American Go E-Journal

Dinerchtein Reports on the Russian Pair Go Championships

Monday March 7, 2011

The just-concluded 2011 Russian Pair Go Championships featured the strongest field ever, reports Alexandr Dinerchtein 3P, who also participated. “For the first time in history Svetlana Shikshina 3P (front left), took part, paired with her brother Ilya Shikshin 7D (back left) and it was quite obvious from the start that it would be too hard for other pairs to fight with the Shikshins team” and the siblings indeed swept the tournament 5-0. Dmitriy Surin 6d and Natalya Kovaleva 5d, the strongest Russian and European pair for many years straight, shared second place with Artem Dugin 5d and Aigul Nureeva 3d, from Kazan, both pairs scoring 4-1. “I like Pair Go very much,” Dinerchtein (back right) tells the E-Journal. He started playing at the Pair Go tournament in the European Go Congress in “1999 or 2000. At that time my partner was Julia Solomatina 1d from Moscow. We did quite well and even beat Saijo Masataka sensei and his 1k partner in even game.” He and Elvina Kalsberg 4d took second place in last year’s European Pair Go Championship and in this year’s Russian Pair Go Championships he partnered with Daria Koshkina (front right), a 3k from Yaroslavl who’s one of his students in Korean style Insei League on

[link]

KGS. “In the third round we played against the Shikshin-Shikshina team (see game record). To everyone’s surprise we were leading at some point in the middlegame, proving that Pair Go is enormously different from the normal game. I noticed that even the two siblings had very different plans and it was quite hard for them to understand and follow each other. Check Black moves 51-53, for example when Ilya invaded and Svetlana played on the other side of the board.” Dinerchtein says playing in the Pair Go tournament “was very exciting and I will surely take part in Pair Go tournaments again. Try it too, if you haven’t played Pair Go before. It’s fun!”

Categories: Europe
Share

WORLD GO NEWS ROUND-UP March 1-7: Lee Sedol Advances to Siptan Semifinals; Cho U Wins NEC Cup; Li He Wins Female Mingren; Cho U Takes Game 1 in Judan; Mukai Chiaki Wins First Round in Female Meijin

Monday March 7, 2011

Lee Sedol Advances to Siptan Semifinals: In the 6th Siptan quarterfinals on March 6, Lee Sedol 9P defeated Jen Youngkyu 5P by resignation. The Siptan is Korea’s equivalent to Japan’s Judan and is sponsored by the Wonik Group. Cho U Wins NEC Cup: Cho U 9P defeated Yamashita Keigo 9P by resignation in the 30th NEC Cup final on March 5. This is the third NEC Cup title for Cho. His first was in 2005 and the second in 2007. In addition to the NEC Cup, Cho currently holds three other titles, the Oza, Judan, and Kisei. Yamashita, only one title short of Cho, holds the Honinbo, Agon Cup, and Ryusei. Li He Wins Female Mingren: Li He 3P (r in photo) defeated Chen Yiming 1P (l) in the 2nd Female Mingren final, which was held March 2. This is the first Mingren title for Li as last year’s title winner was Zheng Yan 2P. Li currently holds the Female Xinren Wang title, which she will defend against Li Xiaoxi 1P sometime in March. Cho U Takes Game 1 in Judan: On March 3, defending Judan champion Cho U 9P defeated Iyama Yuta 9P by resignation in the first round of 49th Judan title match. Cho has held the title for the past two years and this is Iyama’s first Judan title match. The Judan is a best of five-game series and the second round will be played on March 24th. Mukai Chiaki Wins First Round in Female Meijin: In the first round of the 23rd Female Meijin title match, which was held March 2, Mukai Chiaki 4P defeated defending Female Meijin champion Xie Yimin 5P by resignation. Mukai and Xie faced each other in last year’s title match, with Xie winning the series 2-0. Xie has held the title for the last three years and is arguably the strongest female professional in Japan. The second round will be played on March 11th.
- JustPlayGo; edited by Jake Edge

Categories: World
Share

Lee & Ruder Win Austin Wildflower Classic

Sunday March 6, 2011

Simon Lee (r) and John Ruder won the 4th annual Wildflower Classic held March 5 in Austin, Texas. “The host store Great Hall Games was filled with 23 go players, some traveling 3-4 hours from surrounding cities Dallas, Houston, and San Antonio,” reports organizer Andy Olden.

