World Go News from The American Go Association




This week's game commentary is the 6th round of the 17th Ryusei, with Sudo Shun 5P playing Imamura Toshiya 9P on January 10, 2008. The commentary by Rob van Zeijst, who asks "Have you ever implemented a successful sacrifice? Veteran Imamura 9P, with his highly regarded ‘good style', seems to become the victim of new-on-the-block-kid Sudo 5P. However, when the dust settles after the first violent fight, Imamura emerges with an enormous moyo as compensation for his tactical loss. Sudo desperately starts another fight. Now he seems to be sacrificing a group to destroy the center moyo. However, Imamura tops all sacrifices and loses an approach ko on purpose to force a direct ko. In the end, Imamura seems to miss a simple move, or it is Sudo, who misreads as he moves to punish Imamura for his omission? A real spectator's game--you have to see it to experience the excitement first hand." Our bonus files this week include the Round 1 game from yesterday's KGS Suk B Choi Amateur Invitational final between Andy Liu and Shaoyou Ouyang (see story below) and another endgame problem from Yilun Yang 7P. Non-members: join the American Go Association and get all this great content with every EJ! It's all just a
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June 16, 2008; Volume 9, #30

KO GRINDS IT OUT AT SANTA MONICA COFFEE CUP: Dae Hyuk (Danny) Ko 8d took home the top prizes in last weekend's 2nd Annual Santa Monica Coffee Cup. Ko topped an open section of eight players 5d and above to collect a pound of house blend coffee and a hand-painted trophy mug at the June 14 event, which drew 34 players -- nearly double last year's attendance -- to the informal, art-filled UnUrban Coffeehouse in Santa Monica, California. In addition to mugs, coffee and certificates, prizes included a free lesson donated by Yilun Yang 7P, subscriptions to go4go pro game commentaries donated by Alexander Dinerchtein 3P, and copies of the Go World Archive and Kiseido Digital Bookshelf donated by Kiseido Digital. "The atmosphere is relaxed, the coffee is good and I can't think of a better place to get together with a bunch of people who enjoy the game," said organizer Andrew Okun, adding that the Santa Monica Go Club hopes to put on the event every year. In the spectator gallery was Ming Wan Kim 8P, from Korea, who has just moved to Los Angeles. The Coffee Cup was very much a family event, as well, with prizes won by father and son Gary and Jerry Shen, brothers Andrew and Jerry Lu, and father and daughter Andrew and Emily Okun. Full results: Espresso Division (5d-8d), 1st Danny Ko, 2nd Wenhua Tang, 3rd Calvin Sun, 4th Gary Shen. Java Division (1d-3d), 1st Andrew Lu, 2nd Ryan Downing, 3rd Bob Myers, 4th Jon Brown. Mocha Division (1k-6k), 1st Jerry Shen, 2nd Andrew Okun, 3rd Janek Klawe, 4th Alex Chau. Latte Division (8k-15k), 1st Joe Walters, 2nd Terry McIntyre, 3rd Scott Nichols, 4th Dammy Osoba. Cocoa Division (20k+), 1st Jerry Lu, 2nd Nathan LaZotte, 3rd Emily Okun. Photo by Andrew Okun

OUYANG TAKES 1ST ROUND IN KGS FINAL: Nearly 900 watched Shaoyou Ouyang edge out Andy Liu in Round 1 of the KGS Suk B Choi Amateur Invitational finals on Sunday. "The game (attached) had an exciting exchange and it was very close," reports KGS's Akane Negishi. The finals are best-of-three between Ouyang and Liu; Round 2 will be played on this weekend. Click here for complete details and game records.

