American Go E-Journal

4th Trans-Atlantic Youth Match This Sunday

Wednesday May 30, 2012

The strongest north American kids will face off against their counterparts in Europe, this Sunday, June 3, on KGS.  Canada and the US will play as a team, top players Calvin Sun, 7d, from the US and Bill Lin, 7d,  from Canada will lead the fight taking on Pavel Lisy 5d and Lukas Podpera 5d.  Each side will field ten players.  Europe won last year, but North America won the two years prior.  Spectators are welcome and can watch the action in the TransAtlantic Youth Go Tournament room.  Due to the wide time ranges, the matches will take place at two different times.  Group 1 will be at 11 am EDT, and group 2 at 2 pm EDT.  The schedule and the players are all listed on the webpage for the event. -Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor

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Portland Prevails in 4-City School Tourney

Wednesday May 30, 2012

Youngsters in Portland, OR, defeated their rivals in Mexico City in a four-city school tourney held on KGS May 20th.  Ann Arbor and Detroit MI also competed, with Academy of the Americas, in Detroit, notching up a win in the first round, but losing in the second.  Students from Portland were eager for paybacks, as Mexico’s Pipiolo Academy had defeated all comers in their first inter-city match this past February (see Mexico Schools Portland).  All four schools have been competing with each other on KGS, and meeting each other on Skype as part of an international collaboration co-sponsored by the AGF.  -Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor.  Photo: Mexico Team, top, by Siddhartha Avila, Portland Teams, bottom, by Peter Freedman.

Congress Registrations Top 300; Cost Goes Up June 15

Tuesday May 29, 2012

Over 300 have now signed up for this year’s U.S. Go Congress, set for August 4-12 in Black Mountain, NC. Professionals confirmed thus far include Maeda Ryo, Jennie Shen, Cathy Li, Yilun Yang, Feng Yun, Mingjiu Jiang and – just confirmed today — Liang Weitang 9P and Luo Jianyuan 5P from China. “Register and make your payment now to reserve your preferred accommodation,” urges Co-Director Paul Celmer, noting that registration costs rise $50 on June 15th. “Remember, your registration is not complete until you have made payment.” Other Congress features: the first ever U.S. pro certification tournament and the first International Go Symposium in North America.

Categories: U.S. Go Congress
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Contested Election in AGA Board At-Large Race while Western Seat Empty

Tuesday May 29, 2012

While a contested election is shaping up for the American Go Association’s At-Large seat, with Jie Li and Chuck Robbins both nominated, there’s thus far no candidate for the open seat in the Western region. Lisa Scott and Gurujeet Khalsa have been nominated in the Central and Eastern regions respectively. Nominations, including self-nominations, are being accepted now through June 15 and should be sent to elections@usgo.org, reports Arnold Eudell. Details on qualifications and procedures are available here.

Categories: U.S./North America
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Myung-wan Kim 9P to Commentate on Tygem Online Pro Prelim

Monday May 28, 2012

Myungwan Kim 9P (right) will be doing live game commentary on top games at the TygemGo Online Pro Prelim, which begins June 2 on the Tygem go server. Games will be played at 12:30p (EST) throughout the month of June. “Remember, everyone can play in this online prelim,” said President Allan Abramson. “Plus, you’ll get a button commemorating your participation!”  Click here to register. Live commentary on Tygem includes audio and video feed and is one of the features of the Korea-based go server. “They started the company with live commentaries and it still is a very popular feature with Korean go players,” Kim tells the E-Journal. The schedule: Lower round: 2 rounds of single elimination on June 2nd and 3rd; Middle round: 3 rounds of double elimination on June 9th,10th and 16th; Upper round: 3 round of double elimination on June 17th, 23th and 24th. Final head to head: June 30th. photo: Myung-wan Kim commenting a game at the recent Cotsen Open; photo by Chris Garlock

 

2012 Maryland Open at a Glance: Report/Game Index

Monday May 28, 2012

The 39th Maryland Open and AGA-Tygem Go Pro Prelim was played May 26-27 in Catonsville, Maryland, just outside Baltimore, organized by the Baltimore Go Club, and sponsored by the American Go Association, Tygem, Yellow Mountain Imports and the Baltimore County Department of Recreation and Parks.

