World news

East Coast Go Players Have 3 Tourneys to Choose from this Weekend

AGA news - Wed, 21/10/2015 - 22:55

East Coast go players who can’t make the Cotsen Open in Los Angeles this weekend can still get their dose of go competition by attending tournaments in Arlington, Virginia, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, or Rochester, New York. The NOVA Pumpkin Classic will be held Saturday, October 24 in Arlington, the 11th Annual Greg Lefler Memorial Tournament in Rochester will also be held Saturday and the Philadelphia Fall Open – the first AGA-rated tournament organized by The Penn Go Society in many years — will be held Sunday, October 25th in Philadelphia. Anyone attending two of the tournaments should email photos to us at!

Categories: World news

Cotsen Registration Tops 120; Volunteers Wanted

AGA news - Tue, 20/10/2015 - 00:53

Registration for this weekend’s Cotsen Open has topped 120, organizers report. Coming up October 24-25 at the LA Center Studios in Los Angeles, CA, the popular tournament features a free food truck lunch on both days: Komodo Food on Saturday and Kogi BBQ  on Sunday. The $20 entry fee is refunded if you play in all five rounds. Yilun Yang 7P will play a match against Qun Wang 8P on Sunday morning, followed by an analysis of the game. Kiseido/Yutopian will have a vendor table on the Saturday of the event.

Volunteers are needed to help set up on Friday and record top-board games during the tournament. To help set up (free pizza!), email; if interested in recording/broadcasting for the E-Journal (free EJ caps!); email

photo: top board at the 2014 Cotsen; photo by Chris Garlock

Categories: World news

Obama Played Go in College

AGA news - Tue, 20/10/2015 - 00:43

President Barack Obama learned go in college, reports American Go Association President Andy Okun. In a brief conversation in the meet-and-greet line at a recent fundraiser in California, Okun says he mentioned his position with the AGA and Obama responded, “I learned to play go in college from a guy named Tim” adding that “Tim was a go master.” He asked a nearby aide if the aide had ever played go (he hadn’t), noting that “It’s a very complicated game … non-linear.” As quickly as it started, the discussion ended and staff moved Okun and his son out of the room.

Obama presented then-Chinese President Hu Jintao with an American-made go board and glass bowls (also American-made) during a visit in 2010 (Go Community To Attend White House Event Welcoming Chinese President  1/17/2011). 

photo of go board made by Frank Salantrie by Salantrie

Categories: World news

Amir Fragman 5D sweeps Israeli Go Championship

AGA news - Mon, 19/10/2015 - 22:00

The 19th Israeli Go Championship took place in a quiet residence area in Ramat Gan, Israel. During an extended weekend October 15-17, the 6-round tournament brought strong and young players from all over the country. The calm atmosphere outside was in great contrast to the fierce fights on the board. Amir Fragman 5D (right) defeated defending champion Jonathan Lidor and a veteran champion Leonid Entin with five straight wins to secure the title. Second was Ofer Zivony and third Reem Ben-David. Half the participants were dan level players.

Click here for full results and more photos.

- report by Shavit Fragman

Categories: World news

Chess and Go in Portland and Beyond

AGA news - Mon, 19/10/2015 - 21:36

Last month, a new Chess and Go in the Schools program was launched in Portland, Oregon. Over 100 children signed up in 3 different elementary schools, and 10 more children were placed on a waiting list. All children will learn both chess (from Fritz Balwit) and Go (from Peter Freedman), and then play either, or both games. The program’s first tournament for the year is scheduled for October 24th.

“The program’s continued success has sparked an effort by the AGF, with assistance from the SF Ing Foundation, as well as funds from a private donor, in hopes of spreading interest in chess and go to other schools,” says Freedman. “Start up funds will help organizers get off the ground, but the program is self-supporting, generating revenue to pay teachers, buy club T shirts, run tournaments with trophies, provide snacks, and purchase equipment. Projects in two cities are currently underway, with a possible third in the works.” For more information contact: Peter Freedman at: -Story by Amy Su, Picture by Peter Freedman: Kids learning both games in Portland.

