Welcome to the American Go Association

The Power Report (Part 2 of 3): Iyama defends Honinbo title; Fujisawa defends 5thHollyhock Cup

Thursday July 19, 2018

by John Power, special Japan correspondent for the E-Journal

Iyama defends Honinbo title: The fourth game of the 73rdHoninbo best-of-seven title match was held at the Hotel Hankyu Expo Park in Suita City, Osaka Prefecture, on June 12 and 13. Yamashita Keigo 9P, the challenger, who had white, 2018.07.19_Honinbo5 Yamashita Kataoka 9P moustache Iyamatook the initiative in the fighting on the first day and went into the second day with a slight advantage. But on the evening of the second day he flinched in the face of an all-out do-or-die challenge by Iyama Yuta (or Honinbo Monyu) and in a flash his lead was upset. He resigned after 189 moves. Iyama had now won three games in a row, so Yamashita faced a kadoban. Incidentally, this is the third year in a row that this hotel was scheduled to host a Honinbo game, but on the previous occasions the match ended before it reached the hotel.
The fifth game was played at the Konjakutei inn in Aizu Wakamatsu City, Fukushima Prefecture, on June 30 and July 1. Playing white, Iyama secured a resignation after 228 moves and won the match 4-1. As in the previous game, Yamashita played well and seemed to have the initiative in the middle-game fighting on the second day, but when he launched an attack there was a chink in his armor; Iyama seized the opportunity to unleash a fierce counterpunch that Yamashita was unable to handle. He fought on until he ran out of options.
The prize money is 30,000,000 yen (about $278,000). Iyama has now held the Honinbo title for seven years in a row, so he has matched the record of Sakata Eio (16th to 26th terms); his next goals will be the nine-in-a-row posted by Takagawa Shukaku (7th to 15th terms), then Cho Chikun’s record of ten in a row (44th to 53rd). This is Iyama’s 52nd title. He is in fourth place after Cho Chikun (74), Sakata Eio (64), and Kobayashi Koichi (60), but in his tally of big-three titles (19) he is second only to Cho (29). Also, he has won 41 top-seven titles, just behind Cho’s record of 42.
Like the venues for the first and second games, the venue for the fifth game has a connection with the Meiji Restoration 150 years ago. The restoration of imperial rules was made possible by the victory of the clans supporting the restoration over those supporting the Tokugawa shogunate. After an attack by Imperial forces on Edo, the last shogun, Yoshinobu, surrendered in May 1868, but the Aizu clan, which supported the Tokugawas, continued fighting. The imperial army attacked Aizu Wakamatsu in October and the city surrendered in early November. The most famous incident in this part of the war was a mass suicide of 19 teenaged Aizu samurai in the White Tiger Corps when they concluded (prematurely) that their side had lost. This episode has been very popular in literature and film. For details of the war, check out “the Boshin war” in Wikipedia2018.07.19_Hollyhock Fujisawa and for the suicide “the Byakkotai.” The players visited the White Tiger graves to make offerings the day before the game.

Fujisawa defends 5th Hollyhock Cup: The games in the 5th Aizu Central Hospital Women’s Hollyhock Cup best-of-three were held in the space of eight days. The first two games were held in the Konjakutei, a traditional Japanese inn, in Aizu Wakamatsu City in 2018.07.19_Hollyhock3 Xie Redmond referee FujisawaFukushima Prefecture with just one rest day between them; the score was a tie, so the deciding game was played at the Nihon Ki-in in Tokyo after a break of four days. Xie made a good start in her bid to seek revenge for her loss to Fujisawa last year when she pulled off an upset win in the first game, but Fujisawa fought hard to take the next two games, thus defending her title.
Results
Game 1 (June 15). Xie (W) by resig.
Game 2 (June 17). Fujisawa (W) by resig.
Game 3 (June 22). Fujisawa (B) by resig.
Fujisawa won the inaugural term, so she has now won this title three times. By my count, this is her eighth title. First prize is 7,000,000 yen (close to $65,000).
(Note: Until the third term, this tournament was a knock-out, with the previous winner starting out in the final stage and the final being just one game. Last year the final became a best-of-three, with the winner to defend the title this year. It has taken two years to transform the title to the usual challenger format.)