L.A. CRUSHES BOSTON IN TEAM TOURNEY: The City of Angels defeated Beantown handily in the Boston-Los Angeles Team Tournament played June 7-8 on KGS. In five head-to-head matches, L.A. prevailed over Boston 4-1. The winning Los Angeles team was made up of Dae Hyuk Ko, Wenhua Tang, Yixian Zhou, Kuo-Ruey Han and Calvin Sun, while the Boston team was comprised of Jie Liang, Xin Xu, Yu Zhong, Guobin Luo and Ke Lu. Click here for complete results.
- reported by Ke Lu and Yixian Zhou

ZHOU, SUN LEADING REDMOND CUP: After three exciting rounds, William Zhou and Calvin Sun lead the Redmond Cup. Round four of the tournament for young go players is scheduled for this week. The Cup's Senior Division features two undefeated players: William Zhou, with three wins, and Ricky Zhao, with two wins and an unplayed game. This week's round features a matchup between Ricky and William, who fought for the USYGC Senior Division Championship just a few weeks ago. In the Junior Division, this week's match features Calvin Sun and Andrew Huang, who are both undefeated, with Calvin's three wins and Andrew's two wins and one bye leading the field of youngsters. Click here for the latest standings.
- reported by Lawrence Ku

MORE PROS, PEOPLE AT U.S. GO CONGRESS: Yang Yilun 7P brings the pro line-up at this year's U.S. Go Congress to an even dozen. Total registration for the August 2-9 event in Portland - the biggest go event on the U.S. go calendar - is now 320, reports Congress Director Peter Freedman. "Register now!" urges Freedman. "One of our dorms is now full, and if you have not registered by June 30th, the price moves from our discounted rate of $260 to the full rate of $360." Check out the Congress website FAQ for updated information about the Wednesday trips.

EAST YOUTH CAMP TO VISIT NY GO CLUB: Campers at the East Youth Go Camp will be taking a field trip to the New York Go Center, reports Director Karen Jordan. "Former camper Boris Bernadsky is our contact at the NYGC and is rounding up people on July 25 to play against the campers," Jordan tells the EJ. "We're planning to be there from 5-9P." There's still room for more campers, Jordan says; click here for details and to register. The East Camp staff includes Feng Yun 9P, Rob Muldowney and Richard Liang, a former counselor and new teacher this year.

EISMAN NAMED TEACHER OF THE YEAR: Oakdale, CA, elementary school teacher Vincent Eisman (right in photo below) has been selected as the American Go Foundation's Teacher of the Year for 2008. As the winner of the award he will receive an all-expenses paid trip to the Go Congress in Portland, where he will be honored at the final banquet. Eisman began his school program with homemade boards back in 2005, and it quickly became a part of his regular curriculum. His efforts have not been limited to his own school though, through the forums on he has reached out to teachers across the country to share his passion. "Teaching go has become so much more than I thought it could be," Eisman told the E-Journal, "It is an immediate way to reach kids from kindergarten through high school. I have found that whatever need a child may have, whether for the comfort of friendship, or a gifted mind greatly needing to be challenged, go has much to offer." Recognized as a top teacher locally, Eisman credited go as his favorite teaching tool in an interview with the Modesto Bee newspaper. The week that it appeared in print, five different teachers contacted the AGF to request starter kits or more information. "Receiving this award is an especially great joy for me as it combines two of my greatest passions- teaching and go. I first started teaching children to play go almost by accident and with somewhat selfish motivations. I didn't yet know how to play, but had a great fascination with the game. After a fruitless decades-long effort to learn the game, I wanted some opponents to play. I also sensed that the game had some potential as a fun way to cultivate deeper thinking in students. I was not prepared for the response I would receive from the kids. Virtually every student, regardless of gender or academic level, took to the game with great enthusiasm. I would overhear students who passed around my single copy of Hikaru no Go arguing about character motivation with a passion that was not matched by any discussions of literature we read that year. Over the summer I made a class set of 13x13 boards from plywood and received a grant to purchase stones and sets of Hikaru no Go books. Over the past few years I've received AGF assistance to build up a class set of equipment, a magnetic demo board and tournament prizes as well as the kind assistance of Yellow Mountain Imports. Our school club, FOGO has grown more than I can handle and former students have moved on and started a club at the junior high. Students bring their friends in at recess and lunch and I sometimes have to step over bodies of kids playing on the floor just to get across my classroom."
- Paul Barchilon, EJ Youth Editor