Categories: World news

San Diego Fall Go Soiree Attracts a Crowd

AGA news - Sun, 18/10/2015 - 21:34
The fifth annual Fall Go Soiree at the home of San Diego Go Club president Ted Terpstra drew over 35 go players. Players from the SD Go Club, UCSD Go Club, SDSU Go Club, Carlsbad Coastal Go Club and even the Santa Monica Go Club came together for a day of self-paired games on Saturday, October 10. After five hours of playing go, the crowd took a pizza break (funded by the AGA rewards program) and then continued into the night with more games and analysis.

A new group of UCSD freshmen, including Weihan Huai, a 2P from China, provided challenges for the old-timers. Every flat service in the house was covered by go boards and bowls as more and more players arrived. Players ranged in age for 10 to 70 and in ratings from 30K to 2P with a large contingent of dan players.
- photo by Jenna Jansen

Categories: World news

Your Move/Readers Write: Go Book Found; E-Journal Archives

AGA news - Sun, 18/10/2015 - 21:00

Go Book Found: In response to a recent query, Richard Bozulich writes that “The book this gentleman is most likely saw was The Go Player’s Almanac 2001published by Kiseido.

E-Journal Archives: “Are old ejournal email attachments available in an archival area?” wonders Richard Solberg. “I am interested in looking at some of these in my studies.”
The general EJ archives are in two locations: the 2008-2015 archive is here, while older E-Journals — 2004-2008 — are here. Neither archive includes member’s edition content.


Categories: World news

Sundays are for Football and Go

AGA news - Sat, 17/10/2015 - 23:03

This Sunday, October 18th starts the fourth year of the Pandanet AGA City League. Make sure to follow your local and favorite teams throughout the year. We’ve already had one game early this week and it was exciting to start off the year. For those who have followed in the past we have expanded the leagues and there are now eight teams for the A and B leagues. Also starting this year is video reviews from online commentators like Hajin Lee and Andrew Jackson. The first round will be commented by Xiaocheng-Stephen Hu/xhu98. Worried you’re going to miss football while watching the games? Download the Android and iOS app for Pandanet. Look in the AGA City League and AGA City League (Manual) rooms.
- Steve Colburn, League Coordinator

Categories: World news

Cao-Fenech Three-Peat French Pair Go Champs

AGA news - Sat, 17/10/2015 - 20:00

This year, the French Pair Go Championship took place in Strasbourg on the weekend of the 10th and 11th of October. Fourteen pairs were present. Would the pair of Nyoshi Cao and Antoine Fenech, reigning national champions for the past two years, be able to add to their tally? Many pairs were hoping to claim their title: Monique Berreby and Olivier Clergue, Marie-Claire Chaine and Farid Ben Malek, and Zhao Pei and Baptiste Noir.

After a fierce competition, Cao-Fenech met Pei-Noir in the grand final (right). After a difficult opening, Nyoshi and Antoine headed into a thunderous endgame and ate a big group to clinch as 3-time champions. In second place, there was a tie between Zhao Pei-Baptiste Noir, Laura Lebastard-Jérôme Salignon and Charlotte Vielfaure-Thomas Debarre.

This year, Dominique Cornuejols and Denis Karadaban will represent France at the International Amateur Pair Go Championship.

- Ian Davis, based on the original article in the Revue Française de Go by Simon Billouet

Categories: World news

Go Spotting: “When the Last Sword is Drawn”

AGA news - Wed, 14/10/2015 - 16:00

In this rather sad elegiac 2002 film — directed by Yojiro Takita — about the end of the Samurai age, at 46:03 minutes we see a goban (floor board) with two bowls of stones on top of the board, in the background of the scene. At 48:51 we see the local lord playing go on a floor board.
- Duncan Brown

Categories: World news

The Power Report (2): Fujisawa Rina makes good start in title defense; Women’s Meijin League; Iyama wins Agon Kiriyama title

AGA news - Tue, 13/10/2015 - 22:00

by John Power, Japan correspondent for the E-Journal

Fujisawa Rina makes good start in title defense: The first game of the 34th Women’s Honinbo title match was held at the Kashoen inn in Hanamaki City, Iwate Prefecture on October 8. It matches the 17-year-old titleholder Fujisawa Rina (right) against Xie Yimin, who held this title for six years in a row. This is the first title match between the two, and it gives us some insight into what the next five years will look like. If Xie can win, the age of Xie, who now holds two titles, may continue. If Fujisawa wins, she may displace Xie from the top position. At the party on the eve of the game, Fujisawa commented that playing a match with Xie had been one of her goals. Perhaps she didn’t expect to play her first match with her as the defending champion. Xie, who will be 26 on November 16, commented that this was her first match with a younger player. Taking white, Fujisawa beat Xie by 2.5 points after 290 moves. The game was decided by a ko fight in the endgame. The second game will be played on October 18.

