American Go E-Journal

The Budget-Conscious Go Player’s Guide to the 2011 U.S. Go Congress

Monday May 30, 2011

How did 2011 U.S. Go Congress co-director Lisa Scott attend last year’s Congress for less than $600, including travel? Here are some of her tips on how to save money on this year’s Congress, set for July 30 – August 7 in Santa Barbara, CA. “Registering early to get the full discount is a must,” Scott notes. This year, that means registering by June 1. “Next, I usually find a cheap way to stay offsite, staying with a friend who lives nearby or with friends in a nearby hotel. Last year, I stayed with three friends in an extended-stay hotel, so we had a kitchen, which made meals cheaper.” And travel? “Last year I also drove to Colorado Springs with my sister, which saved a ton on airplane tickets. And in 2008, I turned the trip into a longer vacation by taking a week to visit national parks on the way, which made the trip even more unforgettable!”

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World Go News May 2011

Monday May 30, 2011

36th Kisei League

On 24 May 2011, the Nihon Ki-in announced players who will take up the last four spots in the 36th Kisei League. Seto Taiki 7P of the Kansai Ki-in, Akiyama Jiro 8P, Kono Rin 9P and Kobayashi Koichi 9P. These players were selected based on playing through single knock out preliminary matches and will join top performers from the 35th Kisei League. The winner of the 36th Kisei League will earn the right to challenge Kisei title holder, Cho U 9P, in 2012 for the 36th Kisei. The 36th Kisei League players are Iyama Yuta 9P, Yamashita Keigo 9P, Hane Naoki 9P, Kato Atsushi 8P, Kono Rin 9P, Seto Taiki 7P, Takao Shinji 9P, Yamashiro Hiroshi 9P, Yoda Norimoto 9P, Ryu Shikun 9P, Kobayashi Koichi 9P and Akiyama Jiro 8P.

Joanne Missingham turns 17

On 26 May 2011, Joanne Missingham 5P, who plays professionally under her Chinese name, Hei Jiajia, turned 17 while playing in the 4th Taiwan Qiwang, a Taiwanese Go tournament. She received a received birthday cake in the shape of a Go board as a surprise gift from fans. The cake even had edible stones! Missingham’s rapid promotion (she was promoted to 2P in late 2010 and 5P in early 2011) has not escaped the notice of international Go bodies. Japan has invited her to take part in this year’s Nakano Cup, a prestigous tournament for under-20s. Previous winners of this tournament include none other than this year’s Judan and Bosai Cup winner, Iyama Yuta, who won the Nakano Cup in 2005, 2006 and 2007.

32nd World Amateur Go Championships begin

On 28 May 2011, as a prelude to the 32nd World Amateur Go Championship (WAGC), Otake Hideo 9P played an exhibition match with local school girl Ohara Moeka in a Castle Game reenactment at Matsue Castle in Shimane Prefecture. Ohara was a quarter finalist at the Japanese Girls High School Go Tournament in the individual division and received a 3 stone handicap from Otake. Both players donned elaborate kimonos to evoke the Edo period, during which the famous Castle Games took place. Shimane Prefecture was the birth place of two famous players – Honinbo Dosaku in 1645 and Iwamoto Kaoru in 1902.

- Jingning; based on her original report at Go Game Guru. Photos: Joanne Missingham 5P (top right) and Ohara Moeka reenacts castle game with Otake Hideo 9P (bottom left)

World Amateur Go Championship; Round 1 Update

Sunday May 29, 2011

The playing area on the third floor of the Shimane Prefectural Assembly Hall is divided into a main inner room with nineteen boards, fourteen of which have official game recorders, and a smaller outer area with ten boards. In round 1 the solo seat went to Spain’s Joan Flos. The signal to start the games on the other boards was given by chief referee Takemiya Masaki just after 9:30a on Sunday, May 29, and live online broadcasts of four of the recorded games began immediately. AnotherWorld Amateur Go Championship (WAGC) was under way. photo at right: the Seicho Yasuragibushi Preservation Society gives a performance of traditional songs and dances, accompanied by drums and shamisen at the opening ceremonies of the 32nd annual WAGC.

In the inner room, spectators gathered around Board 13, where Hironori Hirata (Japan) was playing Alexander Selby (U.K.). Next to them Thomas Debarre (France) was taking on Kanh Binh Do (Vietnam); this game also attracted attention.

The tournament is being played with time limits of one hour per player, followed by three renewable 30-second overtime periods. Timing was handled by new tournament clocks, made by Citizen Corporation for the Nihon Kiin. The beep tones of the clocks provided a soft electronic background to the click of slate and shell on wood.

Following WAGC tradition, in the first round the middle half of the field drew for opponents from the upper and lower quarters. At the end of the round, every game turned out to have been won by the higher-seeded player. Ranka asked its professional commentator Hiroshi Yamashiro 9P of the Nihon Kiin and referees Shimpei Kuwamoto 6P (also of the Nihon Kiin) and Yasuhiro Nakano 9P (Kansai Kiin) for their observations on the round.

