American Go E-Journal

Redmond to livestream again on Twitch Wednesday night

Tuesday December 10, 2019

Michael Redmond 9P and Chris Garlock will do their second livestream game commentary this week on the AGA’s Twitch channel on Wednesday December 11 at 7P EST. Monday night they streamed an exciting game between Redmond and Otake Hideo 9P, with in-depth commentary and interaction with viewers.

The EJ also plans to livestream from the First Southeast Asia GO Congress, which runs December 15-22 in Singapore. Be sure to follow the AGA’s Twitch channel and get notified of live streams.

The goban, elevated

Tuesday December 10, 2019

Playing go on a traditional goban is one of the joys of the game. But aging knees pose a painful obstacle. Former AGA president Phil Straus elegantly solved the problem with help from fine woodworker Sylas Navar. The table he designed for Straus allows the traditional go board to be used while sitting in chairs. It’s made of hickory and flame maple with walnut inlay, which complements and extends the aesthetics of the goban, where the grain and glow of the wood are an integral part of the game. If you’re interested in such a table, contact Sylas at ironwoodartistry@gmail.com  or check out his website.

Upcoming Go Events: Little Neck and Washington, DC

Monday December 9, 2019

December 14: Little Neck, NY
NYGA Monthly Tournament December
Zhongfan Jian tournaments@ny-go.org 617-921-4105
Stephanie Yin info@ny-go.org

December 14: Washington, DC
NGC Winter Warmer
Gurujeet Khalsa gurujeet.khalsa@nationalgocenter.org 703-626-0777

 

Get the latest go events information.

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Redmond to livestream on Twitch this week

Sunday December 8, 2019

Michael Redmond 9P and Chris Garlock will livestream game commentaries on the AGA’s Twitch channel on Monday, December 9 and Wednesday, December 11, both at 7P EDT. “The live streaming brings these commentaries to a broader audience and enables fans to interact with us in real time,” said Garlock. The popular Redmond Reviews returned to the AGA’s YouTube channel last Friday with a commentary on AlphaGo vs AlphaGo Game 32, after a 6-month hiatus. ” The wait for this is so freaking long, as if I was waiting for an Avenger movie!!!” commented Nguyen tuan anh. Added Sami Helen, “Yesterday I was just about to go on your previous video in this series and ask if you’re still alive. Guess the telepathic communication works after all.” Be sure to follow the channel and get notified of live streams.

Billy Maier defends New Mexico State Champion title

Saturday December 7, 2019

Nine players, all kyu level, came together on November 23 from the New Mexican cities of Santa Fe, Albuquerque, and White Rock to compete for the NM State Go Championship. Players competed to defeat Billy Maier 3k, the reigning champion from 2018. After winning all three games in this three round tournament, Billy remained undefeated and earned the right to hold the perennial trophy until next year. Other prizes included magnetic go sets and Kiseido gift certificates.

Robert Gilman 6k was awarded second place and Kyle Fenmore 1k took third. Some difficulties arose in determining final winners due to the technical reasons associated with small tournaments, and TD Robert Cordingley is looking forward trying a slightly different GoClubsOnline (goclubs.org) pairing strategy next year.

We were very pleased to welcome Janice Kim, who attended as a spectator from Albuquerque. Our thanks go to Peter Shotwell for the go sets, Kiseido Publishing for the gift certificates, and the AGA for their sponsorship.

report and photos provided by Robert Cordingley

The Empty Board: Philosophical Reflections on Go #14

Saturday December 7, 2019

by William Cobb

“The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner” is a film that is hard to forget, though that may be because I was a Cross Country runner in college. Since moving to a very small town in the Ozark Mountains in Arkansas I am discovering another kind of loneliness: that of the go player living where there are no other players within less than a full hour’s drive away. I play lots of games on DragonGo, but it is definitely not the same. There is something important about sitting across the board from another player and placing actual stones on a hard piece of grid-marked wood. Go is a lot more than a fascinating intellectual activity of analyzing tactical and strategic possibilities in a very complicated situation. There is an intimacy of contact and involvement with another human being and real objects that is impossible over the internet. Insofar as go can function as a path to enlightenment it doesn’t happen with an internet connection. The online involvement of the players is just not as real or engrossing, nor is the handling of the stones when it is replaced by clicking a mouse. I really miss these physical and psychological feelings that make playing with another person on an actual set such an enjoyable and enlightening experience. I may have to start making that harrowing drive across the most harrowing roads I have ever encountered.

photo by Phil Straus; photo art by Chris Garlock and Karoline Li

Sixth volume in Black to Play! series published by Board N’Stones

Saturday December 7, 2019

Board N’Stones have just released the sixth and final volume of the Black
to Play! series by Gunnar Dickfield, available in books stores as a paperback or as an ebook from gobooks.com.