Women’s Meijin League: In a game played on October 8, Suzuki Ayumi 6P (W) beat Chinen Kaori 4P by resig. As the previous challenger, Suzuki is the number one-ranked player in the league, but this is her first win after two losses. Chinen has already suffered four losses, so she is teetering on the edge of demotion. Joint leaders are Fujisawa Rina and Aoki Kikuyo 8P on 2-0.

Promotion: To 2-dan: Shibano Toramaru (aged 16) (30 wins; promoted as of Oct. 9)

Iyama wins Agon Kiriyama title: The final of the 22nd Agon Kiriyama Cup was held at the Kyoto headquarters of the Agon sect in Kyoto on October 10. Iyama Yuta (left), playing black, beat Kyo Kagen 3P by resig. after 187 moves. This is the fourth time Iyama has won this title, which matches Cho U’s record. The play-off between the Japanese and Chinese titleholders will be held in China on December 25.

Categories: World news

Cotsen Update: 90 registered; Volunteers needed (free pizza & caps!)

AGA news - Tue, 13/10/2015 - 13:00

Over 90 players have already pre-registered for this year’s Cotsen Open, coming up October 24-25 at the LA Center Studios in Los Angeles, CA. The popular tournament features a free food truck lunch on both days: Komodo Food on Saturday and Kogi BBQ  on Sunday. The $20 entry fee is refunded if you play in all five rounds.

Volunteers are wanted to help set up on Friday and record top-board games during the tournament. “Free pizza for helping set up the tournament space on Friday, October 23,” promises Tournament Organizer Samantha Davis. Email her at

If interested in recording/broadcasting for the E-Journal (free EJ caps!); email


Categories: World news

Seattle Go Center 2oth Anniversary Tournament Draws Big Crowd

AGA news - Tue, 13/10/2015 - 02:32

The Seattle Go Center  held a large tournament to celebrate their 20th anniversary on Saturday, Oct. 3. It was the largest fall tournament they have had in many years, with 48 players participating. The well organized TD’s, Bill Chiles and Dan Top, kept the event on schedule despite the large crowd. The players were smoothly distributed in terms of strength, so that most of the handicapped games used small handicaps. (88% of the handicapped games used two stones or less.)  The next day, Kuma Sensei 6P from the Nihon Ki-in gave a lecture reviewing tournament games.

The Open Section had 8 players and was won by longtime Northwest champion Edward Kim 7d. Edward bested Chanseok Oh, Jeremiah Donley, and Peter Nelson in his three games. Peter Nelson placed 2nd in the Open Section.

Chris Kirschner won all his games in the Dan Handicapped Section, winning that section. Chris is one of the founders of the Go Center, and one of its most active volunteers. Ben Hakala placed 2nd. Jung Doo Nam won the Single Digit Kyu Player Handicapped Section, with David Snow placing second. Mark Richardson won the Double Digit Kyu Player Handicapped Section, with Lucy Wang placing second.

Photo Captions: (Top)  Andy Okun, President of the AGA, playing Harry van der Krogt of the European Go Cultural Center in a friendly game in the tatami room of the Seattle Go Center. (Bottom) First round of the tournament.  Photos and report by Brian Allen.

