News from the American Go Association

October 30, 2006
Volume 7, #93

Go in Israel

JONG IL JEONG UPSETS LI IN COTSEN: Jong Il Jeong 8d edged out defending champion Jie Li 9d to win the 2006 Cotsen Open in Los Angeles, CA yesterday. Jeong, who lost to Li in the 3rd round, beat Lu Wang 8d who went on to defeat Li by a single point in the final round. Tournament sponsor Eric Cotsen, who called the record 140-player turnout "awesome," said he was especially pleased to see so many of the players arrive early Sunday morning to watch Yilun Yang 7P play a pro-pro demonstration game online with Chinese pro Chang Hao 9P. This game was broadcast live online on IGS, and all five Board 1 games were simulcast live by the E-Journal on both IGS and KGS, with combined viewerships of well over 400 worldwide. Live online commentary was provided by Thomas Hsiang 7d of Rochester, Cornel Burzo 8d of Romania and Phil Waldron 6d of Canada. Jeong won $1000 for his 1st-place finish; 2nd: Jie Li ($500); 3rd: Da e Hyuk Ko ($250); 4th: Lu Wang ($125); 5th: Soo Ihl Ha ($75); 6th: Rui Wang ($50). Watch the AGA website for a complete winner's report soon; event photos and games are posted there now.

DANIEL CHOU TAKES THE PUMPKIN: Daniel Chou 5d took top honors in Saturday's NoVa Pumpkin Classic in Arlington, VA. A record 52 players, some from as far away as Pittsburg, were on hand for the annual scramble for pumpkins and gourds at NOVA-GMU. "In spite of a computer crash, all four rounds finished relatively on time," reports TD Allan Abramson. "Seven players 5d and above clashed in the top section," says Abramson. "Local sensei Yuan Zhou 7d was upset not just once, but twice, by Daniel Chou and Keith Arnold."
      Winners Report: First place: Daniel Chou 5d, 3-1; Odie Hestnes 1d, 3-1; John Moore 3k, 4-0; Bob Ehrlich 6k, 2-2; John Greiner 7k, 3-0 and Nathan Schmitz 8k, (tied at 3-1); Bob Bacon 9k, 4-0; Kevin Chin 15k, 4-0; Tom Carlson 16k and Hanwei Yin 17k and Yukino Takehara 17k, (all tied at 2-2); Vi Cao 21k, 3-1.
      Second place: Kwo-Ping Ho 6d, 3-1; Tianren Tan 1d, 3-1; Robert Ferguson 1k and Max Peterson 5k, (tied at 3-1); Ching-Sung Chin 6k, 2-2; Craig Nelson 8k, 2-2; Samantha Fede 9k, 2-2; Kabe Chin 10k, 2-2; and Melody Chao 30k, 2-1.
      Special achievement in third place: George Wang, 4d, 3-1. The next NOVA tournament is the Holiday Helper, Saturday, 16 December.

CALVIN LEE TOPS 9TH ING YOUTH TOURNAMENT: Mission San Jose High School's Calvin Lee 5d won last weekend's all-youth ING Youth Tournament sponsored by the ING Goe Foundation in Sunnyvale, California. 124 kids from as far away as Sacramento attended the tournament, directed by Mingjiu Jiang and Reid Augustin.
       Division winners:
       19X19 (70 players): 3d-5d (Open): Calvin Lee; 1d-2d: Justin Shieh; 1k-6k: Eric Su; 7k-12k: Yuhun Yang; 13k-21k: Jason Xie; 22k-25k: Samuel Liu; 26k-29k (A): Daniel Liu; 26k-29k (B): Ian Huang; 26k-29k (C): Tiantong Qin
       13X13: (54 players): A: Ashley Su; B: Curtis Tekell; C: Justin Fang; D: Alex Fang; E: Benson Lin; F: Wesley Yang; G: Wilson Zhang.
- reported by Lawrence Ku, E-Journal West Coast Bureau Correspondent

FENG YUN TO PLAY IN DA LI CUP: Feng Yun 9P will represent the United States in the 1st Da Lia Cup World Women's Professional Go Championship in Da Li city, Yun Nan Province, from Nov 23rd to 30th. "The AGA appreciates the invitation and the opportunity to participate in the competition," said AGA President Michael Lash.

SMARTGO 2.3 DROPS PRICE: The latest version of SmartGo - version 2.3 -- has just been released, and the price has been reduced to $69. New features include Joseki Context to provide a better idea of when to play which variation, professional player names in Japanese and Korean, and the user interface has been translated to German. Download it now at and try it free for 15 days!