More results: Simon Lee 2k  4-0; John Ruder 6k 4-0; Jonathan Gehrkin 1d 3-1; Mark Penner 1k 3-1;Tracey Su 5k 3-1; Damon Hoffman 17k 3-1
photo by Tracey Su. Click here for more photos

Categories: U.S./North America
Share

Felcan Goes for Broke in Middlebury Tourney

Sunday March 6, 2011

David Felcan 1d topped a field of “ten very enthusiastic players from Vermont, New Hampshire, and New York” with a 3-0record at the Go for Broke tournament held in Middlebury, VT on Saturday, March 5th, reports organizer Peter Schumer. Karen Ogg 1d finished second on SOS with a 2 – 1 record; others with 2-1 records were Lihu Ben-Ezri Ravin 4k, Jie Gu 5k, and Laura Wu 8k. Six participants won prizes.
photo: Rich Chalmers plays Karen Ogg; photo by Peter Schumer

Categories: U.S./North America
Share

Sung Yeo 4d Solves Chi Riddle

Sunday March 6, 2011

Sung Yeo 4d solved the “Riddle Wrapped in a Mystery” tournament held March 5 in Chicago, Ill, taking top honors. “I asked everyone to play in the spirit, and with the enthusiasm, of Yoshi Sawada (IN MEMORIAM: Yoshi Sawada 2/28). To remember that go is fun,” reports TD Bob Barber. “Although on crutches, and dulled by painkillers, Mark Rubenstein managed to win four of his five games,” Barber notes. “Adding a bit of color to the tournament, Peter Martin and Asha Nagaiya drove in from Louisville, KY to compete,” Barber added. “Finally, over pizza and local brew Half Acre, Kyle Blocher entertained us with the endgame theories of Elwyn Berlekamp.” Each player was given a copy of O Rissei’s book Catching Scent of Victory, furnished by the publisher Hinoki Press.
WINNER’S REPORT: 29 players; 1st Place Dan:  YEO, Sung 4d; 1st Place High Kyu:  ROHDE, David 5k; Tie 2nd Place High Kyu:  KOLB, Laura 2k;  RUBENSTEIN, Mark 4k; 1st Place Low Kyu:  BROWN, Duncan 12k.

Categories: U.S./North America
Share

YOUR MOVE: Keith Arnold Remembers Yoshi

Sunday March 6, 2011

I like to think I am careful in my judgments, and, therefore, rarely wrong – at least away from the go board. But one of my greatest misjudgments was Yoshi Sawada.

When I ran the US Go Congress in 2001, I was vigilant in keeping costs down and trying to pass those savings on to my guests. I was particularly frugal with comps – fighting the AGA to limit them, and even charging myself for room and board. And so when the powers that be insisted that Yoshi Sawada be comped, I balked. I mean, he was just a translator, and I had several Japanese speaking people on my team; I disagreed strongly with the expense.

Fortunately, this was a battle I lost. By the end of the Congress, I came to realize that Yoshi was so much more than a Japanese translator, he was a tireless worker who spent every waking hour (and I am not quite sure there were any sleeping hours) making sure my Congress was the best that he could make it.

What made him so special? Any of us who attended his lectures know. Note I said his lectures. To call them Nakayama’s, or Maeda’s or Takemiya’s is really unfair. It was the Yoshi Show, and I wish I could watch them in reruns forever.

Quite frankly, I am not sure how strong a go player he was. He was always reaching out to strong players in the room to make sure he was getting things right. I would even jokingly say I am not sure how strong his Japanese was – because clearly the length and breadth of what he said bore little resemblance to the amount of words that seemed to come out of the pro’s mouth – when Yoshi gave them a chance to speak.

No, I would say that Yoshi did not speak go, he did not speak Japanese. Yoshi spoke Pro.

He knew what a pro wanted to say, even if he did not say it. He knew how to take the most reserved pro, and bring him out of himself and make everything so entertaining and accessible – not just to the strong, not just to the weak, but to everyone, spouses and non-players included.

And he took care of them, made sure they were happy and entertained. If a pro had an issue with the way things were being done, we would never know if it were not for Yoshi. He knew, and he let us know. He lived his life like he played poker – he always made sure there was action.

The Congress gets harder every year for many of us, whose eyes glaze over new faces, looking for the old friends who will never return. In 2005, we lost the future in Greg Lefler. In 2009 we lost so much promise in Jin Chen and Landon Brownell. Last year we lost the personification of the soul of the Congress in Nakayama.

