American Go E-Journal

WORLD GO NEWS: Yamashita Takes First Game In Tengen Title Match; Korean Myeongin Reaching Final Stages; Honinbo League Proceeding Slowly

Monday November 16, 2009

YAMASHITA TAKES FIRST GAME IN TENGEN TITLE MATCH: Challenger Yamashita Keigo 9P (left) defeated Tengen title holder Cho U 9P on November 12th to take the first game in their best-of-five-games title match. Cho now holds four of the top seven Japanese titles. He won the Tengen for the first time last year, defeating Kono Rin 9P, who had held it for the preceding three years. Yamashita lost the title to Kono after winning it from Hane Naoki 9P in 2003; he then unsuccessfully challenged for the next three years. Yamashita’s main claim to fame is holding the number one title in Japan, the Kisei five times, including the last four years.
- Bill Cobb, Sources: Go News, GoGameWorld

KOREAN MYEONGIN REACHING FINAL STAGES: On November 12-13, Won Sungjin 9P (right), who had defeated Seo Gunqoo 4P, defeated Hong Sungji 7P by a score of 2-1 (winning his two games by a total of five points) to become the League A final winner in the 37th Myeongin (J: Meijin), which has a complicated structure. This year there are two six-player leagues after the usual preliminary event. The top two players in each league have a best-of-three-games match and the winners of those matches have a final match. Since Lee Sedol 9P, who won this title last year, has taken a leave of absence from the active pro scene, the winner of this final match will be the title winner; this match is a best-of-five-games contest. A further complication arose in one league where a play-off game was needed to determine the second winner. The top two from League B, Lee Changho 9P and Kim Seongje 3P will start their playoff on November 16th. Lee Changho is one of the world’s best-known players, but is not as dominant these days. Kim has never taken a title and is still in his teens. Won won the international Chunwon title and the BC Card Cup in 2007. Of these three only Lee currently holds a title, the Korean KBS Cup, which he has held ten times.
- Bill Cobb, Go News, GoGameWorld, Sensei’s Library

HONINBO LEAGUE PROCEEDING SLOWLY: The eight-player round robin to determine the challenger for Hane Naoki 9P’s Honinbo title is proceeding at its usual leisurely pace. At this point Iyama Yuta 9P (recently promoted for winning the Meijin) and Yamashita Keigo 9P have the best records at 2-0. Neither of these players have even challenged for this title before, let alone won it. Among the other League participants only Takao Shinji 9P (currently 1-1) and Takemiya Masaki 9P (also 1-1) have ever won the Honinbo title. Takao held it three years, from 2005-2007, and Takemiya was Honinbo six times, including four consecutive years in 1985-1988. Yamada Kimio 9P (0-2) was the challenger in 2006, losing to Takao. Cho U 9P (1-1–he lost to Iyama) challenged twice unsuccessfully, in 2001 and 2005. The remaining two players, Yuki Satoshi 9P and Mimura Tomoyasu 9P have also never been the challenger.
- Bill Cobb, from GoGameWorld, Go News, Wikipedia, Wintry Smile

Categories: World
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U.S. GO NEWS: Matsumoto Wins Seattle Iwamoto Youth Tournament; Jie Liang Wins Mass. Tourney

Monday November 16, 2009

MATSUMOTO WINS SEATTLE IWAMOTO YOUTH TOURNAMENT: Ken Matsumoto won the Iwamoto Youth 13×13 Tournament (right) at the Seattle Go Center on Sunday, Nov. 15 with a 4-0 record. The handicapped tournament had prizes for all, including go equipment, books and fun little items. An enthusiastic player, Matsumoto has been coming to the Go Center twice a week.  Hardworking Henry Cai, who gave large handicaps to all of his opponents, won the high school division with a 3-1 record.  Isabel Anderson, a frequent competitor, won the middle school section. Michael Larson, who has been training with neighbor and AGA volunteer Dennis Wheeler, won the grade 3-5 section.  Kindergartner Oliver Alt won the K-2 section.
- report/photo by Brian Allen