The Black to Play! series begins in the first book with problems for beginners – 30k to 25k – and is aimed for players who have just gotten in touch with the game. It provides exercises to help deepen and ingrain the understanding of the rules. They will learn about the correlation and dependencies of the stones to each other, and thereby be able to improve your games. The exercises throughout the six volumes gradually increase in difficulty as the player learns and grows stronger, accompanying the player on the way to Shodan, the first master rank. This sixth volume is dedicated to players from 5k to 1k, and includes more whole-board problems, allowing the learner to apply local problem solving strategies in a larger context and real game situations.

This series is available in English (Black to Play!), German (Schwarz am Zug), and French (A Noir de Jouer). Board N’Stones (Brett und Stein Verlag) is a long time publisher for Go books based in Germany with about 45 titles in print, focusing mainly on Go books in German with some titles in English and French.

-report by Gunnar Dickfield

Evan Lin 7d wins 2019 California State Go Championship

Saturday December 7, 2019

2019 California State Go Champion & Open winner, Evan Lin, accepting his trophies and cash prize from San Diego Go Club President, Ted Terpstra

Go players came to San Diego, last weekend, from all over California: Sacramento, Hayward, San Jose, Beverly Hills, Santa Barbara, Irvine, La Jolla, Carpintera, Aruza, Temecula, Corona… 66 players in all, to contest several California State Go Championships.

The California Open had 15 strong dan players including three 7 dans and six 6 dans. The winner of the Open, with the only undefeated record of 5-0, was Evan Lin 7d, the new 2019 California State Go Champion. He was followed by Yifan Yu 6d (4-1) in second, and five players tied for third with a record of 3-2: Bo Luan 6d, Sato Kosuke 5d, Muzhen Ai 7d, Ming Lin 6d and Yi (Michael) Wang 6d.

2019 California Girl’s U16 Go Champion, Aenaelle Acres

First through Third places in the Handicap Divisions:
Division I: James Acres (4-1) 1k, Osman Kibar (4-1) 4k, Zhenxuan Liu (4-1) 1d
Division II: David Baran (4-1) 7k, Viktor Makoviichuk (4-1) 7k, Pasco Kwok (3.5-.5) 11k
Division III: George Spellman (4-1) 22k, Aenaelle Acres (4-1) 23k, 
Wanyu Abigail Chen (3-2) 17k.
13×13 Youth Open: Vincent Zhang (5-0), Preston Shi Wang (4-1), Ji-Na Sun (3-2)

2019 California State Go Champions
Overall: Evan Lin 7d
U16 Girls: Aenaelle Acres
U16 Boys: Sato Kosuke
Girls’ 13×13: Ji-Na Sun
Boys’ 13×13: Vincent Zhang

-photos by Henry You
-report by Ted Terpstra

2019 California Youth 13×13 Go Championship participants getting certificates from Ted Terpstra, Hai Li 5P, and Henry You (SDGC Vice-President)

Japan Go Congress and Osaka Go Camp planned for 2020: A letter from Ryo Maeda 6P

Saturday December 7, 2019

Dear Go friends,

This is Ryo Maeda 6p of Kansai-Kiin. I have been attending the US Go Congress for the past 19 years.

This year the Kansai Kiin will be organizing the 5th Japan Go Congress in Takarazuka (July 10-12, 2019). And also the Osaka Go Camp for the 8th time (June 21- July 9, 2019).

The website for both events is http://www.osakago.com. (Safari users may have trouble opening the website. A different browser is recommended.)

During the camp, we have league games in the mornings and full teaching programs in the afternoons by professional players every day. The teaching programs will be in English.

On holidays, we will also organize some day trips to places like downtown Osaka, Kyoto, Nara, and a two-day trip to Okayama Himeji and kobe, friendship tournament with Okayama Go players and sightseeing includes dinner and Hmeji castle sightseeing.

I promise that everyone can improve quite a lot through the Camp and the Congress and will have a lot of fun!

We are looking forward to seeing you in Osaka and Takarazuka.