Organized by Keith Arnold, Sam Zimmerman was TD. Top-board games broadcast on KGS by the American Go E-Journal; Chris Garlock, Todd Heidenreich and John Pinkerton, game recorders. Photos: Maryland Open winner Andy Liu (left); 2nd-place winner ZhaoNian Chen (right); organizer Keith Arnold (in cap, middle right); young player (bottom right); photos by John Pinkerton 

Reports:
Andy Liu Sweeps Maryland Open, Qualifies for Tygem Pro Tourney
Maryland Open Kicks Off Saturday
Maryland Open Field “Shaping Up Nicely”
Maryland Open Next Stop in TYGEMGO Pro Prelim Series

Game Records (winner in bold; left-click to download and view in an sgf viewer; no crosstab currently available)
Round 1 (5/26)
Board 1: Lin Lu-Jie Li
Board 2: Andy Liu-I-Han Lui
Board 3: Yuan Zhou-Eric Lui

Round 2 (5/26)
Board 1: ZhaoNian Chen-Jie Li
Board 2: Kevin Huang-Andy Liu
Board 3: Lin Lu-Eric Lui

Round 3 (5/26)
Board 1: Andy Liu-ZhaoNian Chen
Board 2: Eric Lui-Jie Li

Round 4 (5/27)
Board 1: Rui Xie-Andy Liu
Board 2: Jie Li-Kevin Huang
Board 3: Eric Lui-ZhaoNian Chen

Round 5 (5/27)
Board 1: Jie Li-Andy Liu
Board 2: ZhaoNian Chen-Rui Xie

Atlanta School Using Go to Develop Critical Thinking

Monday May 28, 2012

An Atlanta school is hoping that go will help its low-income students develop their critical thinking skills. At the Dekalb PATH Academy, in Atlanta GA, “our students are 76% Hispanic, 20% African-American and 87% are classified as low-income by federal government standards,” reports Assistant Principal Graham Balch, who launched the project. Balch says that at Dekalb “we have helped our children overcome the disadvantage of poverty,” noting that the school outperforms every other non-selective middle school in the local school system. “However, while we have done a good job of teaching them content, in my opinion, they still are behind on developing their analytical critical thinking.” Balch is hoping to change that by working with a group of teachers to teach the game of go. “Our students learned and played go for 70 minutes a day in class for three weeks,” he reports. “Our kids have loved playing go. They come in the morning and get out boards right away, we teach them how to play and technique in class, and they play, and play, in tutorial after school. It has been incredible hearing them tell us at first that ‘It’s easy’ and then a couple days later that ‘Man, this game is really getting hard.’” Balch, who says that “We look forward to seeing the impact go has on students’ critical thinking and global perspective,” adds that “I am so grateful for the American Go Foundation and None Redmond for making this possible,” and is hopeful that go may spread in Georgia schools next year. The project wrapped up the school year with a single-elimination tournament that drew 80 students. “Malcolm Ramey 30k, the boy in the middle of the picture, with a light blue shirt on, won the tournament,” said a proud Balch.
- Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor. Photo by Graham Balch.

Andy Liu Sweeps Maryland Open, Qualifies for Tygem Pro Tourney

Sunday May 27, 2012

Andy Liu 7D convincingly defeated Jie Li 7D in the last round to complete his sweep of the 39th Maryland Open and AGA Tygem Pro Prelim, winning all five games at the May 26-27 event in Baltimore, MD.  ZhaoNian Chen 7D was second and Yixian Zhou 6D was third. Liu’s win qualifies him to compete in the AGA Tygem Pro tournament this August in Black Mountain, NC. Other qualifiers thus far include Edward Kim (Seattle) and Calvin Sun and Curtis Tang (Cotsen). Two more will qualify in the AGA TygemGo Online Pro Qualifier, which starts in early June.

Round 5 top results: Andy Liu d. Jie Li; ZhaoNian Chen d. Rui Xie; Kevin Huang d. Eric Lui; Yixian Zhou d. Yuan Zhou; Lin Lu d. Daniel Chou; Phil Waldron d. Jimmy Yang; I-Han Lui d.  Rongrong Zhang; Kevin Wang d. Justin Teng; Andrew Jackson d. Zhenying Gu.

Round 4 top results: Andy Liu d. Rui Xie; Jie Li d. Kevin Huang; ZhaoNian Chen d. Eric Lui; Yuan Zhou d. Lin Lu; Yixian Zhou d. Phil Waldron; Daniel Chou d. I-Han Lui; Jimmy Yang d. Andrew Jackson; Rongrong Zhang d. Justin Teng; Zhenying Gu d. Kevin Wang.

Round 3 top results: Andy Liu d. ZhaoNian Chen; Jie Li d. Eric Lui; Kevin Huang d. Yuan Zhou; Rui Xie d. Yixian Zhou d. Daniel Chou; Phil Waldron d. Edward Zhang; Jimmy Yang d. Kevin Wang.

Round 2 top results: ZhaoNian Chen d. Jie Li; Andy Liu d. Kevin Huang; Eric Lui d. Lin Lu; Rui Xie d. I-Han Lui; Yuan Zhou d. Daniel Chou; Dae Yol Kim d. Edward Zhang; Yixian Zhou d. Kevin Wang; Phil Wadron d. Zhenying Gu.