“They are strong,” said Shimipei Kuwamoto. “In the post-mortem reviews they were all very definite about their ideas. It was clear that they were bent on playing their own games. One player (Kamil Chwedyna, Poland) played several of his opening moves on the second line. At first glance it looked as if his hand must have slipped, but he knew what he was doing. I guess he had worked this strategy out in advance.” Chwedyna won his game.

“The age range was impressive,” noted Yasuhiro Nakano. Aside from 84-year-old Hironori Hirata of Japan, there are quite a few players in the 50-70 age bracket, and then there are the young players from Southeast Asia. “It will be very interesting to see how strong the ones from Indonesia (14), Singapore (22), Thailand (21), and Vietnam (22) become,” said Nakano. The players from Indonesia, Singapore, and Thailand won their first games, as did Hironori Hirata.

“The game between the two young players from Austria (Viktor Lin, 19, at left, above) and Israel (Jonathan Lidor, 18, right) was riveting,” said Hiroshi Yamashiro. “Since this was the first round, most of the games were somewhat one-sided, those two players were extremely well matched. Their game wasn’t recorded, but it was very good, with interesting content. They are both already playing at the 6-dan level. They have a bright future.” Viktor Lin emerged the winner in that game, with opponent Jonathan Lidor wryly commenting that  “Yesterday I played a friendly game against Viktor. We said that whoever won that game would have to lose today, and that’s what happened, after I blundered.”
- James Davies, Ranka Online; click here for his complete report. Note: the American go E-Journal team of Chris Garlock and John Pinkerton was unable to attend this year’s WAGC due to a family emergency.

AGA Board Nominations Closing Soon

Monday May 23, 2011

There’s now less than a month before AGA board nominations close on June 15.  Things are off to a quick start with Gordon Castanza and Paul Celmer nominated in the western and eastern regions respectively.

If you are a full member of the AGA you may nominate, or self-nominate, a candidate in your region by writing or email at elections@usgo.org.
Details of the qualifications for office and election schedule are online.  Chapter representatives must check there for special instructions due to mailing list problems

Categories: U.S./North America
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Limited Space at June 4 Santa Monica Coffee Cup

Monday May 23, 2011

The fifth annual Santa Monica Coffee Cup — which has just been designated an NAIM Qualifier  — will be held Saturday, June 4 at the UnUrban Coffeehouse in Santa Monica, California. There is an absolute limit of 50 players so pre-registration is essential. The tournament fee is $10, plus AGA membership or renewal if necessary. Send an e-mail to Andy Okun at abc@okun.name with your name and AGA number if you have one. “Eric Cotsen, should he attend, plays free,:” reports Okun. “The temperature is liable to be cool and comfortable and the sky an attractive blue, as usual.” This year’s theme color is Orange.

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Last Week for Full Discount at Go Congress

Monday May 23, 2011

This is the LAST WEEK to receive the full discount for the 2011 US Go Congress!  Sign up by June 1 at www.gocongress.org!

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1st-Round Winners in Wisonet Cup

Monday May 23, 2011

Winners in the recent first round of Wisonet Cup Go Tournament were Minshan Shou (defeated Forest Song); Xinyu Tu (d. Xiruo Liu); Kevin Huang (d. Benjamin Lockhart); Andy Liu (d. Qiyun Zhu). Stay tuned for details on when Round 2 will be held.
- Ronghao Chen, TD

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Stony Brook Hosts First-Annual Tourney

Monday May 23, 2011

The Stony Brook (NY) University Go Club hosted its first annual tournament on May 7. The 4-round tournament attracted 28 players and was held during Stony Brook University’s Sakura Matsuri celebration, which included a number of other Asian cultural events which tournament goers were able to enjoy between matches. Anthony Garcia won the tournament. The tournament boasted free entry, AGA sanctioned games and $250 worth of prizes. “If all goes well, the SBU Go Club will host another tournament at the same time next year,” reports SBU Go Club President-Elect Sean Burton.

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NAIM Qualifier in DC-Baltimore Set for June 17-18

Monday May 23, 2011

The Capital Go Club and Greater Washington Go Club (GWGC) will host a North American Ing Masters (NAIM ) qualifier in the DC metro area June 17-18. The opening round will be on Friday 6/17 in the evening at the GWGC in Bethesda, MD, and the remaining three rounds on 6/17, so that players do not have to squeeze four games into one day. Email agatd1@gmail.com to register. All levels are welcome to watch and/or play free or rated games.  Stay tuned for details.
- Zhiyuan ‘Edward’ Zhang, NAIM Co-Director

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NAIM Online Qualifier 1 Registration Deadline 5/28

Monday May 23, 2011

The first online NAIM tournament qualifier will be held on June 4-5. It will be a 4-round online tournament and there will be two rounds (12 PM EST, 6 PM EST) each day. Email tournaments@usgo.org to register. Please inform TD of your status (Skype ID, KGS ID, AGA ID, Green card holder or US Citizen) when you register. The deadline for registration is 8 PM EST May 28. Online qualifier 2 will be on KGS during June 25-26, and the deadline for registration is June 10.
- Tengxiao Yang, NAIM Online Qualifier Co-director

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