Pontefract Castle Game

British Go Journal No. 41. May 1978. Page 5.

1st British Championship

Shodans don't play like they used to, Thank Heavens! Jon and Colin would be the first to admit that their play is only up to present-day [1978] standard. No matter. Nothing is as incomprehensible as a game without mistakes.

Black: Colin Irving, 1d
White: Jon Diamond, 1d
Komi: 5

Played at 'Pontefract Castle', London in Autumn 1965
The game-file in SGF format.

Figure 1 (1-100)

33 at 25, 34 at 29, 39 at 25.
  • Black 13: When a move like 11 is ignored it is often very strong to follow up with another. Black's corner becomes very large and strong.
  • Black 21: The sequence to white 40, excluding 38 is the 'bread and butter' tesuji. Note especially black 29, following the proverb: 'add a stone and sacrifice two'. This tesuji is surprisingly common, against the edge as well as the corner.
  • White 44: A standard strong response to 43, which is too narrow an extension from his very strong corner. 50 is better - a vital point for reducing White's corner.
  • Black 49: By attacking with a high 4th-line move, white has the chance to slip under to 53 or jump to the centre. Black cannot stop both, so white takes 50.
  • Black 59: This capture makes black very strong, but white's shape is almost perfect after 60. Not a successful attack for black.
  • Black 61: His reward for 59 is an attack on 6-8-10 which will be driven towards the black ponnuki.
  • Black 83: This turns out badly. Black above 77, white 84, black 85, white 83 produces a similar shape without sacrificing a stone. But Black has problems anyway. He would like to steer between the two White groups, then turn and attack the upper group - but he has already made that group too strong.
  • White 90: White 88 weakened black 45. White expands his side upwards and is now attacking black.
Figure 2 (101-206)

132 ko at 126, 134 fill at 125, 139 fills ko at white triangle, 154 fills ko at 147, 195 ko at black triangle, 197 fills ko at 186.
  • White 118: Greedy. 119 is the focal point of two moyos. Whoever plays there first will expand his own area while reducing his opponents.
  • White 120: Even greedier. Black 121 is a tremendous move, forcing White back in bad shape.
  • Black 123: Naturally; now White's group is in trouble.
  • Black 131: Black's reward is a ko, but this is a bad ko threat - because it only threatens another ko. He should threaten white's right hand group, or break into the giant left hand corner.
  • White 138: White exchanges his threatened group for cutting off the black centre stones.
  • Black 151: Black makes a sort of breakthrough, but in the following sequence can only struggle towards a single eye.

White wins by resignation.


This article is from the British Go Journal Issue 41
which is one of a series of back issues now available on the web.

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