The 35th World Amateur Go Championships will be held July 4-11 in Gyeongju, Korea. The American Go E-Journal will once again be teaming up with Ranka to provide comprehensive daily coverage of this major amateur tournament featuring top players from 74 countries and territories around the world.
The WAGC is organized by the International Go Federation; this year the preparatory work is being done at the Korea Baduk Association in Seoul, Korea. The tournament venue will be the Hyundai Hotel in the Bomun Lake resort area of Gyeongju, a former capital of Korea once famed for its architectural and other riches. Now it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a major tourist destination, participants will find much to see, both on and off the go board.
Beginning next week, the E-Journal will run a series of profiles of WAGC players to familiarize readers with the competitors.
Kiseido is having a sale of all English-language go books and magazines listed on its book page. Get 10% off the listed price with free shipping when you order five books or more; the sale runs through July 25. Dozens of books are available, including the Graded Go Problems for Beginners series, the Get Strong at Go Series and more. You can also check out Kiseido’s Go World Online website, which presents recent games played by some of the top players in the world. There you’ll find detailed commentaries on the first five games of the ongoing ten-game match between Lee Sedol and Gu Li, who are billed as the two strongest players in the world. Also featured on this site – which is currently free of charge — is Iyama Yuta’s defense of his Kisei title against Yamashita Keigo.
Candidates for the AGA Board of Directors have now been finalized. Incumbent Gurujeet Khalsa is running unopposed in the Eastern region, as is Robert Gilman (also an incumbent) in the Central region. Ted Terpstra and Jingwei ‘Jay’ Zheng are running for the seat in the Western region for the seat currently held by Steve Burrall, while in the At-Large, Diego F. Pierrottet is running against Edward (Zhiyuan) Zhang. Candidate statements, if submitted, are available on the AGA Elections page. Ballots will be sent out in early July and winners announced August 10.
“I spotted what I think is an error in the Wired article (Wired Magazine on “The Mystery of Go, the Ancient Game That Computers Still Can’t Win” 5/13 EJ),” writes Vernon Leighton. “It said that Michael Redmond was the first American go professional and that James Kerwin was the second. I believe that Kerwin was the first.” Which is correct? Click here to submit your answer.
Help demo/teach at the Smithsonian Folk Festival on the National Mall in Washington DC. Available dates: 6/28 (Sat), 6/29 (Sun), 7/5 (Sat), and 7/6 (Sun). Outdoor venue with expected daily traffic flow of 200+ people. 11 AM to 5 PM. Volunteers pick their dates/times. All necessary equipment and handout material will be provided, including complimentary meal tickets. Contact: John Goon, firstname.lastname@example.org.
June 21: Sacramento, CA
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Ming Curran 3D topped a field of 17 players ranging from 4d to 20k at the Berkeley Go Club’s ratings tournament on June 14. The event was hosted in the Games of Berkeley game store’s downstairs playing rooms, with store gift certificates given as prizes.
Organizers were Peter de Blanc and Linden Chiu, with Chiu directing. “Thanks to both Games of Berkeley and the Bay Area Go Players Association, who provided clocks and stones,” said Chiu.
Results: 1st: Ming Curran 3d (3-0); 2nd: Sean Wahl 10k (3-0); 3rd: Garnet Chaney 19k (3-0).
photo courtesy Linden Chiu
Cristian Pop of Romania has won the top division in the 2014 Kidocup, Europe’s biggest weekend tournament, held June 7-8 in Hamburg, Germany. A total of 224 go players from nearly a dozen different countries gathered for the competition, which included plenty of casual play as well as simuls with professionals. The festivities opened amid hot summer weather with a Korean drum group performing in the courtyard of the Heinrich Wollgast-school located in the heart of Hamburg. Alexandr Dinerstein (Russia) edged out Jan Simara (Chechia) and Mateusz Surma (Poland) for second place in the ”European Top 8, a round robin competition of the strongest players at Kidocup; Simara took third and Surma fourth. Ali Jabarin (Israel) was 5th, Pavol Lisy 6th, Cornel Burzo 7th and Ondrej Silt 8th. Andrii Kravets 6D (Ukraine) won the main tournament. Click here for complete results of the handicap section and Tobias Berben’s detailed tournament report (in German) and photos. Click here for an additional report and photos.
