American Go E-Journal

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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Go Documentarians Looking for Translators

Thursday November 15, 2012

Just back from extensive filming in Asia, The Surrounding Game  documentary team is now in post-production. “We’ve hired an assistant editor to prep us for the editing and organizational process,” reports co-director Cole Pruitt. “We’re now in the process of transcoding, logging, and labeling all of our footage, which totals over 200 hours and includes several languages, countries, and of course, dozens and dozens of go players!” The filmmakers expect to begin fulfilling promised rewards to Kickstarter backers “as the materials trickle in,” Pruitt adds, while they continue to do “small bits of filming here and there” to assemble the last pieces. “We’re extremely grateful for the continued support of the American and international go communities and are looking forward to the next several months of making the film,” Pruitt says. With some 30 hours of interviews in Chinese or Korean, the filmmakers are looking for translation help. “These exclusive interviews include Chang Hao 9P, Lee Sedol 9P, the editor-in-chief of the World of Weiqi magazine, and several more high-profile figures,” says Pruitt, “so this a chance to see them before anyone else!” Translators need to be fluent readers/speakers in English and Chinese or Korean. Anyone interested should email surroundinggame@gmail.com.
photo: Co-director Will Lockhart (l), photographer Colin Sonner (middle) and Field Producer/Translator Cherry Shen (r) interview an 11-year-old Chinese 5 dan and her father in Shanghai at the Holiday Go Club; photo by Nik Gonzales

Categories: U.S./North America
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Go Spotting: Internment Camp Board at San Diego Museum

Thursday November 15, 2012

“I recently went to the Old Globe Theatre in San Diego to see Allegiance, a musical about the Japanese internment camps in the US,” writes San Diego Go Club President Ted Terpstra. “Powerful stuff. They had an accompanying exhibit of artifacts of the camps in the Museum of Man next door. There was even a go board and stones that had been smuggled into the camp because ‘Japanese’ cultural things were prohibited. Note that the board has been used so much that the lines have been worn off.”
photos by Ted Terpstra

Categories: Go Photos,Go Spotting
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New Documentary Tracks Chess, Challenge and Championships at a Brooklyn Middle School

Thursday November 15, 2012

by Dr. Roy Laird
At Intermediate School 318 in Brooklyn, three out of every four students qualify for free lunch, but when it comes to spirit, support and  pure brain power, some of them have plenty of resources. In fact, as we learn in Brooklyn Castle, the award-winning new documentary from Kelly Dellamaggiore, IS 318 is home to some of the strongest young chess players in the country; the school’s teams have brought home nearly 30 national championships. As a longtime proponent of go in the schools, I found the film to be an inspiring reminder of what mind sports can do for kids. Brooklyn Castle follows five members of the 2009-2010 team, each with their own goal.   Rochelle Ballantyne wants to be the first African-American female Master level (ELO 2000) player (11/18 update: she made it, with a new rating of 2057 following the recent World Youth Chess Championship in Maribor, Slovenia). Patrick Johnston, on the other hand, just wants a positive result so he can raise his ranking out of the 400s. (Spoiler alert: chess seems to help him with some attention issues he had in earlier grades; he emerges from middle school as an honor student.) As the students pursue their dreams, we are reminded that behind every dream is a team. With support from the school’s budget, fundraising efforts and help from foundations such as Chess-In-The-Schools, school staff go far beyond the call of duty, for instance taking 57 players of all levels to the National Championship in Dallas. That’s 57 potentially life-altering experiences right there. Chess-loving children apply from far and wide because they know that all sixth grade students are required to take at least one period of chess per week; in seventh and eighth grade it becomes an elective, but students can schedule up to seven periods of chess per week. We also meet the players’ families and see the crucial role their support plays. The team’s toughest opponent turns out to be a succession of budget cuts that threatens to take them out of a national competition they know they can win.  Hurry if you want to see it in theaters, although the low-tech sound and video quality may be better suited for a smaller screen. You can also read about the school at length in How Children Succeed by Paul Tough.