TEEN IN CHANG-KI CUP SEMIFINALS: The third Chang-ki Cup, sponsored by the Ing Chang-ki Foundation, is down to four players, one of whom -- Tuo Jiaxi 3P -- is only 15. The other three are Gu Li 9P, Hu Yaoyu 8P and Kong Jie 7P. Initiated in 2005, this tourney has one of the highest prize funds of any Chinese tournament, with a first prize of about $50,000 US. The tournament begins each year on Ing Chang-ki's birthday, October 23rd.

CHO SEOK-BIN ON A ROLL IN EURO TOUR: Unbeaten Cho Seok-Bin 7d of Germany has posted back-to-back wins in the 2006-07 Toyota IGS PandaNet European Go Tour. Cho took top honors among the 91 players in Tampere, Finland, in the sixth event on the Tour, which concludes each year with the Paris Open in April. Andrey Gomenyuk 5d of Russia was second, losing only to Cho. The seventh event was this past weekend in Brussels, Belgium, and Cho Seok-Bin was again undefeated. Taking second this time was Radek Nechanicky 6d of Russia, who also lost only to Cho. There were 111 players in Brussels.

CHO U 1-0 IN OZA DEFENSE: In contrast to his must-win situation, down 2-3 in the defense of his Meijin title (the sixth game is this week), Cho U 9P won the first game in the defense of his Japanese Oza title against Yamashita Keigo 9P. This is Yamashita's third consecutive challenge for this title, which Cho hopes to hold for a fourth straight year. Yamashita is the current Kisei, while Cho holds three of the top seven Japanese titles: Meijin, Oza, and Gosei.

YASHIRO KUMIKO PULLS AHEAD IN WOMEN'S HONINBO: Yashiro Kumiko 5P has moved ahead 2-1 in the defense of her Japanese Women's Honinbo title against Inori Yoko 5P after losing the first game. Inori defeated Kato Keiko 5P to gain the challenger's spot. Inori was Women's Honinbo in 2000 and was also the challenger for this title in 2003. Yashiro took the title from Chinen Kaori 4P last year. The title match is a best-of-five-game contest with the fourth game scheduled for later this week.

KIDS HAVE THEIR CAKE, AND 100 STONES: "The Boulder Kids and Teens club in Colorado just celebrated 100 stones in improvement since implementing our cake and ice cream policy in May," reports local organizer Paul Barchilon. "As promised, we rewarded the kids with a big party. Club organizer Dave Weiss is a 9-dan when it comes to ice cream, and he made Chocolate Coconut Pineapple ice cream special for the event. We also had a big chocolate cake and ate all 40 pieces! Our goal is to reach 500 stones in total club improvement, and we have promised the kids a party every 100 stones. We start kids out when we have some idea of how strong they are, somewhere between 35 and 25 kyu. Kids who come regularly enough to improve by 10 or 20 stones are obviously the biggest contributors to the total, but everybody's progress counts. As if the party wasn't enough of a reward, the kids also got something special from Stu Horowitz. He brought in his old copies of Go World and gave every kid in the room their own issue."
     Some of the club's best performers: Ben Alpert, 12 stones; Vivian Chen, 8 stones; Kahlieh Bernstein, 6 stones, Justin Pappas, 6 stones.