JIE LIANG WINS MASS. TOURNEY: A few die-hard players braved the rain Saturday to attend out this year’s Western Mass. Go Club Fall tournament at U. Mass. Amherst.  “Jie Liang 7d made the 3-hour trek from New Hampshire to take apart all four of the Amherst residents we threw at him,” reports Trevor Morris. “ Our visiting faculty member from Japan, Hiroyuki Koguchi, rounded out the small winners circle (right) by losing only to Jie.”

Categories: U.S./North America
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GO PHOTO: “Yes, We Can” Play Go

Monday November 16, 2009

This month’s German Go Journal cover (right) features a photo of President Obama ostensibly playing go with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Board 1 at the U.S. Go Congress; the original photo was taken by Pete Souza and adapted by German Go Journal Editor Tobias Berben.

Categories: Go Photos
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GO SPOTTING: Gaming Doctor ‘Caused Baby Death’; Bill Gates On His Failure At Go

Monday November 16, 2009

A five-month-old Chinese baby died in a hospital because his doctor was busy playing go online while his condition worsened, reports say. Officials from the Jiangsu provincial health department said that Dr Mao Xiaojun — admitted he was playing an online game of go — would be sacked from Nanjing Children’s Hospital, according to a November 13 report by the BBC. Parents have been angered by a series of major health blunders in China; more than 10,000 lawsuits relating to medical disputes have been filed in Chinese courts every year since 2002, the Xinhua news agency reported.

Gates On His Failure At Go: Billionaire Bill Gates (right) cites go as one of his personal failures. “When I was young . . . I wanted to be the world’s best chess player and, of course, I didn’t succeed. I wanted to be the world’s best Go player, too…so I’ve had plenty of disappointments,” Gates said in his 1997 book, Bill Gates Speaks: Insight from the World’s Greatest Entrepreneur. Click here to view the book online; the quote appears on page 227.
- Roy Laird & David Drexler

Categories: Go Spotting
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Hwang to Teach at Go-Ski

Monday November 16, 2009

In the latest winter go holiday event, Hwang In-seong 7d (right) will teach go ‘apres-ski’ during six nights at the traditional Go-Ski in Pragelato – host of the cross-country race during Winter Olympics of 2006 – in the Italian Alps near the French border. The event will take place between December 27 and January 2, organized by AGI, an independent Italian Go Association. Other European holiday go events include the Dutch Wintergo with Yoon Young-Sun 5P and the December 28-31 London Open where Zhang Yanqi 6d – current French Champion – is one of the favorites.
- Peter Dijkema, after an announcement on swissgo.org

Categories: Europe
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Korean Go School Accepting Foreign Students

Monday November 16, 2009

KOREAN GO SCHOOL ACCEPTING FOREIGN STUDENTS: Foreign students have until November 31 to apply at the department of Baduk Studies, Myongji University in Yongin, Korea. Check the pages of the admission office as well as the department’s homepage for details, or email Daniela Trinks.

Categories: World
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Kiseido Releases 1st 3 Volumes of “Graded Go Problems” Series

Monday November 16, 2009

Kiseido has just published the first three books of a seven-volume series, reports publisher Richard Bozulich. Graded Go Problems for Dan Players “is a translation of a 14-volume series put out by the Nihon Ki-in, compressed into seven volumes,” Bozulich tells the E-Journal. Targeted at aspiring dan players, the series is designed to provide low-kyu and low-dan players with the essential grounding in the basics of life-and-death, tesuji, and joseki needed to develop deeper and more accurate reading and the knowledge they need to compete as dan players. In “300 Life-and-Death Problems,” “300 Tesuji Problems,” and “300 Joseki Problems,” the level of the problems starts at around 5-kyu and works up to 3-dan, with the majority in the 1- to 3-dan bracket. The series will continue with volumes four to six, containing life-and-death, tesuji, and joseki problems for 3-dan players and stronger. Volumes seven will cover the opening (fuseki) and the middle game. Expected publication date for Volumes Four to Six is Spring 2010 and Summer 2010 for Volume Seven.