Brooklyn Castle – in theaters now — vividly highlights the benefits of school-based mind sports programs. (Post-film progress report: As reported in The New York Times earlier this year, five players from IS 318 achieved the equivalent of a college baseball team winning the World Series, becoming the first middle school team to win the National High School Championship!)  Go is also a wonderful arena for this kind of growth and development, in some ways even better than chess. If you’re thinking of starting a go program in your community, The American Go Foundation can help you with free equipment, matching funds, mentoring and much more – you’ll be surprised how easy it can be, and how rewarding for teacher and student alike.
- Laird, a former President of the American Go Association, currently serves on the Board of the American Go Foundation and manages school-based mental health clinics for The Children’s Aid Society in New York City.

 

Categories: U.S./North America
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28 Great Go Talks Now Online

Wednesday November 14, 2012

What does it take to become a Chinese pro? How did Hotta Yumi get the idea to write Hikaru No Go? What is new in the history of go and its rules? Who was Atari founder Nolan Bushnell’s most famous minimum-wage employee? For answers to these and many other intriguing questions about the game of go, visit the 2012 International Go Symposium’s new website, where all the presentations are archived, along with links to associated papers and web pages, as well as a YouTube channel of video recordings of the event.

Sponsored by The International Go Federation with additional support from The American Go Foundation, the conference was presented by organizers from the The American Go Association and the 2012 US Go Congress. This was the first such gathering since 2008, and 25 speakers eagerly seized the chance to present their latest findings to more than 100 registered participants. The Symposium offered something for just about everyone – programming enthusiasts, history buffs, anthropologists, teachers, organizers, and of course players. Papers and links associated with these presentations are available here. In the coming weeks we will profile some of the more remarkable videos, but don’t let that stop you from checking it out in the meantime.

 

Bryan Denley Wins Western Mass. Fall Tourney

Monday November 12, 2012

Players from as far as New Jersey and New York turned out for “a great day of go competition” at the Western Massachusetts Go Club Fall Tournament on Sunday, November 11th. “Bryan Denley scooted to first place, winning all four of his games,” reports TD William Luff. Willis Huang, Eric Osman, and An Tran tied for second. All the winners won one month’s membership to BadukTV.com and should e-mail Trevor Morris at gotrevor@gmail.com to claim their prize. photo (l-r): Ian Tran 10K, Eric Osman 2D, Bryan Denley 10K, William Luff 2D (TD) and Willis Huang 3D

Categories: U.S./North America
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AGF Sponsors Pro Teaching Program

Monday November 12, 2012

Thanks to a generous donor, the American Go Foundation is able to grant a select number of young players the opportunity to have a series of  professional lessons online.  Yi Lun Yang 7P, Janice Kim 3P, and  Jennie Shen 2P, have generously agreed to support the program.  Applicants must be AGA members, currently in grades K-12, and have never had a professional lesson before.  Applicants will be judged on their demonstrated interest in go, their short essays and any letters of recommendation.   Finalists may be asked to play a game against a strong amateur to confirm their enthusiasm.   Six lessons will be provided to each player selected.  The deadline for applications is January 1 2013. Apply to get stronger today, click here to download the form.   -Report by Keith Arnold, Photo by Paul Barchilon: Yilun Yang teaching kids at the 2010 Go Congress.

Young Lions Youth Tourney Nov. 17

Sunday November 11, 2012

“Sign up now to play in one of the premier youth tournaments in the US,” urges AGHS Vice President Hugh Zhang.  “Past winners of the Young Lions Tournament have gone on to do extremely well in the United States Youth Go Championship. 2010 winner Vincent Zhuang went on the win the USYGC, while Yunxuan Li, the 2011 winner nearly made the finals. This year, there will be an open division with Aaron Ye 5d poised to make his move. Get ready to rumble, because it will be an awesome showdown to see who will lead the pack of young go lions,” says Zhang.  For more info, and to register, visit the AGHS website. -Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor