News from the American Go Association

February 19, 2007
Volume 8, #14

2nd USYGC Event Set for Irvine, CA
YOUTH GO 2: Irvine USYGC Profiles
YOUR MOVE: Confusing Confucius; A Sign For Go; Looking For LA Events

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YU TOPS ROCKY MOUNTAIN WINTER TOURNEY: Erwin Yu - who has won his last 8 tournament games and defeated most of the top Colorado players in the process --topped last weekend's Rocky Mountain Winter Go Tournament A Division, reports Tournament Director Dave Weiss. "Forty-nine people participated," Weiss adds. "Held on February 17 in Boulder, Colorado, players ranged from 8 dan to 22 kyu, and included 17 youth players."
      WINNER'S REPORT: A Division: 1st: Erwin Yu; 2nd: Renjie Xu. B Division: 1st: Mayeul d'Avezac; 2nd: Larry LeJeune (who was rated as a 6k but competed as a 2k). C Division: 1st: Paul Perry; 2nd: youth player Yaphet Tewahade. D Division: 1st: Marshall Carpenter; 2nd: 9-year-old Nathan Harwit (both are youth players; Harwit has only been playing for four months, and competed as a 17 kyu).

CHANG WINS CREAM CITY CLASSIC: Chien-Wei Chang 5d took first place in the February 17 Cream City Classic in Milwaukee, WI. "The very first go tournament in Milwaukee was a great success," reports TD Richard Hayes. "We had 24 players from three states participate. The meeting room in the Milwaukee County War Memorial gave everyone a spectacular view of Lake Michigan. Special mention should go to Ramon Mercado 9k and Anthony Postert 10k who drove 400 miles from Iowa to compete."
       WINNER'S REPORT: 1st: CHANG, Chien-Wei 5d; 2nd: KUPON, Austin 3d; 3rd: HERO, Max 2d; 4th: ALLEN, Jason, 1k; 5th: HAN, Changyu 2d; 6th: SMITH, Daniel 4k; 7th: ROHDE, David 5k; 8th: LIOTARD, Herve 8k.
       REPORT TOURNEYS ONLINE! Quickly and easily report your tournament results for publication in the E-Journal! Just click on

GO CAMP APPS ONLINE: Kids who want to get strong fast will want to sign up for this year's Youth Go Camps. The East Coast camp is in Oakland County, Michigan from July 1-7; the West Coast camp is in Tacoma, Washington from July 14-21. Applications for both go camps are now online at , along with a link to a slide show about last year's camp. Scholarships are available from the American Go Foundation; finalists in the USYGC will also win scholarships.

RUI NAIWEI AND CHO HYEYEON IN FINALS FOR WOMEN'S KUKSU: Rui Naiwei 9P and Cho Hyeyeon 7P are paired in the finals of the Women's Kuksu in Korea. Rui currently holds all three Korean women's titles: the Kuksu, the Myeongin, and the Kisung . She took the Kuksu from Cho last year. These two have met in the finals of this tournament four times, with Rui coming out on top in three of the matches. Rui has won the title four times to Cho's two.

YAMASHITA KEIGO TO CHALLENGE FOR JUDAN: Yamashita Keigo 9P defeated Yoda Norimoto 9P to win the right to challenge Cho Chikun 9P for his Judan title. Yamashita actually defeated Yoda twice in this tournament, first in the second round, which put Yoda into the losers' bracket. Yoda managed to win that bracket, defeating Cho U 9P in the final match, for a second chance against Yamashita. This time Yoda lost by 6.5 points. The Judan is Cho's only title. Cho is defending for the second time, after winning it in 2005. Yamashita, who is the current Kisei, was the challenger against Cho last year, also, when Cho won 3-1. Yamashita is getting off to a good start this year, having won seven of his eight games in 2007, including winning the first three games in his current defense of his Kisei title against Kobayashi Satoru 9P.

CHINA AND TAIWAN MEET IN LG CUP FINALS: The finals of the international LG Cup will pit Zhou Junxun 9P of Taiwan against Hu Yaoyu 8P of China. Zhou, who is in his twenties, has done well in Taiwanese tournaments, but his best previous performance on the international level was taking fourth place in the Fujitsu Cup in 2001. Hu, also in his twenties, has had more success in international competition, making the semifinals in the 7th and the 8th Samsung Cups and defeating four players in a row in the 4th Nong Shim team event. Zhou and Hu defeated two Korean players, Hong Minpyo 5P and Jo HanSeung 9P respectively to reach the LG Cup finals. Chinese and Japanese players have won this title twice, against six victories by Koreans. None of the major international events has ever been won by a Taiwanese player who was playing as a member of the Taiwanese pro organization-- Taiwanese Cho U 9P and O Rissei 9P have done so as members of the Japanese Nihon Kiin.