GoGoD Hits 60K-Game Mark

Monday November 16, 2009

GoGoD’s database of professional tournaments now exceeds 60,000 games, reports T Mark Hall. “This is the most accurate, consistent and exact database in existence in the West, backed by John Fairbairn’s Names Dictionary and his Tournament Database,” Hall tells the E-Journal. “While we always add all the games from the current tournament scene, we have been busy in the last six months adding games from the 1950s and 1980s, including previously unknown games by Go Seigen and other games by famous players, not in their collected games,” says Hall. “We pride ourselves on providing games no-one else can easily get, but of course, as always, we are bang up to date.” The Winter 2009 edition is due out on December 7 and the celebrate the 60,000-game milestone, GoGoD is being offered at a discounted rate of $30 for a single copy and $40 for a copy plus an update in a year’s time. Contact Hall at tmark@gogod.demon.co.uk to order or for details.

GO SPOTTING/GO PHOTO: Go During U.S. Internships in ‘42

Monday November 2, 2009

GO SPOTTING/GO PHOTO: A 1942 Life Magazine photo of Japanese American men playing go at the Heart Mountain Relocation Camp in Wyoming is among the Life go photos* found online by EJ reader Troy Anderson. Another one shows “Japanese go game being played at alien relocation camp,” while a third shows Japanese prisoners of war Kiichiro Hiranuma and Toshio Shiratori playing go and a fourth depicts prisoner of war Akira Muto playing go with rough pebbles on a paper board. Click here for background on the relocation and internment of approximately 110,000 Japanese nationals and Japanese Americans during World War 2. In 1988, Congress passed and President Ronald Reagan signed legislation apologizing for the internment on behalf of the U.S. government.
* the site where these photos were originally posted no longer exists; we’ve included new links for three of the four shots; if you locate the one of Akira Muto, please email us at journal@usgo.org

Categories: Go Photos,Go Spotting
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LIVE FROM JEONJU: Yuan Zhou on the 4th Annual Korea Prime Minister Cup

Monday November 2, 2009

By Yuan Zhou 7d
The matches at the just-concluded Korea Prime Minister Cup (KPMC) World Go Championship – the 4th annual — were very exciting, with representatives from 68 nations fighting hard for their countries. I was pleased to finish fifth, the best result yet for the United States in this tournament. Held in Jeonju, Korea, the hometown of famous world champion Lee Changho 9P, the event — which ran October 23-27 — is well organized by the Korean Baduk Association and a special bonus was that Lee Changho himself attended. My only losses were to the Korean representative (on right in photo), who won the championship this year, and the Chinese Taipei representative, a 1-dan professional who was allowed to play because he doesn’t officially become a pro until 2010. The match with the Korean representative was a very complicated game, and we were both down to our last byo-yomi period and one time we only had a couple seconds left on our clock. None of my games were easy, and the Europeans I played were all strong and played well. The New Zealand player I defeated in the last round would have placed 4th place if he had won; Canada’s Gangsheng Shi – this year’s Redmond Cup winner — did also did well, finishing in 8th place. 2009 KPMC World Go Championship official final result (top 16 finishers): 1. Korea; 2. China; 3. Chinese Hong Kong; 4. Japan; 5. USA; 6. Singapore; 7. Chinese Taipei; 8. Canada; 9. South Africa; 10. Thailand; 11. Ukraine; 12. New Zealand; 13. Slovenia; 14. Serbia; 15. France; 16. Netherlands. Click here for complete resultsPhoto: Yuan Zhou, US (left) and Song Hong-suk, Korea; group photo with Lee Changho 9p (center)

Categories: World
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