MOST AGA BOARD SEATS TO BE CONTESTED: Three of the four American Go Association Board of Directors seats will be contested this year. Chuck Robbins and Ke Lu are running for the Eastern Region seat, Gordon Castanza and Andrew Okun are running in the West, and Roy Laird, Daniel Short and Jie Li are competing for the At-Large position. Only the Central Region - where Roy Schmidt is the only candidate -- is uncontested. Click here for candidate statements. Elections coordinator Arnold Eudell urges any AGA chapter reps who "have not yet received the preliminary voting rights list through the AGA chapters list" to contact him at

RECALL VOTE SET: The voting process on the effort to recall American Go Association At-Large Board member Roy Laird has been put in place by AGA President Mike Lash. The recall effort - instigated by Ji Li 9d (who confirmed last week he's a candidate for the At-Large seat; see story above) and submitted on June 2 by Xuefen Lin 1P -- is based on Laird's role in the recent controversy over the selection of the U.S. representative to the North American Fujitsu Qualifier ("N.A. FUJITSU SELECTION CHALLENGED" 5/19 EJ). President Lash will send a package of informational material to all current AGA chapters this week and a 2-week voting period will commence next week, after which the AGA Secretary will count the ballots and announce the result.

CORRECTION: PENG, NOT FENG, HAPPY CUP WINNER: The Happy Cup winner was Bruce Peng, not Bruce Feng (BRUCE FENG TOPS HAPPY CUP YOUTH GO TOURNEY (6/2 EJ); our apologies for the error.

GO CALENDAR: Tucson, San Francisco & Baltimore
June 21: Tucson, AZ: Tucson Go Club Congress Tune-up Rating Tournament
Martin Lebl 520.850.9213

June 21: San Francisco, CA: Bay Area Go Players Association Monthly AGA Ratings Tournament
Steve Burrall 916.688.2858

June 21: Baltimore, MD: 7th Annual Johns Hopkins University Go Tournament
Jonathan Yen 650.504.8051

TAKAO UP 3-0 IN HONINBO: Takao Shinji (left) 9P has now taken the first three games of the best-of-seven game defense of his Honinbo title against Hane Naoki 9P. Hane will have to win all four remaining games to take the title. It has happened before, but the odds are certainly against him. This will make it four consecutive years for Takao if he wins. Hane has never won the Honinbo, but he did hold the Kisei title in 2004 and 2005 and the Tengen in 2001 and 2002. Hane also won the fast game NHK Cup in 2006 and the Okan in 2007. Takao held both the Honinbo and the Meijin in 2006 and was only the sixth player ever to do so. He defended his Honinbo title against Yoda Morimoto 9P last year, winning 4-1. The fourth game of the current title match is scheduled for next Monday and Tuesday.

IYAMA YUTA HANGING TOUGH IN MEIJIN LEAGUE: Iyama Yuta (right) 7P may well win the opportunity to challenge Cho U 9P for his Meijin title. After playing six games in the eight-game round robin match, he is the only player who has lost only one game and stands at 5-1. Next best is Yamada Kimio 9P at 4-2. Everyone else has lost at least three games, which leaves them with very slim chances. Iyama is just barely twenty and continues to amass an amazing record. As a teenager he was the youngest pro ever to win a title and he continues to do well in top events. He has made it to the second round of the current Judan, defeating Kono Rin 9P, made it to the third round of the Tengen before losing, is in the second round of the Oza, and won the Shinjin O (new pros) last year. In the League he still has to play Kobayashi Satoru 9P (4-3) and Yoda Norimoto 9P (3-4). The last player in the League whom Iyama beat was Cho Chikun 9P. He has also defeated Takao Shinji 9P and current Honinbo, Yamada Kimio 9P, and Sakai Hideyuki 7P.

