American Go E-Journal

WAGC Game Report: Round 2

Sunday May 13, 2012

Despite a good opening, the United States’ Yuan Zhou 7d became the second seeded player to suffer defeat when he lost to 13-year-old Chen Cheng-Hsun 7d (at left) of Taipei  in just 152 moves. “I wasn’t prepared to play such a tough player on the first day,” Zhou confided to the E-Journal. “But it’s great to see such strong young players.” When Cheng-Hsun competed in the WAGC in Hangzhou in 2010 he was thinking of going directly from primary school into a professional career. Instead, he took the more normal course of entering middle school, but his playing strength has continued to improve and he would already be serious competition for a lot of professionals.

The game between Nadeem Prem 3d (Brazil) and Leslie Perez 4k (Chile, at right) developed into a contest worth watching, despite the wide disparity in listed rankings. Overcoming the six-stone ranking difference, Perez won handily by 17.5 points to score the tournament’s first win by a woman; her Chinese counterpart, Fang Xiaoyan, the tournament’s only other female player, had already lost her second-round game to Andreas Gotzfried of Luxembourg.

In the Japan-Netherlands game, an early mistake by Mr Nakazono gave Alexander Eerbeek the lead, and he did not seem about to give it back. As the game progressed Mr Nakazono’s expression became increasingly grim, but in the end he managed to kill a large group and Alexander resigned. Japan had had a close call, but had earned the right to face Korea in the next round.

In the Czechia-Germany game, Czechia (Lukas Podepera) launched a fierce attack on a large German group, forcing it to struggle for a minimal life with just two eyes, and kept the pressure up relentlessly until Germany (Benjamin Teuber) resigned. Ten minutes later, Slovenia (Matoh Leon 5d) prevailed over Argentina (Eduardo Lopez Herrero 5d). The winners of these two games will meet in Round 3.

The last game to end, at 4:55, was the one between the North Korean and Hungarian players, Ri Kwang-Hyok (at left) and Pal Balogh. ‘My opponent made a mistake in the opening and I got the lead,’ said Balogh, ‘but I quickly matched him with a mistake of my own. After that I think I was still ahead, but I gave him a chance to attack and he took it.’ Balogh persevered to the end but lost by 9.5 points. Ri Kwang-Hyok, a veteran of the 2010 Asian games, is another player who would be serious competition for many professionals. Although Balogh looked shaken, his final comment was, ‘I feel happy with the way I played.’
- adapted from James Davies’ report on Ranka Online; click here for latest results; Click here for online game records for the following Round 1 games: Finland-UK; Hungary-DPRKorea (Commentary by So Yokoku 8P; Taipei-US (Commentary by So Yokoku 8P); photos by John Pinkerton

 

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2012 WAGC Round 2 Game Records

Sunday May 13, 2012

Finland-UK (Commentary by Kaz Furuyama); Hungary-DPRKorea (Commentary by So Yokoku 8P); Taipei-US (Commentary by So Yokoku 8P); Japan-Netherlands (uncommented)

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WAGC Game Report: Round 1

Sunday May 13, 2012

The World Amateur Go Championship games are played with basic time of one hour per player, followed by thirty-seconds-per move overtime, each player having three thirty-second periods to use. In Round 1 on Sunday morning, among the four seeded players, Qiao Zhijian (China), Lee Hyunjoon (Korea), and Yuan Zhou (U.S.A.) won handily, but Remi Campagnie (France) was upended by Pavol Lisy (Slovakia). This was a come-from-behind victory. ‘I was losing,’ Pavol said, ‘but my opponent made a big mistake, and after that I was winning.’ It was not an upset, however: both players are ranked 5-dan. In the other battles of the 5-dans, Leon Matoh (Slovenia) defeated Igor Popov (Russia), Lukas Podpera (Czechia) won a close 2.5-point victory over Longyang Li (New Zealand), and Eduardo Lopez (Argentina) prevailed over Martin Li (Sweden) by 8.5 points. The two youngest contestants both won their games, Chen Cheng-Hsun (Chinese Taipei) beating Carlos Acuna (Colombia) and Chan Chihin (Hong Kong) beating Felicien Mazille (Switzerland). Nakazono Seizo (Japan) won by a comfortable margin against Saechen Panjawat (Thailand), and in a very short game, Ri Kwang Hyok (DPR Korea) defeated Fang Xiaoyan (the second Chinese player). Chan Kouk Wang (Macau) won by forfeit when Ismail Ja (Morocco) failed to show up. Last to end was the game between Pal Balogh (Hungary, 6d) and Andreas Gotzfried (Luxembourg, 4d). ‘I thought it was about even through the middle game, but I lost a lot of points in the endgame,’ Andreas said. He had turned in a creditable performance, against one of the strongest players in Europe.
- excerpted from James Davies’ report on Ranka Online. Click here for latest results. Click here for online game records for the following Round 1 games: DPR Korea-China (Commentary by So Yokoku 8P, shown at left in photo at top right, with translator Ting Ting Chen and American Go E-Journal Managing Editor Chris Garlock); Thailand-Japan (Commentary by Yang Shuang 3P); US-Norway; Brazil-Korea.  Bottom left photo: Cornel Burzo (Romania) reviews his Round 1 game with Zaid Waqi (Malaysia). photos by John Pinkerton