Categories: World news

The Power Report (1): Iyama defends Meijin title; Kisei knockout tournament begins; Honinbo League starts; Korea wins 2nd O-kage Cup

AGA news - Tue, 13/10/2015 - 02:28

by John Power, Japan correspondent for the E-Journal

Iyama defends Meijin title: The fourth game of the 40th Meijin title match was held at the Kashikojima Hojoen, a traditional inn in Shima City in Mie Prefecture, on October 5 and 6. Playing black, Iyama Yuta (right) forced a resignation after 227 moves and so defended his Meijin title with four straight wins. This is his third Meijin title in a row and his fifth overall. The game started with Iyama playing a little too aggressively. Takao (left) swallowed up an important black stone, but Iyama kept fighting relentlessly, so he didn’t get a chance to take the lead. The game developed into an enormous fight, but Takao missed his best chance to attack. Iyama increased the pressure in a fight among a number of eyeless groups and eventually came out on top. Takao was unable to improve on his score in his challenge to Iyama for the 35th Meijin title. At the moment, Iyama seems unstoppable. He has defended all the titles in his quadruple crown and next will be aiming at restoring his sextuple crown, with Oza and Tengen challenges starting soon. He has improved his chances in these matches by finishing off the Meijin match early. The above win was his 15th in a row, which is a new personal record.

Kisei knockout tournament begins: The first game in the irregular knockout tournament to decide the Kisei challenger was played on October 1. B League-winner Yamada Kimio 9P (B) beat Kyo Kagen 3P, winner of the C League, by resig.

Honinbo League starts: The 71st Honinbo League got off to a start on October 1 with a game between two heavyweights, Yamashita Keigo 9P and Kono Rin 9P. Playing black, Yamashita won by resig. He has made a good start in his bid to repeat as challenger.

Korea wins 2nd O-kage Cup: The O-kage (gratitude) Cup is an international tournament for players 30 or under sponsored by Hamada Sogyo and the tourist shops in Okage-Yokocho (Gratitude Alley) in the city of Ise. This year the scale was expanded from three-player to five-player teams from Japan, Korea, China, and Chinese Taipei. The extra two places went to women players. Korea showed overwhelming strength. In the first section, an all-play-all league, it lost only two games out of 15, beating Japan 4-1, Chinese Taipei 5-0, and China 4-1. The other three teams tied for second place, each with one win and two losses, but Japan took second place, thanks to having scored seven individual wins to China’s six. On the top board, Ida Atsushi 8P won all his games.  Chinese Taipei took fourth place, but it will be satisfied with a rare victory over the Chinese team (3-2). In the final, Korea was awesome, beating Japan 5-0. In the play-off for 3rd place, China took revenge on Chinese Taipei, not dropping a game. There were five prizes for top individual performances; these were all won by Koreans. In an interview, the Korean coach Yang Keon 9P commented: ‘I think we did too well. But I did feel that our activity since setting up a national team has borne fruit little by little.’ He said that the members of the national team study from 10 to 5 every day, playing games and studying the opening. As a result, he said, he felt that they were beginning to catch up with China. Concerning the Japanese team, he commented: ‘Their level is extremely high. I think that one factor in our getting this kind of result is there’s a gap in research into the opening.’ In Korea, a lot of time is devoted to studying the opening; rivals will study together and try to work out definitive openings. The accumulation [of knowledge] makes a big difference. ‘We believe that, with the deluge of information (game records), selecting the best patterns and doing research at a more advanced level is important.’ photo: Okage with the sponsors

Tomorrow: Fujisawa Rina makes good start in title defense; Women’s Meijin League; Iyama wins Agon Kiriyama title

Categories: World news

The 2nd Xian Tournament

European Go Federation - Thu, 08/10/2015 - 13:34
The 2nd Qinling Mountains Cup Silk Road International City Weiqi Tournament will start tomorrow! The tournament is held in Xi'an, China from October 9th till October 11th 2015. Today, 20 representatives from Europe, our president Martin Stiassny and 19 players have attended the opening ceremony of the 2nd edition of this tournament. Together,players from 21 cities from 13 countries will participate in this team competition.
Categories: World news

Three US Players to Compete at 17th Ibero-American Tournament in Havana

AGA news - Thu, 08/10/2015 - 03:19

Three U.S. players will participate in the 17th Ibero-American Championship Tournament October 9-11 in Cuba, where leading Latin American players will compete to determine a champion. Last year in Quito, Ecuador there were 47 players of all levels from eleven countries. Besides Latin America, players also came from  Korea, the United Kingdom and the U.S. “Havana is a city rich in history all the way from the 16th century to modern times,” says attendee Bob Gilman, who’s organized several US-Cuba exchanges. “I am eagerly looking forward to playing and extending my relationships with Latin American players.” There is information about the tournament here, and Gilman says people wanting to learn more are welcome to write him at
photo: Cuban Go Federation Rafael Torres Miranda (left) and Cuban go organizer Lazaro Bueno Perez at the 2015 US Go Congress; photo by Phil Straus

