News from the American Go Association

SPECIAL U.S. GO CONGRESS EDITION: Plus, now you can experience a virtual US Go Congress online by checking out our brand-new Congress Updates page at   Latest news and reports, tournament updates, plus photos and games, are posted throughout each day by the Congress E-Team. Check IGS and KGS as well; som e games are being broadcast live.

August 9, 2005
Volume 5, #68

In This Issue:
LATEST GO NEWS: Jie Li & Jong Moon Lee To Vie For 2005 Ing; Xuefen Lin Wins 3rd Straight ; Zhang Wins Pro-Pro; 58 Undefeated In U.S. Open; Lebl Leads Self-Paired; Midnight Maddest; Chen, Zhang Win Redmond Cup; By The Numbers; Heads You Live, Tails I Die
GAME COMMENTARY: The Knife-Edge Game
DINING WITH THE PROS: The $50,000 Banana
ATTACHED FILES: 2005.08.09 Masters2 Thomas Hsiang-Jie Li


JIE LI & JONG MOON LEE TO VIE FOR 2005 ING: Jie Li and Jong Moon Lee are undefeated after three rounds and lead the 2005 Ing Invitational. The final round is scheduled for Friday afternoon and will be broadcast live on the IGS and KGS. Roun d 3 results from Tuesday night: Jie Li (defeated Joey Hung); Jong Moon Lee (Eric Lui); Thomas Hsiang (Edward Kim); Dewu Zhang (Jung Hoon Lee); Yongfei Ge (Ted Ning); Yuan Zhou (Lianzhou Yu); I-Han Lui (Jin Chen); James Sedwick (Jon Boley).

XUEFEN L IN WINS 3RD STRAIGHT: Xeufen Lin 1P won her third straight game on Board 1 at the US Open Tuesday, forcing a resignation from Haifeng Liu after an exciting late-game battle as Liu's center dragon used a number of stratagems t o escape or live. The 6-round US Open resumes Thursday after the traditional Day Off Wednesday. Xuefen Lin moved to San Diego, CA three months ago with her husband, a scientist who designs ultrasound machines. Lin studies and teaches go and hopes to star t up a go school in the area later this year. She's been playing go for 20 years, since the age of 12, when she began professional training near Hong Kong, China.

ZHANG WINS PRO-PRO: Wendong Zhang 9P of China beat Hideo Son 4P of Japan in a demons tration Pro-Pro game Tuesday afternoon at the US Go Congress. The game was broadcast to a live Congress audience with commentary by Myung-Wan Kim 7P from Korea, and broadcast simultaneously on KGS.

58 UNDEFEATED IN U.S. OPEN: After three rounds, 5 8 players in the US Open are undefeated and in contention for top prizes. The 6-round event resumes Thursday after the Wednesday Day Off. 3-0 winners: DAN: Lin, Xuefen 1P; Hung, Joey 8d; Kitagawa, Takahiro 8d; Wang, Jeffrey 8 d; Huang, Jim 6d; Brownell, Landon 4d; Burrall, Steven 4d; Kato, Kaoru 4d; Roads, Francis 4d; Shen, Cherry 4d; Fung, Terry 3d; Bustamente, Richard 2d; Ku, Lawrence 2d; LePore. Mike 2d; Levenick, Jim 2d; Lin, William 2d; Newman, William 2d; Price, Guthrie 2d; Downes, Edward 1d; Hutchinson, Craig 1d; Sakamoto, Setsuki 1d; Tubman, Asher 1d; Zhang, Lionel 1d; KYU: Larson, Josh 1k; Armenia, Peter 3k; Fienup, James 3k; Harter, Benjamin 3k; Kurz, Steffan 4k; Peterson, Max 5k; Conyngham, Jim 6k; Lin, Eunice 6k; Smilack, Solomon 6k; Cooper, Brett 7k; Olson, Joel 8k; Allen, Luke 9k; Brown, Frank 9k; Fong, Dennis 9k; Huynh, Lee 9k; Woodcock, Tim 9k; Yan, Jasmine 9k; Waldron, Scott 10k; Simpson, Joel 11k; Adria, Tony 12k; Burg, Chris 12k; Clark, Calvin 12k; Chang, Toby 18k; Kwan, Isabelle 18k; Ning, Jeffrey 20k; Wu, Tiffany 21k; Shi, Julia 24k; Pham, Angela 30k; Enger, Alexander 33k; Laser, Charles; Barber, Scott; Metcalf, Gary; Narins, Lothar; Shang, Peter; Shen, Hao

LEBL LEADS SELF-PAIRED: With perennial favorite Horst Sudhoff apparently sitting out this year's Self-Paired Tournament, the indefatigable Martin Lebl looks tough to beat in at least four of the 11 categories, although even that's a bit down from previous years, w hen he's been competitive in at least half. In fact, despite a record number of Congress participants, Self-Paired action seems to be down this year, with less than 200 games played after nearly three full days (compared with over 100/day usually). Source s theorize that the Midnight Madness Tournament may be taking a toll, or that a more laid-back West Coast approach has folks playing more casual games. There's also a rumor that Sudhoff is laying low with a thick stack of Self-Paired results, luring Lebl into complacency before reporting them at a critical moment. Stay tuned for more updates on this exciting event.
       Self-Paired Leaders: Martin Lebl (Sensei, Dedicated, Philanthropis t, Straight Shooter), Leonard Baum (Champion, Hurricane); Judith Debel (Kyu-Killer); Angela Pham (Grasshopper); William Phillips (Faithful), Robert Felice (Giant Killer).