 

2012 WAGC Round 1 Game Records

Sunday May 13, 2012

DPR Korea-China (Commentary by So Yokoku 8P); Thailand-Japan (Commentary by Yang Shuang 3P); US-Norway (uncommented); Brazil-Korea (uncommented).

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33rd WAGC Begins: E-Journal & Ranka Online Team Up for Coverage

Saturday May 12, 2012

The 33rd edition of the World Amateur Go Championships (WAGC) began Sunday morning, May 13, in the gold-draped main playing hall of the Guangzhou Chess Institute (“chess” in this context refers to go, chess and Chinese Chess) in Guangzhou, also known as Canton, the capital city of Guangdong Province in South China. Fifty-six players (Poland’s player missed his plane and has been replaced with a second Chinese player) have traveled from around the world to compete for the title as world’s top amateur. While China and Korea are once again favorites to win, the U.S. last year cracked the top five with Eric Lui’s 3rd-place finish and is represented this year by Yuan Zhou 7d, the popular teacher and author who’s won a number of U.S. titles. The American Go E-Journal and Ranka Online have teamed up again this year to provide full coverage of the WAGC, including tournament reports, game records and commentaries and photos; reports will be posted regularly on the AGA’s website, at Ranka Online and in the daily E-Journal. The 8-round tournament runs May 13-16.
- Chris Garlock; photos by John Pinkerton
Click here to download these Round 1 sgf game records:
DPR Korea (Ri Kwang Hyok 6D) vs China (Fang Xiaoyan 3D)
- Commentary by So Yokoku 8P
US (Yuan Zhou 7D) vs Norway (Pal Harald Sannes 5D) 

WAGC Orientation & Pairings

Saturday May 12, 2012

By 2:35 p.m. on Saturday, May 12, most of the contestants in the 33rd World Amateur Go Championship had made a good start on recovering from jetlag, had sampled the breakfast and lunch buffets at Guangzhou’s Baiyun Hotel, and were ready for the orientation meeting. The meeting opened with an address by chief referee Hua Yigang 8P, who described go as a sport, an art, and a good platform for communication, and noted that east or west, Canton cuisine is the best. Executive chief referee Liu Jing 8P then went over the tournament rules and the computerized pairing system, which were the same as used in Hangzhou in 2010, and announced that since only 55 contestants were coming, an extra Chinese player had been added to make an even number. Next came the main business, which was to draw the numbers that the computer would use in determining the pairings throughout the tournament…click here for Ranka Online’s complete report.
- James Davies; photo: Carlos Andres Acuna Silva (right) drawing for player numbers; photo by Ivan Vigano

Maryland Open Next Stop in TYGEMGO Pro Prelim Series

Saturday May 12, 2012

Next up in the TYGEMGO Pro Prelim series is the Baltimore Go Club’s 39th Maryland Open on May 26-27 in Catonsville Maryland just outside Baltimore. The top finishing player with qualifying citizenship earns the right to compete for pro certification this summer in North Carolina the week before the US Go Congress. Top players also earn points to represent the US in the World MindSport Games in France. “However,” stresses local organizer Keith Arnold, “ALL players of ALL strengths are welcome to play and be present for this historic event.” Click here to pre-register or contact Keith Arnold at hlime81@comcast.net with any questions.