Categories: World news

Latest AGA Tournament Regs Posted; How to Run a Tourney

AGA news - Thu, 08/10/2015 - 03:00

The latest edition of the American Go Association Tournament Regulations have been posted on the AGA’s Tournament Resources page, where you’ll find everything local organizers need to run a tournament. “The essence of go is competition, and tournament play takes that rivalry to its highest level,” says the AGA. “Running a tournament will strengthen your club. You will get to know new players from your area, and you may even build your club’s treasury!”

Organizing a tournament is probably easier than you think, especially if you can put some of local club members to work. Size doesn’t matter. A “tournament” can be held with as few as two players, and there are several interesting formats for as few as four players. Tournament game results can be submitted for AGA rating, a major attraction many tournament players.

Categories: World news

French Championship 2015 + Lyon tournament

European Go Federation - Wed, 07/10/2015 - 13:59
The final stage of the French Championship awards the honor of the best French player in 2015, as well as the qualification of the World Amateur Championship the next year. It therefore gathered many of the strongest French players to Lyon.
Categories: World news

Cotsen Open Deadline Approaching

AGA news - Wed, 07/10/2015 - 00:04
With the October 20 deadline approaching, over 65 players have already pre-registered for this year’s Cotsen Open, October 24-25 at the LA Center Studios (note new location). In addition to one of the largest and strongest fields on the West Coast, the tournament features free food truck lunch on both days, a full refund of the $20 entry fee if you play in all five rounds and the hallmark of the Cotsen, free massages for all players. Davis adds. Yilun Yang 7P will play a match against Qun Wang 8P on Sunday morning, followed by an analysis of the game. Kiseido/Yutopian will have a vendor table on the Saturday of the event.

As an added bonus, “We will be printing new ‘Cotsen Open’ branded products, including never before seen playmat travel go boards with original art,” reports Tournament Organizer Samantha Davis. 

photo: Yilun Yang 7P plays pro-pro game at the 2014 Cotsen Open; photo by Chris Garlock

Categories: World news

Tom Chen Sweeps First Australian Digital Championship

AGA news - Tue, 06/10/2015 - 23:53

With five straights victories, Tom Chen 5D of Sydney swept the 2015 Australian Digital Championship. Open to players from Australia and New Zealand, the tournament was the first from either country held on the internet (KGS and OGS), and took place during the month of September. The reserve champion in second place was Ken Xie of New Zealand 5D with four victories, beating out third place Xin Lei 3D of UNSW by half a point of SOS. Kudos to the pack of players on four victories, including also Steven Yang of Sydney and Graeme Parmenter of Otago, and thanks to the other 18 survivors who competed through to the end of the tournament. Click here for final results, including SGF game records.

In the second division (handicap stronger than 4k) there was again one player with five victories, the Australian Digital Handicap Champion, Stephen Yang 4D. Second place was Rhys Davies 1D with four victories (except where he went up against Stephen Yang). In this division the peleton starts with Johnny Jiang 1D of Adelaide at third place on three victories, and Yanis Newman-Pache 3D of Southern Cross University Go Club, Harvey Wang 2D of Victoria Go Club, and Graeme Parmenter 4D of Otago University Go Club. Thanks also to the other half-dozen survivors for participating.

In the third division (beginners’ handicap) the winner was Zhenyu Liu 10k (!) of Melbourne University Go Club. Second place was Justin Luafutu 16K from Brisbane Go Club on four victories (crushed by the winner in the third round) and third place was Pan Zhao 8K from Melbourne (also on four victories, also went up against the winner). Thanks to the eleven other competitors who also played through to the end.

Tom Chen wins a free admission to the 2016 Australian Go Congress in January 2016, which handily enough is in his hometown of Sydney. Stephen Yang and Zhenyu Liu win free admission to the 2015 Australian Championships in December 2015 in Brisbane.
- Horatio Davis, Australian correspondent for the E-Journal 

Categories: World news
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