Honourable Defeat

British Go Journal No. 56. June 1982. Page 8.

Matthew Macfadyen

This is my game from the second round of the 1982 World Championships. I had black (the ninth time out of 9 that I had won the nigiri in a world championship game).

Comments are by me, but draw heavily on a discussion after the game with Shiraishi Yutaka, 9 dan.

Black: Matthew Macfadyen 6 dan (UK)
White: Fernando Aguilar 5 dan (Argentina)

The game-file in SGF format.

Figure 1 (1-54)

  • Black 9: My favourite line of the taisha - black 7 is well placed to spoil the eyeshape of Whites group.
  • Black 19: It would be nice to play 21, but white would cut at 29 and win the capturing race in the corner.
  • Black 23: Leaves many weaknesses, it would be better to play one point to the left.
  • Black 35: I was planning to build a large moyo on the right but this is pushing too hard - better would be to extend to 51 or to play on the third line on the lower side.
  • White 38: Overplay - he is trying to shut the black group in to make me add an extra stone in the corner but this is unreasonable - 38' should be one point to the right.
  • Black 43: Better at 50 - black is straining too hard to get sente.
  • White 44: Better at 51 - white is straining too hard to make Black add a stone in the corner.
  • Black 49, White 50: Both better at 51.
  • White 52: 53 is impossible since Black would cut above 30 and kill many stones.
Figure 2 (55-100)

  • White 62: He has to play here - the white group dies first if he starts a semeai. The result is not bad for White, though - even after 65 blacks lower side is weak.
  • Black 75-99: Both sides strain as hard as possible - the issue is not so much whether Black lives in the corner as what happens on the outside while he is doing so. If 98' is at 99, Black plays below 91 saving his two stones 93 and 95 and getting a big centre.
  • White 100: Both players have been waiting for this one - Blacks overplay at 23 comes home to roost.
Figure 3 (101-150)

  • Black 105: Misses the best play - this should have been at 133, White cannot reply one point above (Black would descend at 106 and kill)- so he would have to cut at 145, allowing Black to cut through the centre, securing his stones absolutely. This would separate six white stones in the centre, and with weakish stones in the centre White would be unable to invade the right side deeply. Thus Black would get compensation for sacrificing his two stones.
  • White 114, 116: These two stones are Whites profit from his attack, now 118 becomes a severe invasion and Black has little chance of getting enough territory.
  • White 140: Very solid, and almost sente - now White is definitely winning.
Figure 4 (151-194)

  • Black 157: Ludicrous - this is a straight loss of two points.
  • Black 165, 169: Unreasonable, but I was not interested in playing safely for a small loss.
  • Black 187: Should have played here earlier - maybe White would answer to the right.

White 194: Black resigns - please confirm for yourself that the Black group is unable to make two eyes.


This article is from the British Go Journal Issue 56
which is one of a series of back issues now available on the web.

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