Round 1 top results: Jie Li d. Lin Lu; Andy Liu d. I-Han Lui; Eric Lui d. Yuan Zhou; ZhaoNian Chen d. Dae Yol Kim; Rui Xie d. Jie Liang; Kevin Huang d. Yixian Zhou; Daniel Chao d. Philip Waldron.

The tournament was played in Catonsville, Maryland, just outside Baltimore, and was organized by the Baltimore Go Club, and sponsored by the American Go Association, Tygem, Yellow Mountain Imports and the Baltimore County Department of Recreation and Parks.
photos: top left: Andy Liu (r) plays Rui Xie in Round 4; middle right: Andy Liu (r) plays ZhaoNian Chen on Board 1 in Round 3; bottom left: Zhaonian Chen (r) plays Jie Li on Board 1; photos by Chris Garlock 

Your Move/Readers Write: The Girl Who Played Go

Sunday May 27, 2012

“I saw this book today and thought the go community would be interested,” writes E-Journal reader Tina Zhang about Shan Sa’s 2003 novel The Girl Who Played Go. That sent us deep into the American Go EJournal Archive where we retrieved Roy Laird’s 7/15/2003 review:

GO REVIEW: The Girl Who Played Go
by Shan Sa; translated from the French by Adriana Hunter
280 pp.

In The Square of The Thousand Winds, a Chinese girl plays go. Serious go, toppling opponent after opponent. The time is the early 1930‘s and the Japanese are invading. Hearing that “terrorists” from the Chinese Resistance meet at the Square to plot their next moves, a Japanese soldier visits the square in disguise, to spy on them. Instead he falls into a game with the girl who plays go. They meet at the square day after day to continue this strangely compelling game. Meanwhile, we watch their lives converge toward a startling climax.

The award-winning author (at left) seems to know her Asian history and literature, and even fills us in with footnotes when the characters participate in major historical events, or discuss history. Attention to detail is so “granular” that the Chinese girl depicted on the cover is even holding authentic Chinese stones! (Chinese stones are flat on one side.) The writing is sprinkled with thoughtful little gems, but seems mostly halting and disjointed, and the occasional intrusion in the translation of Britishisms like “chivvying” is a bit jarring. Most of the chapters are only a few paragraphs long — just when we‘re beginning to immerse ourselves in a scene, it‘s over. Nonetheless, as often happens with good books, I am left with vivid memories and images, and thoughtful questions about the meaning of war. You have to admire the author‘s ambition. Through these gradually intertwining lives, one Chinese, one Japanese, she seeks to illuminate a dark era of occupation, torture and violent death, and to some degree she succeeds.

As a go player, I was happy to see the game presented as in a compelling, dramatic way. The Japanese lieutenant goes to the Square on a mission for his country and the Emperor, but finds himself hopelessly seduced by go. He confesses to his Captain, who shows his understanding by quoting the Chinese philosopher Zhuang Zi: “When you lose a horse, you never know whether it is a good thing or a bad thing.” In the end, the game becomes the means by which two minds meet in a profound, life-altering way.

This novel takes its place in a growing lexicon of “go stories”. The ongoing, periodically adjourned game that progresses through most of the book invites comparison with Kawabata‘s The Master of Go, which won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1968. After the degrading portrayal of women in Sung-hwa Hong‘s tough, dark First Kyu, it‘s nice to see a woman who is not just the central character, but clearly the master of a her fate — and a strong go player to boot!

Most of all, The Girl Who Played Go brings to mind the classic film The Go Masters, a historic Chinese-Japanese film that has been called “an Asian ‘Gone With the Wind.’ ”
- review by Roy Laird

Maryland Open Kicks Off Saturday

Friday May 25, 2012

Registration runs from 9-10:30a at the 39th annual Maryland Open Saturday morning, with the first round scheduled for 11a. “Pre-registered or not, all are welcome!” says organizer Keith Arnold. The tournament in Catonsville, MD (just outside Baltimore), is also an AGA-Tygem Pro Prelim event for the AGA-Tygem Pro Final in North Carolina, which will be from July 28th to August 4th. The only other prelim is the AGA-Tygem Pro Online Prelim, also open to all, but sign up by Sunday, May 27. Top contenders this year include Yuan Zhou (who recently competed in the World Amateur Go Championships in China), Eric Lui, and Lin Lu; sources tell the EJ that Andy Liu and Michael Chen will be competing as well, so look for some exciting games on the top boards. The 2-day, 5-round tournament offers prizes at all levels, and top boards will be broadcast live on KGS by the E-Journal, starting around 11a (EST) Saturday.