- photo: Cristian Pop, at right, playing Ondrij Silt 6d; second board is Jabarin-Lisy
Game results from this year’s Young Kwon National Online Tournament (YKNOT) will be included in the new AGA Online Ratings system, the AGA reports. This is similar to the AGA On-Line Games Self-Paired Tournament on KGS, which is also contributing results to the new AGA Online Ratings system, which is still in development.
The Young Kwon National Online Tournament is the largest annual online tournament in North America. Registration is free and open to all levels, with nearly $3,000 in total prizes, which will be awarded to all levels. The tournament will take place on June 21, 22, and 28th. Click here to see the tournament webpage with registration details and rules and click here to register. Players have until Friday, June 20th to register. There are no citizen or permanent residency requirements; AGA members living in the US or AGA life members living anywhere are eligible, and even players who join the AGA the day before the start of the tournament are welcome to participate.
Peter Freedman, of Portland, OR, has been named the AGF Teacher of the Year, winning a free trip to the US Go Congress in NYC. Freedman, who has been active in the Portland area for decades, has focused his primary activities on youth go in recent years. Freedman and Fritz Balwit (2011 AGF Teacher of the Year) had tried to establish go clubs in schools for many years, but they were short-lived and drew minimal numbers “Meanwhile, our chess and go program at Irvington Elementary had run for many years, with upwards of 30 students every term,” Freedman told the Journal. ”It became clear to me that chess and go clubs have a much better chance to introduce children and teens to go than free-standing go clubs. I approached several school chess coaches about the idea of morphing their programs into chess and go clubs, and now there are over 100 children in these clubs, spread over five schools, I teach go and Fritz teaches chess in most schools. The students can play only chess; play only go; or, switch between chess and go each month. New students must play a month of go before they decide on their option. There is a segment of our culture that knows, appreciates and respects chess, while only a few know of go. Yet, many of us were chess players before we were go players. It seems like a nice path. We need a new motto: chess is our friend, not our enemy.”
AGA President Andy Okun had this to say about Freedman: “While many people know him as a club organizer, AGA volunteer and co-director of the really successful 2008 Portland Congress, Peter has also been teaching go for many years, and very intensively since retiring eight years ago. For the last three years, he’s run the Irvington Elementary School Go Team, which has played matches against teams in Portland, Detroit and Mexico City. He led the effort to make the Portland Go Club a 501c3 so it could raise money for a go in the schools program, and has raised thousands of dollars for that effort.” Recent activities included bringing Mingjiu Jiang 7P to Portland, for a workshop attended by 19 players from across Oregon, ranging in age from 7 to 72, and strength from beginner to 3 dan. “Nine of the players were kids or teens,” said Freedman, “one of whom taught himself to play three months ago, another was a 7 year old kgs 3 kyu. Andrew Nguy, who recently started the robust David Douglas H.S. Go Club, was also in attendance. Mingjiu was up to the challenge of teaching such a diverse group, moving from simple problems to more complex ones that the advanced people could chew on.”
“The AGF board faced a very tough decision again this year,” reports President Terry Benson, “with five extremely strong candidates, each of whom fully deserved the award. Fortunately, we choose a new teacher every year, and the other candidates will all have a chance again next year.” Freedman and Balwitz have put together curriculum guides and outlines for their method, which can be downloaded on the AGA Teaching Page. Free equipment, Hikaru no Go, and other resources are available on the AGF website. -Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor. Photos: Top: The Irvington Elementary Go Team plays a match against Mexico City, Freedman is 2nd from right; Bottom: students at the Mingjiu Jiang workshop last April.