LIAPENG ZHANG TOPS CHESHIRE: Lianpeng Zhang, a 3 dan visiting from China, took top honors in the 10th Cheshire Tournament in Britain. Zhang was the only undefeated player in the open section, in which David Ward 4d of Cambridge was second, followed by Tony Atkins 2d of Brackness and Norbert Bittner 1d of Manchester who tied for third. Robin Hobbes 3k of Manchester was the only undefeated player in the handicap section. There were 27 participants altogether despite the wintry weather.

2007 GO CONGRESS UPDATES: Three hundred are already registered for this year's European Go Congress, scheduled for July 14-29 in Villach, Austria. The 51st annual event features tournament play -- including the European Go Championship, the European Masters Tournament, a weekend tournament and side tournaments -- as well as other go events, including workshops with top professionals, all set in Villach and Carinthia's beautiful countryside. Full details at  Meanwhile, back in the US, local organizers are finalizing plans for this year's US Go Congress, July 28-August 5 in Millersville, PA. Stay tuned for updates soon, or click on  The E-Journal will be providing full coverage of both events.

LESSONS FOR SORE LOSERS: "The Chessboard Cherry Tree" tells the story of Oda Sayemon, a hotheaded feudal lord in old Japan who was noted for his bravery as a soldier, for his abominable play at go, and for his bad temper and violence when he lost. "His most intimate friends among his retainers had tried hard to reform his manners after losing at go; but it was hopeless. All those who won from him he struck in the face with a heavy iron fan, such as was carried by warriors in those days; and he would just as readily have drawn his sword and cut his best friend's head off as be interfered with on those occasions. To be invited to play go with their lord was what all his bold samurai dreaded most. At last it was agreed among them that sooner than suffer the gross indignity of being struck by him when they won they would let him win. After all, it did not much matter, there being no money on the game. Thus Sayemon's game grew worse and worse, for he never learned anything; yet in his conceit he thought he was better than everybody." Find out how a faithful old servant teaches Sayemon a lesson, on and off the go board: click for Richard Gordon Smith's translation from "The Chessboard Cherry Tree from Ancient Tales and Folk-lore of Japan." Our thanks to Penn Go club member Barry Pascicznyk for finding and passing this along.

YOUTH GO 1: 2nd USYGC Event Set for Irvine, CA
by Paul Barchilon, AGA Youth Editor
       This weekend's Irvine, CA edition of the new US Youth Go Championship (USYGC) will feature some of the strongest kids in the US. Junior division prodigy Calvin Sun, a 6 dan at the tender age of 10, is favored for the top slot. In the senior division Matthew Burrall 6d, recently back from studying go in Korea, will be hard to beat. Fifteen-year-old EJ West Coast correspondent Lawrence Ku 6d will not be competing at this event due to a scheduling conflict; no doubt Matthew is breathing a sigh of relief! See below for Lawrence's profiles of the top three contenders in the Irvine event. Even with such a strong playing field, kids of all ranks are welcome to come and be a part of the first ever youth qualifier. Organizer Kevin Chao is still accepting registrations at Watch for a brief tournament report in next week's EJ, and the following week we'll feature a full story including a game record from the top board.
       In other youth news, USYGC coordinator Nicole Casanta reports that the 8th qualifier has been confirmed for Hawaii. The Oahu Go club signed up 40 new youth members for the qualifiers, so competition will be stiff. The event will be held on March 16th and 17th, at Hongwanji Mission School in Honolulu. Hats off to organizer Frank Alejandro for his work to secure the 8th qualifier. AGA President Mike Lash announced on Friday that the USYGC finals will be held in Seattle. Organizer Gordon Castanza has set the dates for Memorial Day Weekend (May 26th and 27th), at the Seattle Go Center. The winners of this event will go on to compete at the World Youth Go Championships, which will be held August 6th-12th in Boston, MA.
       With three qualifiers coming up in March alone, the USYGC is kicking into high gear. Young players who want to compete should pick a regional event from the website at <HTTP: USYGC.htm usa>.

YOUTH GO 2: Irvine USYGC Profiles
by Lawrence Ku, EJ West Coast Correspondent
     Here are a few of the top contenders in next week's US Youth Go Championship in Irvine, CA
     MATTHEW BURRALL is a high school sophomore who has been playing go for ten years. He won third place in the 6 dan division of the 2005 Go Congress, and he also played in the ING tournament this year. His dad taught Matthew and his two older sisters how to play go when he was five years old. Matthew, who lives in the Sacramento area, takes lessons once or twice a month from Yilun Yang, and like Mr. Yang, he loves go problems. Last fall, he went to Korea for three months to improve his go skills and took second place in the Jujo Cup Open division shortly after the new year. Besides playing go, Matthew likes athletic sports such as tennis and running.
     CALVIN SUN is a ten year old 6 dan who lives in southern California. He is the 2006 Redmond Cup Junior Division champion, and he has also represented the US in the World Youth Go Championships in the junior division in 2005 and 2006. Calvin won 1st place in the 2006 Cotsen Tournament 5 dan division. He started playing go when he was six years old when his parents saw a go advertisement and decided to let him learn the game. At first, he started learning from Mr. Wang, an amateur 5 dan living in southern California. He now learns go from Mingjiu Jiang. Calvin likes doing life and death problems.
     CHERRY SHEN is a high school freshman who lives in southern California; at 5 dan, she is one of the strongest amateur female players in the US. In 2005, she and Joey Hung (8 dan) represented the US in the World Pair Go Tournament in Japan. In the 2006 Cotsen Tournament 5 dan division, she won 2nd place.