And now we have lost the laughter.

winter’s last cruel chill
shadows a most joyous light
august’s laughter dies

- Keith Arnold; this post originally appeared on Life in 19×19; photos by John Pinkerton

2011 N.A. Ing Masters Qualifiers Start on March 5-6

Sunday March 6, 2011

Two early qualifiers for the 2011 North America Ing Masters Qualifiers (NAIM) are being held in Boston, MA and Alhambra, CA this weekend, March 5-6. Click here for the southern California event and contact Ben Lerner at mitgoclub-tournament@mit.edu for the MIT tournament.

Every year, top players from Canada, Mexico and United States are invited to the NAIM, which is getting more competitive each year, as recent NAIM champions are either professional players, or have had to defeat a few pros to win.

“Except for professionals and seeded players, US players must accumulate points through a series of qualifier events throughout the US and/or two online qualifiers.” Says National Tournament Coordinator Zhiyuan ‘Edward’ Zhang.  “Clear (untied) winners of qualifiers though, are guaranteed a place in the NAIM main event in the 2011 US Congress at Santa Barbara, CA July 30 to August 7,” Adds Zhang. Click here for details. Contact tournaments@usgo.org if your chapter club wishes to hold a sanctioned NAIM qualifier.

Categories: U.S./North America
Share

Tiger Cubs Storm into Ricoh Cup Final

Sunday March 6, 2011

The march of the Chinese “tiger cubs” continues in China as Tan Xiao 4P and Li Zhe 6P stormed into the final of the 11th Ricoh Cup last week. Li Zhe 6P (l) defeated Wang Lei 6P in the semi-finals to reach the final, while Tan Xiao 4P (r) – a student of Nie Weiping 9P (playing Tan Xiao, at right) – defeated Hu Yaoyu 8P in the other semi-final. This is the first Ricoh Cup final where the tiger cubs have reached the final and yet another milestone for the group of rising young go professionals that the Chinese media has affectionately dubbed “the tiger cubs generation.” Earlier last month, Zhou Hexi 4P, another tiger cub, became the challenger for the 25th Tianyuan title. The Ricoh Cup final will be held in late April in China; the Ricoh Cup is a Chinese domestic tournament, not to be confused with Ricoh Pair Go, which is a Japanese tournament.
- Jing Ning; adapted from her original report on Go Game Guru, which includes game records of both semi-finals.

Categories: World
Share

Amberly Elementary Gets Go

Sunday March 6, 2011

Kids at Amberly Elementary School, in Portage MI,  learned about go this year. “Each year Amberly offers an opportunity for parents and members of the community to teach classes for an after school enrichment program,” writes Jason Preuss, whose daughter attends the school. “I decided it would be a great opportunity to introduce go.  The class met once a week for six weeks and had six students ranging from 1st to 5th grade.  It was enough time to cover the material in the first Level Up book.  The students enjoyed the class and the parents gave positive feedback. For my first time out I was pleased with how the class went. I would like to thank the AGF for their support, in particular the classroom start up kit.”
- EJ Youth Editor Paul Barchilon.  Photo by Jason Preuss
photo (l to r): Jason Preuss, Deidra Preuss, Alyson Koh, Jonathan Koh, Jonathan Ballard, Jacob Ballard. Not pictured: Zyad Wallace.

USYGC and World Youth Updates

Sunday March 6, 2011

The United States Youth Go Championships will be held March 26, with finals on the first weekend in April. The tournament will be held online, and will select the US representatives to the World Youth Goe Championships, in Bucharest, Romania.  The Ing Foundation has just announced that the Senior Division will be limited to under 16, not under 18, as has been the case in the past.  The USYGC will still allow youth under 18 to compete for the US titles, and will determine National Dan, Single Digit Kyu (SDK), and Double Digit Kyu (DDK) Champions. The winners will receive trophies, and prizes will be awarded in the following brackets: 5-7 dan 1-4 dan, 1-4 kyu, 5-9 kyu, 10-15 kyu, 16-20 kyu, 21-25 kyu, 26 and up kyu.  Contestants will be entered into a pool to receive $400 scholarships to  this year’s AGA Summer Youth Go Camp, courtesy of the AGF, 16 Scholarships will be awarded. The Junior Division is for youth 11 and under, the Senior Division is for youth under 16 as of August 17, 2011. Only US Citizens may enter the finals, residents may compete in the qualifier; the winners must be able to travel to Romania for the finals, August 12-19 (expenses are covered for the youth players, but not for parents).  To register, e-mail youth@usgo.org with your name, AGA #, date of birth, AGA rating, KGS ID, and citizenship.
- Paul Barchilon, EJ Youth Editor