American Go E-Journal

Upcoming Go Events: Portland, Seattle, Miami, Little Neck, Washington

Monday December 2, 2019

December 7: Portland, OR
Myungwan Kim Visits Portland, OR
Peter Freedman pleefreedman1@comcast.net 971-888-9624

December 7: Seattle, WA
Gala Night of Pair Go
Michael Malveux programs@seattlego.org 206-545-1424

December 12-13: Miami, FL
Miami Go Championship 2019
Oscar Silva info@sharinggo.org 305-240-1008 or 305-978-3294

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.

Categories: Calendar,Main Page
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Your Move/Readers Write: Generous Yuans; Remembering Ogawa; sigma expansion rate

Monday December 2, 2019

Missing the generous Yuans: “The Go community will miss the Yuans (Yutopian to close, offering discounts and seeking potential successor),” writes Noni Redmond. “There was no one more generous than they were.  When we were running the young people’s go congress and I was looking for prizes for the many youth tournaments that were being run the Yuans would ALWAYS, always come forward with generous gifts for the winners.  I loved their Congress store just as much as I loved them. Thank you Yuan family I shall not forget you.”

Remembering Ogawa Tomoko: “Ogawa Tomoko was one of the three Japanese pro visitors to NYC in the 60’s, (In Memoriam: Ogawa Tomoko 6P)” writes Richard Dolen. “In their kimonos  they made a wonderful impression. I played her then, and she was very kind to American players when they visited Japan.”

Explaining the sigma expansion rate: “The 11/09/2019 issue (AGA July Board minutes, Nov. agenda posted) states that at the AGA’s July 19th board meeting, the board ‘moved to double the sigma expansion rate’ for ratings,” writes Frank Brown. “Curious about what this means.”
If you play a lot of games, you will see less of an impact of the change. However if you go for long periods of time between games, for example only play at Congress, you will see more of an impact. If you haven’t played a game for a long while, you will see more of a change in your rating based on your game results when you do play, since your rating may more likely have changed over longer periods of time.

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First Southeast Asia GO Congress set for December 15-22 in Singapore

Monday December 2, 2019

The Singapore Weiqi Association is hosting the very first Southeast Asia GO Congress this month — December 15-22 — at the Asian Civilisations Museum in Singapore. Players will enjoy tournaments, lectures, and exhibition matches with guidance from the 16 pros planning to attend, including Chang Hao 9P, Liang Wei Tang 9P, Ding Wei 9P, Cho Hye Yeon 9P, and US Go Congress favorite Maeda Ryo 8P.

Categories: Main Page,Other,World
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The Power Report: Sakata and Cho Nam-chul enter Hall of Fame; Sumire continues to do well; Ichiriki does well in MLily Cup

Monday December 2, 2019

by John Power, Japan correspondent for the E-Journal

Sakata and Cho Nam-chul enter Hall of Fame

The Go Hall of Fame committee met on October 8 to choose new players to be elected to the go pantheon. This was the 16th induction and two players were chosen: Sakata Eio (23rd Honinbo Eiju) and Cho Nam-chul 9P, the father of professional go in Korea and the founder of the Korean Baduk Institute (= Ki-in).

Sumire continues to do well

The ten-year-old Nakamura Sumire, the youngest professional ever in modern Japan, continues to enjoy good results. When I submitted my last report, published on October 10, her official record was four wins to two losses. She has now improved that to 12-5, a record that any new professional—seven months have passed since her debut—would be satisfied with. When she was playing—and losing—exhibition games with top players, her elevation to 1-dan may have struck some as premature, but now, competing against members of her peer group, she seems to be in her element. She was, after all, assessed and deemed qualified by top players like Cho U and Kobayashi Satoru, who probably know a thing or two about go talent. Her career is developing rapidly. The number of games you play is one index of your success. The more you win, the more you play: Sumire is now competing at the pace of two games a week. All her games are broadcast on the Nihon Ki-in’s server and usually draw twice as many viewers as other games.

Here are her results since my last report.

On October 10, Sumire lost to Li Xuanhao 7P (B) of China in the first round of the 4th MLily Cup. She had been given a seeded seat as a sponsor’s wild card. One of her groups came under severe attack; she needed to make eye shape, but then she would fall behind in territory, so she gambled and played a big move elsewhere; unfortunately, she was unable to save the group, so she resigned after 149 moves. Sumire is popular overseas and a number of players from other countries played practice games with her. Ko Reibun 7P, the Japanese team captain, reported that in one of these games she played superbly to score a win against Wang Chenxing 5P, one of the top Chinese women players.