YOUR MOVE: Readers Write

CONFUSING CONFUCIUS: "In the article in the Economist cited by Anton Nino (, it says that "Confucius considered it (Go) a waste of time", but is this correct?" asks Milt Bradley "I recall citations in AGA publications many years ago in which Confucius was quoted as saying almost exactly the opposite - that (paraphrasing) 'even playing go was better than merely wasting time.' It certainly would be of interest to know which of these quite different Confucian views was the truth."
     The passage in the Confucian Analects is referenced in The Go Player's Almanac: "Are there not gamesters and go players? To be one of these would still be better than doing nothing at all." - Bill Cobb

A SIGN FOR GO: "I am an American Sign Language student who would like to know what the Japanese Sign Language (JSL) sign for go is, since there is no set sign I know of for the game here in the United States," writes Valerie Smith. "The sign can be in either JSL or MSL (Manual Sign Language in Japanese)."
     According to Daniel Short, a deaf member of the Empty Sky and Baltimore go clubs, he and a friend use the motion of placing a stone as a logical sign for the game during conversation.
- Keith Arnold (If you have other information on this, e-mail Smith at and copy us in a so we can pass it along!)

LOOKING FOR LA EVENTS: "I'm an amateur 2-dan player and has been an E-Journal subscriber for a couple of months," writes Bryan Xu. "I live in Los Angeles, California and I have been expecting some go events in LA area. But after I read 5 issues of the E-journal I started wondering why there is no events going on in LA area, especially when such a huge Asian population lives here."
     In addition to the annual Cotsen Open, there are often events in the greater LA area; keep an eye on both the EJ and the events page on the AGA website at


February 24-25: Los Angeles, CA
United States Youth Go Championship
Southern California Region
Kevin Chao 949.466.1479

February 25: Montreal, QC
Tournoi d'Hiver de Go
Alex Weldon 514.488.2350
Steven Mays

March 4: New York, NY
New York Go Center Monthly Rating Tournament
TD: Chuck Robbins 212.223.0342

March 17-18: Seattle, WA
USYGC Regional Tournament
This is one of three in the Western Region
Gordon Castanza 253.853.4831
Jon Boley 206.545.1424

March 17: Tempe, AZ
Arizona Go rating tournament
1 pm at ASU
Bill Gundberg 480.429.0300

March 18: Catonsville, MD
UMBC Spring Thing
Start your Spring Break off right!
Todd Blatt 443.392.6822

March 18: New York, NY
Master Player Lecture Seres at The New York Go Center
US Champion Andy Liu
Roy Laird 212.223.0342

Locate go clubs worldwide at

PLAYING PARTNERS WANTED: Mercer County, New Jersey: Would like to play go on weekdays during the day. Perhaps there is a retired player or a student who is available. I am a beginner. Please email (2/12)
PLAYERS WANTED: Stafford, VA: We play go every Thursday evening at the public library, 2001 Parkway Blvd., Stafford, Va. Also, once a month (First Wednesday evening of each month) at the Salem Church branch of the library, 2607 Salem Church Rd., Frederickburg, Va. All are welcome. Contact (2/12)
PLAYERS WANTED: Providence, Rhode Island: I am a relatively new player to the game. Contact (2/12)

PLAYERS WANTED: Roanoke, VA: Starting club in Roanoke VA and looking for players in my area. Please contact or call 540-297-1344 (1/29)

FOR SALE: 7 go books, all in excellent condition, $122.25 retail, just $80 for all (I pay shipping UPS ground). Contemporary Go Terms, Mastering the Basics, Making Good Shape and more. Email for full list. (1/29)

PLAYERS WANTED: Pikeville, NC: Go players wanted in the area of Pikeville/Goldsboro, NC if you are interested email (1/22)

PLAYERS WANTED: Metro DC: I am a new but enthusiatic player and am looking for people of any level inside the District of Columbia to play with. (1/22)

HS PLAYERS WANTED: Arizona: High School players in Arizona looking for other high school clubs to play against. Can also aid in forming a club, if you are thinking about it. Email (1/22)

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Published by the American Go Association
Managing Editor: Chris Garlock
Assistant Editor: Bill Cobb

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

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