News from the American Go Association

April 11, 2005

In This Issue:

U.S. GO NEWS: Oto Tops SF; Go Origins; Go Events Popping Up All Over; Free Yearbooks Going Fast; Alert Readers; Coming Up In Friday's Member's Edition; This Week's New Classified Highlights
WORLD GO NEWS: Takao Shinji Honinbo Challenger; Gu Li Holds Onto Tianyuan; Finals Set For Pandanet Open; Czechs Dominate European Tour Events
PROFESSIONALLY SPEAKING: International Pro Tournaments II


OTO TOPS SF: Robert Oto 5d took top honors in the San Francisco Go Club Spring tournament held April 2-3. Directed by Steve Burrall and Roger Ku, 40 players participated, including 24 children. The full Winner's Report:
     Div. 1 (6d-2d): 1st: Robert Oto 5d; 2nd: Gina Shi 5d; 3rd: Michael Kass 4d; Div. 2 (2d-3k): 1st:  Lawrence Ku 2d; 2nd: Tony Zhang 1d; 3rd (tie): Jinlong Zhang 2d and Jacky Chong 2d; Div. 3 (4k-12k): 1st: Karoline Burrall 10k; 2nd: Ariana Tsai 6k; 3rd: Joy Zhang 10k; Div. 4 (12k-29k): 1st:  Roger Schrag 12k; 2nd: Albert Tao 12k; 3rd: Julie Burrall 16k

GO ORIGINS: Since 1975, when it was first held at John Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland, Origins has been the place for all gamers with all kinds of gaming tastes to meet. Annually people gather to see the latest offerings from game companies, honor the best games of the year, and participate in game events. Go will again be part of the mix at this year's event, Origins 2005, set for June 30 to July 3 at the Convention Center, in Columbus, Ohio. Joe Carl is seeking volunteers to help him organize and staff a tournament at the convention "Thousands are expected at this popular event," reports Carl, "and this is a great opportunity to expose them to go." Email or call 614-326-1618. Find out more about Origins at

GO EVENTS POPPING UP ALL OVER: No less than 14 go tournaments or events are scheduled for the next month, including five tournaments coming up this weekend alone, as well as the Cotsen Go Tournament at the end of the month. See the Calendar of Events below for full details, or check for latest updates online at  Not listed but should be? Email us today at

FREE YEARBOOKS GOING FAST! Just 25 free Yearbooks are left in this month's special offer of a free copy of the brand-new 2004 American Go Yearbook for the first 50 new members to join the AGA during the month of April. The 100-page volume (a $30 value) features the best of last year's E-Journals, from game commentaries and reviews to columns and more, including a CD with all the year's EJ content (including all game commentaries!). Member benefits include the weekly Member's Edition with attached game commentaries and reviews, as well as the 2005 Yearbook, which will be published in January, 2006. If you've been thinking about joining, now's the time! Sign up now at

ALERT READERS: A record number of alert readers have already spotted last week's alerts hidden in the game commentaries attached to Friday's E-Journal; winners are chosen at random from those who correctly respond (you must find the move where the Alert is hidden), and the deadline is this Thursday at 5P so those who have not yet responded still have a chance to win a $10 gift certificate to the go vendor of your choice!

COMING UP IN FRIDAY'S MEMBER'S EDITION: Kaz on "Teaching Amateurs" and "Common Amateur Mistake 3," Jonathan Nagy 7d plays poker in Monte Carlo, newbie Dale Hoopingarner reviews "Go! More Than a Game," plus Zhou Heyang 9P vs Lee Changho in Round 1 of the 5th Chunlan Cup of Korea and Yilun Yang takes a look at a Shodan Challenger Eric Lavigne's game. All this and the latest news updates! Non-members can sign up now at

THIS WEEK'S NEW CLASSIFIED HIGHLIGHTS: Looking for "The Breakthrough to Shodan," and go players in the Asheville (NC) area, and old Japanese go equipment for sale. Check these out in Go Classified below!


TAKAO SHINJI HONINBO CHALLENGER: Takao Shinji 8P has come out on top of the Honinbo League, but it wasn't easy. With only one game to go, he had an impressive 6-0 record, with five wins by resignation. His final game was against Cho Sonjin 9P who was 5-1, but Cho won the game by a half point, giving them both 6-1 records. This required a play-off that resulted in a smashing victory for Takao, who forced Cho to resign after 111 moves, so Takao gets to challenge Cho U 9P for the title. John Power reports on the Nihon Kiin home page that this is the first Honinbo title match with both players in their twenties since Kobayashi Koichi unsuccessfully challenged Cho Chikun in 1982. It's Takao's first shot at one of the "big three" titles in Japan (Kisei, Meijin, Honinbo). He has a slight edge at 6-5 in his record against Cho U, so it should be an exciting match.

GU LI HOLDS ONTO TIANYUAN: In his defense of his Tianyuan title in China, Gu Li 7P won the first game in his three game match against Zhou Heyang 9P handily, but then was badly beaten in the second game as a result of dubious decisions about strategy. Instead of seizing the opportunity to make solid center territory he chose to chase a weak group that ended up destroying his own territory. So it all came down to the third game. Zhou seemed to have the early advantage with a big moyo and good thickness, but he made a mistake at move 155 with a trade that lost points. Gu managed to pull out a win by 1.5 points with White, taking the title for the third year in a row. You can download the game records at

FINALS SET FOR PANDANET OPEN: The preliminary round of the Pandanet Open Professional and Amateur Internet World Go Championship has concluded with eight players, all pros, left standing for the finals. The finals will be over-the-board games in Tokyo on April 16th and 17th. The games will be shown live on IGS. The group includes such famous players as Kobayashi Koichi 9P, Hane Naoki 9P, and Sakai Hideyuki 7P. A number of game records from late rounds can be found at