LEE CHANGHO BACK IN THE SADDLE: Lee Changho (below left) 9P seemed a bit off his game last year, but in the first six months of 2008 he has been on fire. He has won more games so far this year than any other Korean pro: 29 wins and only 6 loses for a remarkable 83% winning average. He currently holds three Korean titles (Wangwi, Siptan, and the KBS Cup) and one international one (Zhonghuan Cup). In current international events he has made it to the third round of the LG Cup, to the semifinals of the Fujitsu Cup, and the semifinals of the Ing Cup. In national events he is 2-1 in the League to determine the challenger for the Myeongin (Japanese: Meijin), in the second round of the Electron-Land Cup, has qualified for the final tournament for the Prices Information Cup, and made it to the third round of the KBS Cup. Lee Sedol 9P still holds more titles, four international and three national, but the way things are going Lee Changho may soon pass him.

YOUR MOVE: Readers Write
CLASSIFIEDS WORK! "Recently I sent you material about my go set which you promptly published," writes a satisfied EJ Classifieds lister. "I have had multiple responses. Thanks to you the set has been sold." Classifieds are free and run for 4 weeks; send yours to

A STONE LAID IS A STONE PLAYED: "Is it illegal to place a stone on the board and then -- while keeping it between your fingers -- place it elsewhere?" asks a new member and player. It's not technically illegal but it's universally frowned on; most Tournament Directors instruct players to play their stones where they're initially placed and will issue a stern warning to players moving or sliding their moves. Click here for the AGA's official rules.

YOUTH CAMP INFO: "How much does the go summer camp cost?" asks Trevor Douglas. Click here for complete info on both Youth Summer Go Camps, including cost and how to register.

GO QUIZ: Win Some, Lose Some
Most of you correctly counted New Jersey as edging out Washington for most U.S. Go Congress registrants so far. At time of my count, it was 19 to 18. These numbers are, however, dwarfed by California and Japan. Phil Waldron - in what may have been a misclick, because his numbers were right - chose New York. On the other hand, Phil was right last week - Heiser was 4th in 1990, not 1991 as I reported; my 1991 RANKA Yearbook was covering the 1990 event, hence my mistake. Congrats to this week's three winners, Deborah McGlothlin, Andrew Huang and Terri Schurter, chosen at random from those answering correctly, who each receive a copy of the 2008 Ranka. Current Quiz standings: Waldron 13/14, Salamony 13/14, Fawthrop 10/12, Kerr 7/7, Fung 6/7, Schumer 6/7 and Burger 5/5.
PHOTO HELP: While the quiz takes a short vacation break, take a look at this wonderful photo. Sandra Edson, a go-playing kindergarten teacher in California sent us this picture of the New York Go Club (or perhaps the Nippon Club) circa 1957. Can any oldtimers identify anyone? Masuo Horiguchi - whose granddaughter is a parent of one of Ms Edson's students -- is almost certainly third from the right, and I believe that might be Edward Lasker in the back corner. Anyone else? Email us at and you could be next week's prize-winner!
- Keith Arnold, Quizmaster