Tomorrow: Kyo makes good start in Gosei; Kobayashi Koichi wins tournament for senior players; Ryu wins seat in 2018 Samsung Cup; Yamashita leads S League; Cho U keeps lead in Meijin League; Promotions; Obituary: Nishigami Yoshihiko 9P

Share

Your Move/Readers Write: Treat women players equally

Thursday July 19, 2018

Treat women players equally: “If you have to qualify a sentence with ‘I hope it’s not sexist to say…’, just don’t say it at all,” writes Seth Yoder (7/18 Power Report, Nannami Nao wins Senko Cup). “That qualification is akin to saying, “Not to be racist, but…’” The go world, Yoder continues, “is at a crucial point right now. We can decide whether to make this a welcoming environment for women, or to keep it a snobby, insular boy’s club. Treat women players like they’re people in their own right, instead of always identifying/qualifying them by their relationships with men. Resist that impulse.”
Share

Go Spotting: “The Passions of the Mind,” and “1636: The Ottoman Onslaught”

Thursday July 19, 2018

Stone’s “Passions of the Mind: In Irving Stone’s biographic novel about Sigmund Freud, “The Passions of the Mind,” there is the following sentence, reports2018.07.11_The_Passions_of_the_Mind David Matson: “Sigmund stayed until one in the morning, playing Japanese Go.” It occurs in Section 9 of Book Two: The Longing Soul.

2018.07.11_1636_The_Ottoman_Onslaught“1636: The Ottoman Onslaught”: “Go is mentioned briefly in ‘1636: The Ottoman Onslaught” by Eric Flint,” writes  Mike Goerss. “The novel is in a series of an alternate history where a small American town finds itself in the middle of Germany in 1632. Third to last page, speaking about fighting the Turks as they invade Austria: ‘It is more like a game of go than chess. . . It is more of a game of position than maneuver.’”

“The Next Move”: “AlphaGo Zero, Google’s experimental AI, exists to play Go. There is no awareness, only intelligence.” So begins John Cooper Hamilton’s “The Next Move,” a very short story about AlphaGo in Daily Science Fiction, sent along by Paul Celmer, who published a non-go story in DSF last July, “Spooky Action at a Distance.”

“The Incredible Inventions of Intuitive AI”: Maurice Conti’s “The Incredible Inventions of Intuitive AI” TED talk video mentions AlphaGo beating Lee Sedol, reports Shawn Ray.

 

Share
Categories: Go Spotting,Main Page
Share

Andrea Baisero 4K & Mark Nahabedian 12K top MGA’s Skip Ascheim Memorial Handicap Tournament

Wednesday July 18, 2018

Participants in the Massachusetts Go Association ‘s annual Skip Ascheim Memorial Handicap Tournament held July 15 at 2018.07.18_MA Go assn-Eric_Osman_Andrea_Baisero_Mark_Nahabedian_Inkyu_Chung_Howard_Cornettthe Boylston Chess Club in Cambridge ranged from 5 dan to 14 kyu. “It was a relaxed friendly occasion,” reports TD Eva Casey, “though we did remember solemnly not only Skip, the founder of our club, but also our good friend, and a regular at our tournaments, Wayne Yee Mon (1958-2018) , who died suddenly June 8.”

Two players won all four games. Those players tied for first place, splitting the combined first and second place cash prizes equally. The third place cash prize was won by the three-game winner whom our software deemed had the winningest opponents. The other two three-game winners got honorable mention.

Results:
First Place (4 wins) Andrea Baisero 4-kyu and Mark Nahabedian 12-kyu
Third place (3 wins) Eric Osman 1-dan
Honorable Mention (also 3 wins)   Inkyu Chung 3-kyu and Howard Cornett 10-kyu.

photo: (l-r) Eric Osman, Andrea Baisero, Mark Nahabedian, Inkyu Chung, Howard Cornett; click here for more photos

 

 

Share

Boot-camp for absolute beginners at Go Congress

Wednesday July 18, 2018

If you’re spouse, friend, or parent of a go player attending the U.S. Go Congress this year, the annual gathering is offering 2018.07.18_AndyLiusomething new: a way for beginning go players to rapidly get up to speed. Led by Andy Liu 1P (left), building on techniques he has evolved in teaching beginners2018.07.18_congress-app, the boot-camp strives to get brand new players near the single-digit kyu level by the week.

Perhaps you’ve wanted to learn and participate but felt intimidated; this is a friendly environment just for you. The camp meets every afternoon (except Wednesday) between lunch and dinner. Come for the entire experience or drop in for a day or two.

There’s still time to register for Congress. You can find more details about this event and all the great things happening at Congress too by downloading the free mobile app for iOS and Android devices.

Share

Problem of the Week

Good Style

Black to play