals, although the finals have been scheduled for late October 2013.

Known as one of China’s “most generously sponsored tournaments” with a grand prize of over $73,000 USD, the Changqi Cup always draws China’s top players. Pros who made an appearance this year were Chang Hao 9P, Fan Tingyu 9P, Kong Jie 9P, and Jiang Weijie 9P, to name a few. Joint-hosts the Chinese Go Association and the Ing Foundation (Shanghai Branch) originally came together in 2004 to honor Ing Chang-ki. For more information about this year’s tournament including photos and game records, please visit Go Game Guru.
- Annalia S. Linnan, based on reporting on Go Game Guru

AGF Restocks, Publishes DIY 9×9 Board

Wednesday June 5, 2013

What does $17,000 buy? If you’re The American Go Foundation, here’s the answer: 8,000 9×9 cardboard beginner boards for the Starter Set, 1,000 full size wooden boards for the Club Classic and 2,000 vinyl boards for distribution to AGF programs and AGA chapters. Thanks to generous donors, “We’ve provided hundreds of programs with materials in the last few years, and our successful outreach to schools and libraries means that demand is growing even faster,” AGF VP Paul Barchilon told the EJ. For the DIYers out there, the AGF has also made the PDF of the 9×9 board available as a download. “Why didn’t we think of this before?” muses AGF President Terry Benson. “Print boards and rules, make stones from card stock with a ¾” punch (available online or at any good craft store) and you’re ready to go.” The AGF is supported entirely by generous go players; to support their work, click here.

Categories: U.S./North America
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Third International Children’s Art Contest

Wednesday June 5, 2013

The popular International Children’s Go Art Contest is back for the third year in a row, and children are invited to submit their pieces.  Last year’s contest drew almost 70 entries, from ten different countries, and this year organizers hope to pull in even more.  The entries will be exhibited at the US Go Congress in Tacoma, in August.  The categories will be for under 12 and under 16, with three winners, and 2 notable entries in each category.  Magnetic go sets for the top six winners will be provided by Yellow Mountain Imports.  To see some highlights of last year’s entries, visit the online gallery on the Go Symposium site.  The contest also has a Facebook page here.  Complete entry information is available in the pdf file attached to this link (right click to download once it takes you to the page with the file) GoArtContest2013. -Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor

“The Surrounding Game” Heads to Japan

Tuesday June 4, 2013

Heading to Japan later this month, “The Surrounding Game” documentary crew is looking for help as they finish up principal photography on the film. The 3-man filming team will arrive in Tokyo on June 25 and shoot for about a week before heading to Osaka. “We are in communication with several people at the Nihon Kiin in Tokyo and the Kansai Kiin in Osaka,” reports Will Lockhart, “and we’re looking for people to stay with, interpreters, and other filming ideas that visually illustrate the rich cultural legacy of the game.” The Japan shoot “will be our last big filming operation, and I am confident it will lead to some of our very best material,” Lockhart adds. Click here for the complete update and use the comment section to post suggestions.

Garlock UK Walk Raises Nearly $2,000 for AGF

Tuesday June 4, 2013

“Lisa and I want to thank everyone who contributed so generously to the American Go Foundation through our recent Coast to Coast walk in England,” says American Go E-Journal Managing Editor Chris Garlock. “It turns out that many ‘Coasters’ do the walk as charity fundraisers and it gave us a great opportunity to talk about the terrific and effective work the AGF does promoting go in the U.S.” The Garlocks — who were celebrating their 30th wedding anniversary — have raised almost $2,000 so far to support the AGF’s outreach to thousands of American children in schools, libraries and community centers across the country. “Promoting go is a long journey, not unlike a trek across difficult terrain,” says AGF President Terry Benson. “Chris and Lisa have blazed an exciting new trail we hope others will follow.” Deadline for donations is this Sunday at midnight; click here to contribute and to see the list of contributors. “A very special thanks to Paul Barchilon — assisted by Roger Schrag and Andy Okun — for excellent work on the E-Journal while I was away,” Garlock added.

Categories: U.S./North America
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Your Move/Readers Write: Power’s Wrong Order?

Tuesday June 4, 2013

“Kudos for your ongoing, seemingly tireless work,” writes Sunnyvale Chapter founder and organizer Jean de Maiffe. “You’ve certainly learned and grown over the years.” However, de Maiffe says, “I have a small quibble for you. I think The Power Report (June 2 EJ) would have been more effective if it were in chronological order.  Putting the Honinbo information first makes rather weak the statement, ‘This win may have given him [Takao] some momentum for the Honinbo title match.’ I think that statement would have been more powerful if it were foreshadowing Takao’s later success in the Honinbo.”