by Todd Blatt 3k
       This summer, I spent about five weeks in Israel studying Judaism at Ohr Someyach Yeshiva, in Jerusalem. I also managed to play a lot of go during my visit. I brought a go set, my Baltimore Go Club hoodie, t-shirt and the phone number of the President of the Israeli Go Association (IGA).
       The very first day, in a orientation session at the yeshiva, another student came up to me and told me he had a go board. He had noticed the go problem on the front of the sweatshirt and was excited to see that someone else played. Yaakov was only about a 20 kyu, but I had many games with him, and by the end of the summer he had improved quite a bit. Every day at 5:30 we would play for about an hour, until dinnertime or our next class. He had a small magnetic travel set which he used to teach other people at the yeshiva before I arrived, including a visiting MIT student.
       In Israel, Hikaru no Go airs on television on the YES! Anime network, which started in February, just when we got HnG on DVD in the US. Shavit Fragman, President of the IGA, told me that one of their clubs got kicked out of Cafe Rimon in Jerusalem because apparently as many as two hundred kids were showing up each week. While I was there this club reopened while I was there at a little restaurant called "from Gaza to Berlin," which was walking distance from where I was staying. When I visited the club, it was the first time at that location, so there were only about 10 players; some of them were Israeli, and others were American or European.
       On Fridays in Tel Aviv, a city on the Mediterranean, I heard that there was a large go club with many young players. It took me just under an hour to get there by shuttle and taxi. The club meets in a mall lobby area and I found players right away. Stronger players came about an hour or so after I got there, so until then I just played the kids. A man named Uri, an Israeli 4 dan, had an interest in the Baltimore go club shirt which I was wearing, and he had on an official shirt from the Nihon-Ki'in, so before I left the club that day, we traded shirts.
       Some of the kids were already close to my strength, and had learned only this past February. Younger Israeli kids tend not to know English well, because they don't learn it in school until they're a little older. I really had to work on my Hebrew to give the teaching games. It was very interesting and challenging to try to get my point across in another language. When I started reviewing the games and replaying them and showing variations, however, everyone was able to understand the language of the stones on the board a little bit better than my Hebrew.
       Blatt, a Senior Mechanical Engineering Major at the University of Maryland , Baltimore County, is President of the UMBC Go Club President. You can reach him at

Locate go clubs worldwide at

GO PLAYERS WANTED: Go players in the Lake Tahoe (NV) area. Contact Fred Hopkins or call 916-548-8068 about forming a club. (10/6)

GO PLAYERS WANTED: Monument, CO: Looking for go players in the Monument, CO area. I know of no one that plays around here. Please contact me at Any strength whatsoever. (10/2)

GO PLAYERS WANTED: SW Portland/Beaverton: Ages 10-18 who would be interested in starting a youth go club. Contact Andrew Peterson at (10/2)

PLAYERS WANTED: Southfield, MI. I have been fascinated by go for years, am anxious to learn more. Looking for players in my area. Am probably a high kyu player, with no rating. Please respond to David at (10/2)

SELL IT, BUY IT OR TRADE IT HERE with over 9,000 go-players worldwide! Classified ads are FREE and run for 4 weeks; email your ad to us now at

Complete & up-to-date events listings online at

November 2-5, 2006: Lancaster, PA
10th Lancaster Yang Workshop
Sam Zimmerman 717.892.1249
Chuck Robbins 717.682.2667

November 5, 2006: Seattle, WA
Ratings Tournament
Jon Boley 206.545.1424

November 5, 2006: Sarasota, FL
Sarasota Self-Paired Fall Tournament
(come anytime between 10am-7pm)
Larry Rabinowitz 941.922.1000
Dan Moise 941.284.6987

November 5, 2006: New York, NY
Ratings Tournament at N Y Go Center
Sponsored by TOYOTA
Hiroto Suzuki 212.223.0342

November 8, 2006: Tempe, AZ
Arizona Rating Tournament
W Gundberg 480.429.0300

November 11, 2006: Tacoma, WA
Tacoma Autumn Tournament
Mike Malveaux 253.906.0095
Gordon Castanza 253.732.0874

November 11-12, 2006: San Francisco, CA
2006 Dote Memorial SF Go Club Fall tournament
November 11-12
Steve Burrall 916.688.2858

November 11, 2006: Anchorage, AK
1st Ak Baduk Tournament
Ms Oh 207.244.2346
Baduk Club 207.868.3302

November 11, 2006: Tempe, AZ
Arizona Rating Tournament
W Gundberg 480.429.0300

November 12, 2006: Catonsville, MD
UMBC Go Club's Semi-Annual Tournament
First tournament at UMBC
Todd Blatt 443.392.6822
John Hager 410.245.2049

November 12, 2006: Ann Arbor, MI
Ann Arbor Fall Go Tournament
Jin Chen 313.643.2888

November 12, 2006: Salem, MA
Peabody Essex Museum: Family Go Workshop
Take an introductory lesson in go and watch and play against players of the Massachusetts Go Association.
Ken Fan

November 15, 2006: Tempe, AZ
Arizona Rating Tournament
W Gundberg 480.429.0300

November 18-19, 2006: College Park, MD
Mid-Atlantic Regional Championship
Steve Mount 301.405.6934
Ken Koester

November 18, 2006: Syracuse, NY
3rd Annual Fall Ratings Tournament
Richard Moseson 315.682.7720

November 18, 2006: Tempe, AZ
Arizona Go Rating Tournament
W Gundberg 480.429.0300

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Assistant Editor: Bill Cobb

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