American Go E-Journal

Go Spotting: Why Chinese go players aren’t winning

Sunday November 27, 2022

“When a nation’s fortunes rise or fall, so too do its fortunes in Go.” That’s from “Why Chinese players of Go aren’t winning any more” in the Nov. 12 issue of The Economist, quoting Marshal Chen Yi, a go-playing soldier in China’s civil war. The column notes that after decades of dominating the go world, “Chinese players have been losing more than they have been winning.” Things reached a new low this month when not a single Chinese player qualified for the Samsung Fire Cup. Some – including the EJ’s own Stephen Hu — say it’s because Chinese players have not embraced AI as much as other international players, while others say the strict covid lockdown in China has prevented elite Chinese players from competing in the weekly domestic tournaments that provided invaluable experience. The lockdowns have also made it harder for China’s national team to meet to analyze opponents’ styles. “It has been very difficult for us to do intensive training,” team coach Yu Bin told The Economist.  

Thanks to Dave Weimer for passing this along. Send your go-spottings to us at

Categories: China,Main Page