Ryo Maeda 6P, Kansai-Kiin

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The Power Report: A gain and a loss for women’s go; Ida defends Crown; Hirata wins Young Carp; Promotion; Obituaries

Saturday December 7, 2019

by John Power, Japan correspondent for the E-Journal

A gain and a loss for women’s go
Let’s give the bad news first. The sponsors of the Women’s Meijin tournament have announced that they are terminating the tournament. The current titleholder, Fujisawa Rina, will officially hold the title until the end of March 2020. No reason was given.
The good news: The Nihon Ki-in has announced the founding of a new tournament, the Hakata Kamachi Cup Women’s Open Tournament. It will be open to all women professionals in Japan. A preliminary round will start in December to choose the 16 players to compete in the main tournament, which will be held from February to April next year. The semifinals, final, and play-off for third place will be held in Fukuoka on April 13 and 14. First prize is 7,000,000 yen (about $65,000), second 2,000,000, third 1,000,000, and fourth 600,000 yen. The main sponsor is the Medical Corporation Saitama Giant Tree Association (Kyoju no Kai); chairman of its board is Kamachi Ken’ichi, who lends his name to the tournament. As far as I can work, the association’s main business is running the New Kuki (City) General Hospital. This is the second women’s tournament with a medical sponsor, following the Hollyhock Cup, which is sponsored by the Aizu Central Hospital.

Ida defends Crown
The Crown (Okan) title is open to members of the Central Japan or Nagoya branch of the Nihon Ki-in. This year the challenger was Ogata Masaki 9P, who won this title from 1988 to 1991. In the final, played on October 20, Ida Atsushi Okan drew white and won by 1.5 points, winning the title for the fourth year in a row. First prize is 1,700,000 yen (about $15,700).

Hirata wins Young Carp
The Hiroshima Aluminum Cup Young Carp tournament is open to players 30 and under and 7-dan and under. The final of the 14th Cup was held at the Central Japan Newspaper Building in Hiroshima on November 24. Hirata Tomoya 7P (W) beat Matsuura Yuta 7P by 3.5 points. Hirata is a fitting winner, as he hails from Hiroshima. First prize is 3,000,000 yen (nearly $28,000).

Promotion
To 9-dan: Ko Iso (200 wins, as of Nov. 4.)

Obituaries
Izumitani Masanori
Died of prostate cancer on October 18, aged 77. Born on January 3, 1942 in Yamaguchi Prefecture. Became a disciple of Ito Tomoe 7P. Qualified as 1-dan in 1961, reached 7-dan in 1996. Retired in 2018 and promoted to 8-dan. His son is Hideo 8P. His disciples include Konagai Masaru 8P. Izumitani was a director of the Overseas Dep’t. of the Nihon Ki-in for a number of years and also made some instructional tours overseas, including attending the 3rd Go congress at Mt. Holyoke in 1987 as the official representative of the Nihon Kiin.

Ogawa Tomoko
Ogawa Tomoko 6P died in a Tokyo hospital of an undisclosed illness on November 15. According to the Nihon Ki-in, she had been suffering from lower back problems since October and had taken official leave of absence as of October 30. She had returned home after a hospital stay, but her condition suddenly worsened on the 14th.
She was born in Fukui City, Fukui Prefecture, on April 1, 1951, but spent her childhood in Nagoya. She learnt go from her father at the age of 6. She became well known when she won the All-Japan Amateur Women’s Championship at the age of 14; her pageboy hairstyle (okappa) or bob cut added to her fame—she was called, not quite accurately, “the okappa Honinbo.” In 1966, after finishing junior high, she became a disciple of Kitani Minoru. She made 1-dan in 1970 and was promoted to 6-dan in 1995. She won four women’s titles (in the days when there were fewer of them): the 25th Women’s Championship in 1979 and the 26th in 1980; the Women’s Honinbo in 1986; and the Women’s Kakusei Cup in 1987. She became even better known to the public when she served as assistant commentator on the NHK Cup for ten years. In 2008, she became the second woman professional (after Sugiuchi Kazuko) to win 500 games. In 1977, she married the actor Yamamoto Kei, who had taken go lessons from her. They appeared together in a number of TV commercials. She served for two years as president of the Professional Go Players Association and for six years as a Nihon Ki-in director. She published life-and-death problems continuously for 29 years in the Sports Hochi newspaper. She was the author of many books, including the Ishi Press book “The Endgame,” written with James Davies. She was one of the most popular professionals and whatever she did, she always looked serene and competent.

This post has been updated to reflect Izumitani Masanori’s attendance at the 1987 U.S. Go Congress.

Categories: Japan,John Power Report
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