Over eighty go players gathered in San Diego on the weekend after Thanksgiving to contest the 5-round 2022 King Cup – California State Go Championship. The Open section had sixteen strong players including an 8-dan, two 7-dans, and eight 6-dans. All games were played at the comfortable San Diego Chess Club (2020 American Chess Club of the Year) in Balboa Park. The state tournament was hosted by the San Diego Go Club for the 5th year.
The result was a split decision: Lambert Li 6-dan, won the tournament with an unblemished 5-0 record and Yifan Qu 6-dan, was crowned the 2022 California State Go Champion as the highest scoring California resident (San Diego, CA) in the Open, with a 4-1 record (winning on a tie breaker over Alvin Huang 4-dan of Lake Forest, CA).
In the 58-player Handicap section, Xinran Gao 2-dan, won the dan section (16-players) with a 4-1 record over Chunwei Shi 2-dan, and Jake Kim 1-dan on a tiebreaker.
In the single-digit kyu handicap section, Alexander Lo 2-kyu, had a perfect weekend at 5-0. Both Sheldon Li 7-kyu, and Russell Bernhardt 5-kyu, finished 4-1 along with two others and attained their places by tie breaker.
The double-digit kyu handicap section had two brothers, Lorence Tsai 12-kyu and TsungYu Tsai 11-kyu, finish with 4-1 records. Bob Zhao 10-kyu was third in the section.
There were also nine players in the Beginners tournament of the King Cup. Ryan Lin 35-Kyu won with a record of 5-0. Go professional Hai Li 5P, was the tournament director for the beginners and analyzed their games as part of their education. SDGC has a tradition of honoring with a trophy the youngest player to compete. This year it was a 5-year-old girl.
Each day all of the participants were treated to a free pizza lunch. It took 30 pizzas a day to feed the group.
The tournament saw many new members joining the AGA or renewing their memberships. SDGC now has 108 AGA members. San Diego Go Club president Enrique Garcia said that it was encouraging to see support for the tournament by go players from all over the state. Several players came down to San Diego from the San Francisco Bay area and Fresno.
The SDGC thanked tournament sponsors for their generous support, including the Bi Family, Rubio’s Coastal Grill, Yellow Mountain Imports, State Farm Insurance, and the San Diego Chess Club.
The next major event to be sponsored by the San Diego Go Club will be the 12th annual San Diego Go Championship in the spring of 2023, date TBD.
photos by Jackson Hranek and Enrique Garcia; reporting by Ted Terpstra