American Go E-Journal

GO SPOTTING: Seki on Bar Karma, Triple Ko in Film Comment

Monday March 14, 2011

Bar Karma, a show on Current TV, mentioned seki and discussed it on a recent episode, reports EJ reader Laurie. And in the Jan/Feb issue of Film Comment, Bob Barber reports that a headline on page 8 that says “Triple Ko.” Although Barber says “I couldn’t make out the connection, I’m happy to see go terminology creeping into American English.”

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Guo Juan Internet School Starting ’11 Second Term

Sunday March 13, 2011

Guo Juan’s Internet Go School is currently accepting enrollment for Group Classes for the 2011 second term, which begins April 9/10. The group class participants will also receive a 20% discount on annual membership for her  Audio lectures. The teaching faculty includes Guo Juan 5P, Jennie Shen 2P and Mingjiu Jiang 7P. For details visit the Group Class website.

Categories: World
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Tormanen & Wang Tie for First at Irish Go Congress

Tuesday March 8, 2011

The 2011 Irish Go Congress proved to be one of the biggest on record, with a total of 62 players in attendance. As with all Pandanet Tour events, it was truly a multinational event, clocking up a total of 11 different countries in play. At the top was one of Europe’s rising stars, Antti Törmänen 6d, who tied for first place with local hero Wei Wang 6d on 4 wins from 5. In joint third were Ondrej Silt 6d (l) and Pavol Lisy 5d on 3 wins. Full results. The Rapid tournament on Friday night was won by Irish President Ian Davis (at left rear, recording), in a noble effort to save the local economy. Click here for photos.
photo: Ondrej Silt 6d (l) play’s Finland’s Juri Kuronen 5d as Ian Davis records the game. photo by Tiberiu Gociu

Categories: Europe
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’11 Congress: Early Registrants Get Lower Price

Monday March 7, 2011

“By far we’ve received more questions about the Congress pricing than anything else” say organizers Lisa Scott and Andrew Jackson. “We want to bring unprecedented levels of transparency to Go Congress pricing, and we understand that can make it a bit difficult to budget.  In our ‘worst-case’ scenario, adult registration will be $365.  Students (19-25) will be $315, youth between 13 and 18, $265, and kids under 13 are $215.” As sponsorships, fundraising, and costs finalize in the coming months, Scott and Jackson say, “we will be able to cut these prices, perhaps by as much as $100!  However, only those who register before May 1st will receive these discounts — the sooner we know our numbers the better we can make this for everyone, so register online today!” Comments and feedback are welcome at andrew.jackson@gocongress.org

Categories: U.S. Go Congress
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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