CZECHS DOMINATE EUROPEAN TOUR EVENTS: In the 2004-2005 Toyota Pandanet European Go Tour, which ended with the Paris tournament in March, the overall winner was Radek Nechanicky 6d of the Czech Republic. Though Nechanicky only took sixth place in Paris, it gave him enough points to win the Tour and the 1500 Euro first prize. In second place was young Ondrej Silt, who is also a 6d from the Czech Republic. Nechanicky and Silt both played in eight of the twelve Tour events. Tibor Pocsai 6d and Diana Koxzegi 5d, both from Hungary and both playing in five events, were third and fourth. Meanwhile, in the 2004-2005 European Cup, in which the most recent and final event was the tournament in Zurich in early April, the overall winner is Ondrej Silt. Vladimir Danek 6d of the Czech Republic was second, due to gaining nine points by winning in Zurich. Silt was still five points ahead, having won in Hamburg and Leipzig and gaining points in two other events. Willem-Koen Pomstra 5d from th e Netherlands was third. Silt and Danek played in four of the twelve events, and Pomstra played in five.
PROFESSIONALLY SPEAKING: International Pro Tournaments II
by William Cobb
     Besides the three noted in the first part of this report (the Fujitsu, Ing and LG Cups, 3/28 EJ), there are several other "world" pro tournaments:
     THE TOYOTA DENSO WORLD OZA CUP is the newest event of this type. Sponsored by the Japanese companies, the grand prize is about $265,000 US plus a Lexus car. It occurs every two years and the first two events were won by Koreans. The North American representatives in 2004 were Feng Yun and MingJiu Jiang; Europe was represented by Alexandre Dinerchtein, Andrej Kulkov, and Frank Janssen. The final is a single game.
     THE CHUNLAN CUP started in 1998 and now runs on about a two-year cycle. It has Chinese sponsors and a best-of-three-game final. The winner's prize is about $150,000 US and the tournament uses Chinese rules (so the dame are filled). In the just- ended 5th Chunlan, the American representative was Michael Redmond, and Guo Juan represented Europe. Lee Changho won for the second time in a row.
     A special international event was sponsored by the Nihon Kiin this year, THE INTERNET INTERNATIONAL PRO CHAMPIONSHIP, with two players from Japan and one each from Korea, China, Taiwan, North America, South America, and Europe. Feng Yun was the North American representative, and Alexandre Dinerchtein represented Europe. The final will be between Gu Li of China and Kobayashi Koichi of Japan, but it has not yet been scheduled.
     THE SAMSUNG CUP is also open to players from non-Asian countries at the preliminary stage. Every pro in the world and some amateurs are welcome to participate in the initial preliminaries in Seoul (at their own expense), and a large crowd competes for the sixteen slots that are available in the first round of the official tournament. An additional sixteen players from China, Japan, and Korea are seeded or selected for the tournament. Yoda Norimoto of Japan won the first Samsung Cup in 1996. Since then it has been all Koreans, except for Cho Chikun's winning (by forfeit) in 2003.
     There are a number of other international tournaments, including match-ups between the winners of similar titles in different countries and contests between teams of players from different countries. Some of these, as well as major national pro tournaments, will be covered in later reports.


WANTED: Looking for a copy of "The Breakthrough to Shodan." Contact: Ryen Castillo

FOR SALE: Japanese go equipment: 6mm very old shell/slate stones, $75; 7mm new shell/slate stones, $100; 7mm used glass stones/Ishi Press box, $25; 6mm used glass stones/plastic bowls, $30; 8mm new glass stones/wood bowls, $50; new large Go Seigen bowls, $65; very old Kitani bowls, $45; 7/16-inch used folding board, $30; 11/16-inch used folding board, $35; 1-inch used slotted board, $60; 1-inch new slotted board, $70. CONTACT Anton Ninno,

WANTED: Go players in the Asheville (NC) area. Contact Rodney Keaton at

BUY, SELL, OR TRADE equipment, books and go materials, find a go teacher, find someone to play go with! Complete go classifieds online at


April 16 & 17: College Park, MD
2005 John Groesch Memorial Tournament
Steve Mount

April 16 & 17: Houston, TX
Houston Spring Go Tournament 2005
Robert Cordingley 281-331-1614

April 17: Menlo Park, CA
2nd California High School Goe Tournament
Jason Pan

April 17: Somerville, MA
MGA Spring Handicap Tournament
Zack Grossbart 617-497-1232

April 17: Cleveland, OH
Cleveland Go Club Spring Tournament
Paul Jacobs 216-371-2628

April 23: Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
Alberta Open 2005
Chuck Elliott 780-426-5716

April 23: Seattle, WA
Cherry Blossom Festival Tournament
Jon Boley 206-545-1424

April 30: Hartford, CT
CCC Weiqi-Spring Tournament
Bill Fung 860-648-1527

April 30: Middlebury, VT
Vermont Annual Spring Tournament
Peter Schumer 802-388-3934

April 30-May 1: Los Angeles, CA
2005 Cotsen Go Tournament

May 1: Brooklyn, NY
Go Demonstration
Jean Claude Chetrit 718-638-2266

May 1: Seattle, WA
Monthly Ratings Tournament
Jon Boley 206-545-1424

May 7: Dearborn, MI
Dearborn Go Tournament III
Danny Walters 313-336-4622

May 12: Competing on KGS
4th Annual National K-12 Team Championship
Christopher Vu 281-480-8615

This is a digest of events for the next month only; for a complete listing see the Tournament Calendar on the AGA website:
For the European Go Calendar see

GET LISTED & BOOST TURN OUT! Got an upcoming event? Reach over 7,000 readers every week! List your Go event/news In the E Journal: email details to us at

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