News from the American Go Association

August 15, 2005
Volume 5, #72

In This Issue:
LATEST GO NEWS: Li, Lin Top Congress Tourneys; Cary Wins 1st Chapter League Team; Collecting Greg's Kifus; Congress Snapshots; Young Sun Shines In Korea
WORLD GO NEWS: Kobayashi Satoru Meijin Challenger; 2nd Zhonghuan Cup Underway; Choi Cheolhan Continues His Losing Ways
YOUR MOVE: Readers Write


LI, LIN TOP CONGRESS TOURNEYS: Jie Li 9d won the 2005 US Masters and Ing Invitational while Xuefen Lin 1P won the 2005 US Open last week at the 21st annual US Go Congress. Li and Lin only dropped one game each -- both by very narrow margins -- on their way to winning the championships. In other Congress tourney news, Takahiro Kitagawa 8d nearly pulled off a triple-play by winning both the Die Hard and the Midnight Madness and coming in a close second in the US Open. Leonard Baum and Martin Lebl dominated the Self Paired (see Congress Snapshots below, for details), while Cherry Shen and Joey Hung won the US Pair Go Championship. For the complete final list of Congress Tournament winners, go to http://  Watch this page for more Congress photos and games!

CARY WINS 1ST CHAPTER LEAGUE TEAM: The Cary Go Club of Cary, NC won this year's first AGA National Chapter League Team Championship, reports organizer Bi ll Saltman. Brad Jones captained the team to a 4-0 record, edging out the Deported Ducks of the Blacksburg Go Club, led by Andrew Jackson.
     The complete Winner's Report: AGA National Chapter L eague Team Champion: (greatest # of wins minus losses) CARY GO CLUB, Cary, NC, Brad Jones, Captain, 4-0; 1st runner up: DEPORTED DUCKS, Blacksburg Go Club, Andrew Jackson, Captain, 4-1; 2nd runner up: DRAGON SLAYERS, Evanston, Il, Mark Rubenstein, Capt ain, 2-0; 3rd runner up: TEAM AWESOME, Blacksburg Go Club, Ryan Finley, Captain, 2-1; GOLIATH : highest individual player (wins minus losses), Matt Bengston (6-0) of Penn Go Okatu; DAVID: 2nd highest individual player, Feng Ye of Cary Go Club; THE DEVOTE D: most team matches played (10): Miami Go Club, Kevin Purvis, Capt; THE DEDICATED: 2nd most team matches played (7): Rice Go Team and Tacoma Rainiers; THE HUSTLER: most individual games played, Paul Bensen, Miami Go Club, 10 games; THE RUSTLER: 2nd most individual games played, Kevin Purvis and Joel Sanet of Miami Go Club, and Diana Yen of Rice Go Team, 9 games each; FIGHTING SPIRIT PRIZE: Miami Go Club, Kevin Purvis, Joel Sanet, and Paul Bensen for completing 10 matches in an abbreviated season. Stay tuned for updates on the League's second season.

COLLECTING GREG'S KIFUS: "We're putting together a collection of Greg Lefler's games, to add to the club's library and send home with his mother," report Empty Sky Go Cl ub organizers in Rochester, NY, where Greg Lefler recently died (We Have Lost A Great Heart, 8/10 EJ). "She has found enormous solace in his go-playing memories and materials. Any kifu (written game records) lying around, or .sgfs that may have been tucke d away, and any pictures that may have surfaced, too, would be enormously appreciated." Send them to

CONGRESS SNAPSHOTS: "Horst is sleeping, and I am playing," Martin Lebl told the EJ as Friday night slipped inexorably into Sat urday morning and Lebl blearily threw stones until 3am. The snoozing Sudhoff still won the Kyu Killer (Keith Arnold) title in the Self-Paired, but Lebl ran away with the Sensei, Dedicated, and the Philanthropist titles. Leona rd Baum went him one better, coming away with the Champion, Hurricane, Giant (Dan) Killer and Straight Shooter titles. Angela Pham kept the Grasshopper, Jean Waldron returned to her original rank to win the Faithful, and Paul Jacobs won the Optimist. Eve n though she didn't win any titles, Laura Kolb deserves honorable mention as a serious contender for the Champion, Hurricane, and Straight Shooter. Jasmine Yan also came close in the Champion and the Grasshopper. And despite his lofty claims, Tony "Dark H orse" Adria failed to turn in a single result slip, prompting suggestions that a new "Non-Starter" title be created for this wannabe category.
       The Pacific car was the first across the finish line in the Grand Prix race in the Youth Room, where players raced across the room to solve life and death problems in a frenetic relay. Northern California was close behind, and Washington came in third. Although they finished last in the off icial race, the East Team came back to take first place in the subsequent exhibition match. Meshing exercise with go study, I had to try it myself. Solving dan-level problems under time pressure is tough, doing it while gasping for air is even more chall enging. After so many wrong answers my virtual car had all but stalled, but, Jon Boley consoled me, "You probably gained several ranks just now."
       Congress Director Steve Stringfellow 6d defeated Wendong Zhang 9 P by a score of 5-2. The two players faced off on the final day of the Congress, and Stringfellow was elated with his 3-point victory. No matter that the game was badminton. "Steve had never played badminton," Zhang told the EJ, "but he is very tall." Zha ng also noted: "I've never played left-handed before."
-Solomon Smilack