On October 17, Sumire played Yamada Shiho 7P in Preliminary C of the 59th Judan tournament (unless otherwise stated, games were played at the Kansai headquarters of the Nihon Ki-in in Osaka). After 341 moves, Sumire (B) won by 26.5 points.

On October 24, Sumire played Takabayashi Masahiro 7P in Preliminary C of the Honinbo tournament. Taking black, she won by resignation after 173 moves. Sumire turned up for this game wearing glasses, as her sight has declined recently.

On October 28, Sumire (B) beat Tamura Chiaki 3P by resig. in the first round of the preliminary tournament for the 7th Women’s Hollyhock Cup. The game was played at the Kansai Ki-in.

On October 31, Sumire played Takagi Junpei 2P (aged 26) in the preliminary round of the 45th Kisei title. Taking white, she won by resignation after 160 moves. Her opponent took the lead in the first fight, but she hung on tenaciously, then played a life-or-death move that secured her an upset win.

On November 4, Sumire (B) lost to Tsukuda Akiko 5P by 5.5 points in the preliminary for the 39th Women’s Honinbo tournament. At home, before the game, Tsukuda’s children said to her: “You have a tough opponent today.” She maintained parental dignity by prevailing in a 300-move struggle.

On November 7, Sumire (B) beat Tanemura Sayuri 2P by resig. in Preliminary C of the 59th Judan tournament. Her opponent played a little slackly in the early fighting and let her take the initiative. This was her tenth official win to four losses. Sumire: “I reached this mark more quickly than I expected.” She qualified for Preliminary B.

On November 11, Sumire (W) beat Takao Mari 1P by resig. in the preliminary of the 45th King of the New Stars title. The game was played at the Nagoya branch of the Nihon Ki-in.

On November 14, Sumire (W) beat Udani Shunta 2P by resig. in Preliminary C of the 76th Honinbo tournament. Thanks to a misjudged move by Sumire, Udani took the lead, but late in the game he suffered a hallucination. Sumire picked up a lucky win, but even so Udani commented that she was much stronger—“like a different person”—than when he played her in a study group in May. This was Sumire’s third successive win in Preliminary C, so she qualified for Preliminary B. There she will play Hane Yasumasa 9P, with the winner proceeding to Preliminary A. This game was also her sixth win in a row against male players in official games, a streak which is still alive. (For readers who want to confirm this, the sequence is: Furuta and Yamamoto in my previous report [Oct. 17] and Yamada, Takabayashi, Takagi, and Udani above.

On November 17, the first two rounds of the Young Bamboo (Wakatake) Cup, a tournament open only to players 40 or under at the Kansai branch of the Nihon Ki-in in Osaka, were held. Sumire lost in the first round to Yoshikawa Hajime 3P. Games in this tournament are (presumably) not official, so this result is not counted in her official tally. (Some corrections to my previous report: The Young Carp became an official tournament as of the 6th Cup in 2011, so Sumire’s win and loss count in her official tally. The date of the games was September 23. Also, the game with Yamamoto Kentaro was on October 3, not October 2.)

Ichiriki does well in MLily Cup

The first three rounds of the 4th MLily Cup World Open Championship (“m” is short for “meng,” which means “dream”) were held at the Chinese Qiyuan (= Ki-in) in Beijing from October 10 to 13. Japan had four representatives taking part; of these, three were eliminated in the first round, but Ichiriki Ryo 8P made it to the quarterfinals, scheduled for March next year. This is the first time for two years that a Japanese player has won three or more games in an international tournament; the last time was the 22nd LG Cup, in which Iyama Yuta won four games and reached the final. Nakamura Sumire was given a wild-card seed by the sponsors; this was her debut in an international tournament.

The Chinese-sponsored tournament was a triumph for China: apart from Ichiriki, all the seven quarterfinalists were Chinese. (China did very well in the qualifying tournament held in May and, including its seeded players, had 46 of the 64 seats in the main tournament. Full results are given below:

Round 1 (Oct. 10). Ichiriki (W) beat Yu Zhiying 6P (China) by resig.; Baek Hyunwoo (amateur) (Korea) (W) beat Mutsuura Yuta 7P by 7.5 points; Li Xuanhao 7P (China) (B) beat Nakamura Sumire 1P (Japan) by resig.; Tao Xinran 8P (China) (W) beat Murakawa Daisuke 8P (Japan) by 5.5; Ke Jie 9P (China) (B) beat Wu Guangya 7P (China) by resig.; Xie Ke 7P (China) (B) beat Artem Kachanovskyi 2P (Ukraine) by resig.; Ilya Shikshin 3P (Russia) (B) beat Yi Lingtao 7P (China) by resig.; Meng Tailing 7P (China) (B) beat Liu Zhaozhe 5P (China) by resig.; Wang Wei 4P (China) (W) beat Gu Li 9P (China) by 1.5; Mi Yuting 9P (China) (B) beat Zhou Hongyu 5P (China) by resig.; Yang Dingxin 9P (China) (B) beat Fan Yin 8P (China) by resig.; Xie Erhao 9P (China) (W) beat Zhou Zhenyu (amateur) (China) by resig.; Tan Xiao 9P (China) (W) beat Chen Yaoye 9P (China) by resig.; Lu Liyan 3P (China) (W) beat Wang Zejin 6P (China) by 1.5; Tu Xiaoyu 5P (China) (B) beat Gu Zhihao 9P (China) by 0.5; Tong Mengcheng 8P (China) (B) beat Jiang Weijie 9P (China) by 0.5; Fan Tingyu 9P (China) (W) beat Liao Yuanhe 8P (China) by resig.; Zhao Yan (amateur) (China) (B) beat Li Chengshen 4P (China) by 2.5; Zhang Tao 7P (China) (B) beat Zhen Zijian 7P (China) by resig.; Ding Hao 6P (W) (China) beat Huan Yunsong 7P (China) by resig.; Shin Jinseo 9P (Korea) (B) beat Gu Lingyi 7P (China) by resig.; Park Junghwan 9P (Korea) (B) beat Li Qincheng 9P (China) by resig.; Li Xiangyu 5P (China) (W) beat Jiang Mingjiu 7P (North Am.) by resig.; Kim Jiseok 9P (Korea) (W) beat Andy Liu 1P (North Am.) by resig.; Li Weiqing 7P (China) (W) beat Dang Yifei 9P (China) by resig.; Park Younghoon 9P (Korea) (B) beat Kim Dayoung 3P (Korea) by resig.; Shin Minjun (Korea) (W) beat Peng Liyao 7P (China) by resig.; Byun Sangil 9P (Korea) (B) beat Ma Tianfang (amateur) (China) by resig.; He Yuhan 6P (China) (W) beat Tong Yulin 4P (China) by resig.; Wang Yuanjun 9P (Chinese Taipei) (W) beat Oh Yujin 6P (Korea) by resig.; Xu Jiayang 8P (China) (B) beat Yang Yi 5P (China) by resig.; Shi Yue 9P (China) (B) beat Chen Yusen 5P (China) by resig.

Round 2 (Oct. 11). Ichiriki (W) beat Lu by resig.; Xie Erhao (W) beat Tan by 0.5; Meng (B) beat Li by resig.; Ke (W) beat Shi by resig.; Xie Ke (W) beat Yang by resig.; Xu (B) beat Wang Yuanjun by resig.; Mi (B) beat Tao by resig.; Baek (B) beat Shikshin by resig. (thanks to winning two games, Baek qualified as a pro in Korea); Byun (W) beat He by resig.; Tong (B) beat Tu by resig.; Park Yonghoon (W) beat Shin Minseo by resig.; Ding (B) beat Shin Jinseo by resig.; Park Junghwan (B) beat Li by resig.; Fan (B) beat Zhao by 4.5; Kim beat Li by resig.; Wang Wei (W) beat Zhang by resig.

Round 3 (all results by resig.) (October 12) Ichiriki (B) beat Ding; Mi (W) beat Byun; Xu (B) beat Tong. (October 13) Xie Ke (W) beat Paek; Meng (B) beat Park Yonghoon; Xie Erhao (W) beat Kim; Fan (W) beat Wang; Ke (W) beat Park Junghwan.

Quarterfinal pairings: Mi vs. Xie Erhao, Ichiriki vs. Xie Ke, Ke vs. Fan, Xu vs. Meng

Tomorrow: New Honinbo League; Kyo leads in Tengen; Korea repeats in Gratitude Cup

Categories: Japan,John Power Report
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Undefeated players get ready for second day of competition in the California State Championship

Monday December 2, 2019

Evan Lin (left) versus Steven Hu in a crucial 3rd-round game won by Lin

After the first day of the 2019 California State Go Championship, Yifan Wu 6d and Evan Lin 7d lead the pack of 14 players in the open division with 3-0 records.  Close behind with 2-1 records are Sato Kosuke 5d, Bo Luan 6d, Yixian Zhou 6d, Ming Lin 6d and Xiaocheng (Steven) Hu 6d. With three 7 dans and six 6 dans, the Open division is the strongest ever in San Diego. The five round tournament will conclude with two games on Sunday when the titles of 2019 California State Champion, along with the Under-16 Boy and Girl State Champion, is awarded.

