How to Run Your Heat
of the UK Go Challenge 2016
1. Format and Timing
Your heat of the UK Go Challenge should consist of a five-round tournament of Go, played on 13x13 boards. We hope that this tournament will be enjoyable in itself, but qualifiers from the tournament will also be able to enter the UK Go Challenge national finals. Your heat should be finished by mid June 2016, in order to have your qualifiers ready for the national finals.

We suggest that you organise the heat over five sessions, with one round played each time. But if necessary you could play it in one long session, although in that case plenty of time will be needed.

In our experience, the great majority of 13x13 Go games played between school age children are completed in less than half an hour. The use of chess clocks in your heat is optional. If they are used, we recommend that the time limit should not be less than 12 minutes per player.

All players in the competition must have been under 18 on 31st August 2015.
2. Doing the Draw
Pairings are to be done according to a simplified Swiss system. This is explained below.

Before the first round, players are roughly listed in order of strength and (in a 20-player tournament) the No. 1 player plays No. 11, No. 2 plays No. 12 and so on. (In a smaller tournament, say of 10 players, No.1 would play No. 6, No. 2 would play No. 7, and so on.). If you have no idea how strong the players are relative to each other, for example if they are all beginners, the first-round draw should be done randomly.

In the second and subsequent rounds, players should be matched according to these principles, in order of priority:
(i) Nobody should normally play the same opponent more than once during the tournament.
(ii) As far as possible, players on equal scores should play each other. Where that is not possible, players on similar scores should play each other in preference to having games between players with very different numbers of points.
(iii) As far as possible, colours should be alternated, i.e. if a player has white one round, he/she should have black the next. (Note White gets an extra 7 points (komi)) However, pairing players on equal scores takes precedence over alternating colours.

3. Scoring and Prizes

Points are awarded as follows:

3 points for a win
2 points for a draw
1 point  for a loss
0 points for absence.

If there is an odd number of players in the tournament, a bye (scoring 3 points) is given to the player with no opponent. A player must not have more than one bye in the tournament. If a bye has to be given, it should be given to the lowest scoring player in the tournament who has not previously received a bye.

The prizes, won as the score is reached or passed, are:

1 pointCertificate
3 pointsCheer Words sticker - to be stuck on central star
8 pointsPlay Go! Logo Bug
11 pointsFridge Magnet
WinnerWinner's Certificate and Tote Bag Prize

One gold star is awarded for each win (the players may like to stick their stars on to their own certificate as the win them) stuck on to the row of stars.

The top scorer in each school will win the Winner's Certificate and Trophy and any prize you wish to add.
In the case of a tie, there will need to be a play-off to decide who wins it.

4. Age Bands
The age bands are Under-8, Under-10, Under-12, Under-14, Under-16 and Under-18, with ages calculated as at 31st August 2015.
5. Scorecards and Score Chart

The scorecards are intended to help you do the draw. At the start of the tournament, give each player a unique number. Fill in their number, name and age band at the top of the card.

When each round is played, write on the card the number of the opponent, the colour and the result. Use the result to work out the cumulative points score so far for the player after this round, and enter this at the bottom of the card.

The opponent numbers should help you to ensure that the same pair of players do not play each other more than once, though you could waive this rule if necessary.

UK Go Challenge
Michael Redmond
Age band
Round: 1 2 3 4 5
Opponent: 2 - 7 - 5
Colour: B - W - B
Result: Loss Bye Win Absent   Win  
Score: 1 4 7 7 10

If any players join the tournament after the first round, they will need to be given a new card and their own unique player number.

If you want to use the score chart, it also has space to record each player's number, name and age band. After each round you should enter the cumulative points score in the relevant box for each player, and write their opponent number in the corner of the square.

UK Go Challenge
No. Name Age
Round 1 Round 2 Round 3
1 Michael Redmond U18
2 Lee Chang Ho U18
3 ...        
6. Resolving Disputes
Disputes during the event are to be settled by the teacher/organiser in charge, but any queries can be referred to the UK Go Challenge organiser

In all cases the decisions of the UK Go Challenge organiser are final, and the right to refuse entry to the competition without explanation is reserved.

7. Qualification for the National Finals
This year again any young Go player will qualify for the national finals, whether thy have taken part in a heat or not, and won lots of games or not. We want as many youngsters as possible to meet other young people who like to play Go and experience the excitement of the national finals.

The national finals will be in July probably somewhere in the home counties.

At the national finals there will be prizes for individuals and also for both the senior school and the junior/primary school with the best performance.

Of course not all those qualifying will wish to travel to the finals, but we hope that many will choose to do so.

There will be an reduced entry fee for the national finals if they played in a heat, a higher fee if not. Entries must be received before the advertised cut-off date.

8. Queries/Contact
We want to help you as much as possible to enjoy the UK Go Challenge.

Please feel free to contact the UK Go Challenge organiser with any queries and comments. You can leave a message if he is not available to answer your call, and he will get back to you as soon as he can.
      0118-9268143      info @

Back to UK Go Challenge Last update: 17th December 2015