MIDNIGHT MADDEST: Undefeated after three rounds in the Midnight Madness Tou rnament are: Takahiro Kitagawa, Louis Abronson, Juan Pablo Quizon, Josh Larson, Scott Dossey, Wing Chiu Lai, Solomon Smilack, Tony Adria, Justin Chiang. 42 players participated Monday night.

CHEN, ZHANG WIN REDMOND CUP: Zhaonian Chen won the Senio r Redmond Cup and Lionel Zhang won the Junior Redmond Cup Tuesday, defeating Richard Liang and Calvin Sun.

BY THE NUMBERS: 374 (players in the US Open); 6 (number of Congress games posted on the AGA website at any given time); 200 (number of obse rvers for the Masters Round 2 game broadcast live on the IGS).

HEADS YOU LIVE, TAILS I DIE: "I lost because I made a fundamental strategic error. I created a huge moyo and when my opponent invaded, instead of saying ' Thank You' and confining his stones to a small life on the edge, which would have given me an easy win, I decided to kill the whole group. When I failed to do so and the group escaped, the game was over. My sensei is going to kill me."
- overhear d in the Congress Commons at lunch; reported by Bill Cobb

GAME COMMENTARY: The Knife-Edge Game
       Today's game commentary is from the second round in the 3-round US Masters finals, held on August 7 & 8 at the US Go Congress in Tacoma, WA. Jie Li won the first round on August 6, so Thomas Hsiang needed a win to stay in the tournament, and this knife-edge game goes right down to the wire with a narrow 3-poin t margin of victory.
        To view the attached .sgf file(s), simply save the file(s) to your computer and then open using an .sgf reader such as Many Faces of Go or SmartGo. Read ers who need .sgf readers can get them for most platforms at Jan van der Steen's

DINING WITH THE PROS: The $50,000 Banana
By Solomon Smilack and Aria von Elbe
      The Japanese Pro Dinner Monday night more resembled a typical evening at a Japanese izakaya than a gathering of top professional go players. In fa ct, go didn't even come up in conversation until the evening was well into the several varieties of beer. Instead, the men discussed the two favorite Japanese pastimes, sports and alcohol. Among other things, we discovered that there are over thirty varie ties of Japanese sake available in Seattle and that house poker rules once confused Sasaki sensei, leading to the creation of a banana worth $50,000. You had to be there.
       Maeda se nsei discussed the state of the Kansai Kiin baseball team, which he manages, and for which four of the pros at the Congress play. They're all very proud that their team plays in the Osaka Dome, the home field of the Hanshin Tigers. The Seattle Go Club's Frank Fukuda is an avid mushroom hunter and is preparing for his upcoming mushroom hunt in October, when a special variety of mushrooms appear. Sasaki sensei and Sawada san discussed the pros and cons of marriage, and talked about how their spouses feel a bout their international travel.
       As the bottles of Kirin and Asahi beer emptied, we began to wonder if go would ever come up. The pros grilled us on why Americans do some things differently, "Why does everyone put so much ice in juice?" Sawada san quickly meshed the word ice with the Japanese word sumimasen (I'm sorry) by apologizing with the first humorous quip of the evening, "Aisumimasen" (Sorry for the ice). This spurred a seri es of joke-telling, all in Japanese, of course.
       Go finally made an appearance at 8:15, when the name "Touya Akira" floated across the table and were surprised to hear the pros talking about Hikaru no Go. They were amazed at the series' effects, noting how it has encouraged a return to proper manners among young players. Nakayama sensei regaled us with a classic story about Tetsuya Kiyonari, who turned shodan over 25 years ago, and was keeping time for a profe ssional game when Yutaka Shiraishi came back from lunch five minutes late. Yutaka apologized for being late and then proceeded to chide Kiyonari for not being more strict in discouraging tardiness. That evening, Kiyonari sat by Shiraishi and counted down the dinner break as if it was byo-yomi.

THE E-TEAM: Chris Garlock, Bill Cobb, Aria von Elbe, Solomon Smilack, Ethan Baldridge, Andrew Briscoe, Chuck Robbins, Michael Samuel, Jeff Boscole.

NOTE TO OUR READERS: We're pleased to make the Member's Edition special Congress reports available to our non-member readers this week. We hope you enjoy the reports, updates and games. Please consider supporting our work by joining the AGA; your membershi p will get you the weekly Member's Edition, annual Yearbook & CD, as well as entitle you to participate in local and national tournaments, our rating system and, of course, the annual Go Congress. Find out more at

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

Publis hed by the American Go Association

Text material published in the AMERICAN GO E JOURNAL may be reproduced by any recipient: please credit the AGEJ as the source. PLEASE NOTE that commented game record files MAY NOT BE published, re-distributed, or made available on the web without the explicit written permission of the Editor of the E-Journal. Please direct inquiries to

Articles appearing in the E-Journal represent the opinions of the authors a nd do not necessarily reflect the official views of the American Go Association.

To make name or address corrections, go to Story suggestions, event a nnouncements, Letters to the Editor and other material are welcome, subject to editing for clarity and space, and should be directed to:
Editor: Chris Garlock

American Go Association P.O. Box 397 Old Chelsea Station Ne w York, NY 10113-0397