Thirty-five players are contesting the various sections of the handicapped division. Undefeated at 3-0 after the first day are Tyler Moor, James Acres, Pasco Kwok, and George Spellman. This year is the second year that the San Diego Go Club has hosted this Thanksgiving weekend event.

-report and photo by Ted Terpstra

Lee Sedol retirement reported worldwide

Wednesday November 27, 2019

Lee Sedol plays the first move in the first game of the AlphaGo series

Korean Go champion Lee Sedol has officially retired. “The 36-year-old, who scored 18 victories in international competitions and 32 victories in domestic events, submitted his letter of retirement to the Korea Baduk Association (KBA), which oversees Go professionals in South Korea, on Nov. 19, terminating his legendary 24-year career,” reports the Yonhap News Agency. In an interview with the Korean news agency earlier this week, Lee attributed his desire to retire to the rise of AI and the invincibility of programs such as AlphaGo, stating that “with the debut of AI in Go… even if I become the number one, there is an entity that cannot be defeated.” Lee’s retirement and his AI-based reasons were reported internationally by the media with American media such as Vice, the Guardian, Business Insider, and others reporting the story.

Yutopian to close, offering discounts and seeking potential successor

Wednesday November 27, 2019

Yutopian Enterprises is planning to close their doors and are offering all customers an extra 30% discount with the purchase of three or more books until January 2020. Owners and operators Sidney and Katherine Yuan have been fixtures in the vendor room at the US Go Congress for many years, and have consistently supported the American Go community. “Yutopian has donated to the AGF since 2000, and even more importantly they have donated go boards, stones, and bowls which have been auctioned off for many thousands of dollars to support the AGF and US Go,” says AGF President Terry Benson. “We wish them well and thank them for helping grow the game. We will miss them.”

The Yuans are looking for someone willing to continue the business and take over their inventory. Ability to create a new website and about 100-200 square feet of storage space would be required. If you are interested, please call 1-800-988-6463 or send an email to info@yutopian.com.

Stephanie Yin 1P appointed AGA VP for Development

Tuesday November 26, 2019

Stephanie Yin 1P has been appointed to the new position of Vice President for Development at the American Go Association. Yin, a professional go player and teacher, will focus on fundraising, seeking sponsorships and potential collaborations with other national and local Go organizations, and more broadly on promoting and popularizing Go in the US. She’ll also be seeking to develop exchange programs for Go students and Go studies abroad. “We’re thrilled to have Stephanie aboard and look forward to some exciting developments in the months ahead,” said AGA president Andy Okun. For details on any of these efforts, contact Yin at stephanie.yin@usgo.org.

-photo provided by Stephanie Yin

Players at South Bay Go Tournament take full advantage of beautiful autumn setting

Friday November 22, 2019

The Mountainview Go Club held its 4th tournament in the South Bay at the Palo Alto downtown library on Saturday November 9th. “Congratulations go to Hajin Lee 4P who won the overall tournament,” says Michael Kokosenski. “We would also like to recognize three other players who won all of their matches, Tyler Moore 4k, Dave Whipp 6k, and David Elliston 9k.”

Players from all over the Bay Area attended and played 3 rounds of AGA rated games in the calm setting of the library, and afterwards enjoyed game reviews out underneath the brilliant fall foliage.

-report and photos by Michael Kokosenski
This post has been updated; Hajin Lee is 4P

New York Go Association monthly tournaments going strong

Thursday November 21, 2019

This month 26 go players enjoyed another great weekend of competition in the second NYGA Monthly Tournament held by on November 9 in Little Neck, NY. After 4 rounds of close fighting, Kenny Joel 4d clinched first place by direct win over Dazhi Xu 5 dan after three wins each. Alexander Qi 4d took third place. Tommy Xie 1k and Alastair McLaughlin 17k won divisions 2 and 3 respectively with perfect 4-0 records.

The next NYGA monthly tournament will be held December 14. For more information and the schedule of monthly tournaments visit the NYGA Monthly Tournaments page.

-report and photo by Felipo Jian