YOUNG SUN SHINES IN KOREA: Eight-year-old Calvin Sun 3d has just returned from Korea, where he represented the United States in the 5t h Korean Life Insurance Cup Children Baduk Championship. The biggest youth go tournament in South Korea, 290 players 12 or younger competed in the championship on July 29 in Seoul's highest building, the 63-story Life Insurance Building. This year's even t was notable for being the first time that the Korea Baduk Association has invited players from other countries to join. Participating were 13 young players from China, Taipei, Japan, Russia, Romania,Thailand and USA. The rest of the players were Korean kids who were chosen from a staggering 11,000 applicants in nationwide tournaments. "The nine players from China, Taipei and Japan joined 23 of the strongest Korean kids in the 'Best Group' for five games," reports Yanchen Sun, Calvin's father, "each game 20 minutes main time plus 3/20-second byo-yomi." Dang Yi Fei, 12 years old 5d, China, won the championship with five straight wins. "The rest of players from other countries including Calvin, were assigned to the 'Second Bes t Group' with 60 Korean kids in the group championship." This group played three rapid-play games with 15 minutes main time plus 3/20 second byo-yomi; 3-game winners got to continue on. "Unfortunately, all players from countries other than Korea were blo cked out of top 8 by Korean players," reports Sun, adding that "It was a good experience for our young players to participate and learn from Korean go players. Afterwards, Cho Hwun-Hyun 9P, played simul games with 4 foreign kids and 4 Korean kids."


KOBAYASHI SATORU MEIJIN CHALLENGER: Kobayashi Satoru 9p has defeated Yamashita Keigo 9P by 1.5 points in a playoff resulting from their tie scores in the challenger's league for the 30t h Meijin title in Japan. Yamashita won their game in the League. Kobayashi will face the current title holder, Cho U 9P in a best-of-seven match starting in September. Cho holds the edge in previous encounters, 5-3.

2N D ZHONGHUAN CUP UNDERWAY: The 2nd Zhonghuan Cup, an international tournament sponsored by JP Morgan and the Taiwan Go Association, has completed its first round. The initial field of sixteen players contained seven for Taiwan (four of whom are members of the Nihon Kiin), four for Japan, and five for Korea. China declines to participate in this tournament. O Meien 9P, representing Taiwan, defeated Lee Changho 9P of Korea by a single half point, while Choi Cheolhan 9P of Korea beat Cho Chikun 9P of Japan b y resignation. The other players in the second round are Yamashita Keigo 9P of Japan, O Rissei 9P representing Taiwan, Hane Naoki 9P of Japan, Kim Seongryong 9P of Korea, Yoda Norimoto 9P of Japan, and Lee Sedol 9P of Korea. That's three players for Japan , three for Korea, and two representing Taiwan.

CHOI CHEOLHAN CONTINUES HIS LOSING WAYS: After gaining attention by defeating Lee Changho 9P several times, Choi Cheolhan 9P has been having a rough time lately, although his win-loss record for the year so far is 37:21. He took the first game in the international Ing Cup, only to lose to Chang Hao 9P of China by a score of 1-3, and in the Fujitsu Cup he lost in the finals to Lee Sedol 9P. He did manage to take second pl ace in the Korean King of Kings tournament, but then lost the China-Korea Tengen match to Gu Li 7P 1-2. "The problem is that he keeps losing the most important matches," reports macelee on the web site. "It is a difficult task to stay at the top in professional go."

YOUR MOVE: Readers Write

CLUBS JUST A CLICK AWAY: "We live in Palisades Park, NJ," writes Tom. "I'd like to find some players or a club closer with whom my 7-year-old son could play. Can you help?" To find the closest go club in your state, go to and click on your state.

SOLVING THE .SGF MYSTERY: "As a relatively new subscriber and new to the game of go, what are the .sgf file attachments?" wonders Richard. "Is there a special program needed to read them?" .sgf files are game files that are readable by go software programs that make it easy to review the games and which often include helpful comments. To view attached .sgf files, save them to your computer and then open using an .sgf reader such as Many Faces of Go or SmartGo. Readers who need .sgf readers can get them for most platforms at Jan van der Steen's


September 2-4: G ermantown, MD
2nd Maryland Workshop with Feng Yun, 9 dan
Gordon Fraser 301-540-2640

September 10-11: San Francisco, CA
Dote Sensei Memorial Tournament
Steve Burrall sburrall@comcast .net

September 17: Durham, NC
5th Annual Triangle Memorial Marathon Go Tournament
Paul Celmer 919-854-9222 ext. 1120

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