by Motoko Arai
    Okay, I had planned to continue by writing about our go classes, but before I start that there's another little story that I want to tell you. It's just a quick little episode.
    So, up to this point, both my husband and I had mainly studied go through reading books. Which is to say, we would "see with our eyes" what was written in the book and then we would more or less understand it. However, when we started going to the go classes . . .
    Of course in a class there's a teacher, but there are also students. And for every one teacher there are 10, 20, 30 students. There are always going to be more students than teachers. So it's not always so-called "teaching" but also a lot of overhearing or eavesdropping, right? And then, unlike books where you "see with your eyes", in this case it's a matter of what you "hear with your ears". As a result, sometimes it's possible to hear some remarkably strange things.
    First, "bamboo joint." Of course, this is a fundamental shape that is super strong and can't be cut. For me, this was clear. Somewhere, sometime before we started our class, I had seen this phrase and remembered it. However, for my husband, the first time he was exposed to this phrase was in our go class.
    And, I'm not sure exactly what he did hear, or what exactly happened in his head when he heard it, but . . .
    "Very strong shape, huh?" And thinking this way, he simply mistook what he had heard.
And so, every once in a while when we were playing go together, I'd think, "Huh?" That is, my husband had a habit of talking to himself during games, and when I'd overhear what he said to himself, I'd think, "Huh?"
    "This spot - if it gets cut it'll be bad. Maybe I need a baboon joint. Okay, yup - here I'll play a baboon joint."
    "Huh? So one day I asked my husband, "Um, when you say baboon joint...?"
    "It's strong. Can't be pulled apart. A baboon joint."
    Okay, this was some kind of joke, right? My husband was making some kind of joke, and next he was going to start thumping his chest.
    So I let it slide, thinking it was a joke, but then I heard him say it when he was playing other people. Gradually I realized that for some reason, he really thought it was called a baboon joint.
    "Um, honey, just a minute. I mean, that's a bamboo joint, right? Bamboo, like the Japanese tree!"
    And suddenly my husband looked so confused. He had been certain that "bamboo joint" had been a baboon joint. It made sense somewhere deep in his mind: super strong, can't be beat - that was a baboon. Thus, a baboon joint.
    I wonder if there are any shapes out there that sound like "chimpanzee" or "orangutan."
Motoko Arai is an award-winning science fiction author in Japan.
Translated by Chris Donner from the Nihon Kiin's Go Weekly (March 12, 2008)

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GO PLAYERS WANTED: Tulsa OK, Starting a go club, need members, any level is welcome. If interested contact me at (6/16)

TEACHER WANTED: Seeking teacher (1 dan or above) for 13 kyu student in Lake County, Illinois (Grayslake area). Fee and number of lessons to be negotiated. Please e-mail if interested. (6/9)

GO PLAYERS WANTED: Bluffton SC/Hilton Head SC; Starting a go club, need members, any level of strength is welcome. Need to get members in order to start fundraising for equipment. If interested, please contact me at: (6/9)

GO PLAYERS WANTED: Maine: Looking for go players who would like to start a go club in the State of Maine. I've always been interested in go, and I love teaching beginners. email (6/2)

GO PLAYERS AND/OR CLUBS WANTED: Tampa, Florida, near USF. Email Brandon Berger at (6/2)

GO PLAYERS WANTED: Bluffton, SC: Starting a go club, need members, any level of strength is welcome. This would be one of the only clubs in the state. If interested, please contact (6/2)

Go PLAYERS WANTED: Southern WV around the Athens to Bluefield area. Andrew Lewis; (6/2)

GO PLAYERS WANTED: Alamogordo NM and surrounding area: Looking to find some players for regular games - any skill level! Contact Doug Simpson at (6/2)

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Published by the American Go Association
Managing Editor: Chris Garlock
Assistant Editor: Bill Cobb
Professionals: Yilun Yang 7P; Alexandr Dinerchtein 3P; Fan Hui 2P
Contributors: Paul Barchilon (Youth Editor); Lawrence Ku (U.S. West Coast Reporter); Brian Allen (U.S. West Coast Photo Editor); Peter Dijkema (Dutch/European Correspondent); Marilena Bara (Romania/European Correspondent); Ian Davis (Ireland Correspondent)
Columnists: James Kerwin 1P; Kazunari Furuyama; Rob van Zeijst; Roy Laird; Peter Shotwell
Translations: Chris Donner (Japan); Bob McGuigan (Japan); Matt Luce (China)

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

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