2010′s Top 20 Professional Go Players

Saturday May 12, 2012

For those of you who like to follow the professional go scene, An Younggil 8P (r) recently finished writing a year-long series of articles for GoGameGuru profiling the top 20 professional go players of 2010. Throughout the series, Younggil goes well beyond the usual historical details to write about players’ personalities and go styles, as well as recounting his own meetings with many of them. Younggil’s intention was to introduce his professional colleagues to a Western audience as humans, rather than just pro go players. He also shares many insights into the life of a professional go player and the go scene in Korea. It makes fascinating reading for any serious go fan.
The full list of bios includes: Lee SedolKong JiePark JunghwanChoi CheolhanKang DongyunHeo YounghoGu LiXie HeWon SeongjinLi ZheZhou RuiyangTuo JiaxiLee ChanghoQiu JunKim JiseokWang XiCho HanseungChen YaoyePark Younghun and Lee Younggu.

photo: Kong Jie (left) and Lee Sedol play in the final of the 23rd Fujitsu Cup (2010). 

2012 WAGC Readies for Launch in Guangzhou

Friday May 11, 2012

To a casual passerby it was just a couple of guys playing go on a Friday night. But this was the Friday night before the 2012 World Amateur Go Championship (WAGC) in Guangzhou, China, and the go players were Hideo Otake 9P (right), Chairman of the Nihon Kiin Board of Directors and IGF President Zhenming Chang (left), Vice Chairman and President of the CITIC Group, a major Chinese firm dealing in finance, real estate, resource development, manufacturing and telecommunications. The two sat down for a quiet game in the lounge on the 30th floor of the Baiyung Hotel, where players from around the world continued to arrive and check in for the 33rd annual event, which begins Sunday and features players from 64 countries in an 8-round championship to determine the top amateur player. Click here for the list of players and here — Warming Up for Guangzhou — for Ranka Online’s report on how some of the WAGC contestants have been taking advantage of the extensive slate of European tournaments to get into shape for this tournament.
- Chris Garlock; photo by John Pinkerton

Lee Sedol Wins GS Caltex Cup; Chen Yaoye Holds Tianyuan; BC Card Cup Finals Begin

Thursday May 10, 2012

May isn’t just a big month for US go players. The temperature is rising on the international go scene too. On May 4, Chen Yaoye 9P defended his Chinese Tianyuan (Tengen) title against up-and-coming player, Zhou Hexi 4P. Zhou faced off a strong field to top the 26th Tianyuan qualifiers for the second year in a row, but once again fell to Chen, who has now held the Tianyuan for four consecutive years. Meanwhile in Korea, Lee Sedol 9P fought back from a 2-1 disadvantage to defeat Park Younghun 9P in the (best of five) 17th GS Caltex Cup. Lee took home a cool $60,000 for his trouble. The finals of the 4th BC Card Cup start tomorrow (May 11 in the US), with Korea’s Baek Hongseok 9P set to take on China’s Dang Yifei 4P. China dominated the earlier rounds of the tournament, but Baek managed to fight his way through to the final, defeating Zhou Ruiyang 5P and Hu Yaoyu 8P along the way. 17 year old Dang Yifei’s run has been no less impressive. En route to the final, Dang defeated Lee Sedol 9P, Park Younghun 9P and Piao Wenyao 9P, among others. Both players are competing for their first international title.

Coming up very soon:

  • The 33rd World Amateur Go Championship is just getting started in Guangzhou, China. Expect updates from the E-Journal team very soon.
  • The 4th BC Card Cup finals start tomorrow. Watch them live on Baduk TV. The coverage for game 1 starts at 11:30pm, May 11, US EDT.
  • The 67th Japanese Honinbo title match starts on May 15 in Kyoto, Japan.
  • This being an Olympic year – the (quadrennial) Ing Cup will begin on May 23 in Taiwan.
    For more details, see the professional Go calendar at Go Game Guru.

- David Ormerod, GoGameGuru; Photo: 17 year old Dang Yifei 4P (right) plays Piao Wenyao 9P.