Alex Kent Completes Herd of Goats at Durham

10 June 2017 - 11 June 2017

Report from Andrew Ambrose-Thurman:

The rain was falling heavily as people made their way to the first morning of Durham Go Tournament 2017, this year held at Durham's Oriental Museum. Despite the downpour there was a reasonable turnout of 29, with this being several people's first tournament, and ranks ranged from 20k to 3d.

This year we decided to video the games on the top board and stream them live over the internet. We also projected the video onto a big screen in the side room, where people were reviewing games and playing in the side events. (The videos from all 6 games are available at )

The Oriental Museum contains a large number of interesting exhibits, and they kindly offered free entry to everyone at the tournament. Many of the players took advantage of this and of the use of their cafe.

On the Saturday evening, after Round 3, there was an All-You-Can-Eat Go BBQ. After the heavy rain of the morning the sun decided to come out just in time, and instead of being inside-if-wet a lot of people ended up playing Go sitting on the grass. Around half of the people at the tournament came along, and much food was consumed. The party broke up late in the evening, after copious quantities of sloe gin were consumed, with some people staying the night...

The Sunday started smoothly, with only two players arriving late. The peace of the tournament was briefly broken, however, when we discovered that the rooms in which we were playing are usually used on a Sunday for a school run for the children of Chinese expats - and they didn't seem to have told the children or parents about the change of venue. The people organising this were very helpful, and once the initial confusion was resolved they moved everyone upstairs to a different room. We then just had to field the occasional confused child or parent who wandered in by mistake!

It was great to have a wide range of strength and experience at the tournament. At one extreme were people who had been playing for decades; at the other, one of the Durham players played more games at the tournament than they had ever played on a 19x19 board before. At the prize giving, fans from the Oriental Museum went to a number of the 'Plucky DDKs'.

The tournament was again won overall by Alex Kent, whose collection of Goat Ornaments was increased yet again and now stands at a herd of five (pictured above). The side events were won by Paul Smith (Lightning) and Neil Sandford (Small Board). Prizes (including various forms of Durham alcohol and items from the Oriental Museum) were also given to people on 4 wins and above - Yanan Cui (1d), Hailiang Du (3k), Edward Blockley (5k), William Hong (7k), Jonathan Grant (9k), Mengchu Li (10k), Pat Ridley (11k) and Scott Hicklin (20k). Results

The tournament completed, many people retired to a pub near the station to have a meal and wait for trains.

Durham Go Tournament will return in 2018 - probably the same venue and format, but we're also planning to offer things like free camping (bring your own tent). Dates will be announced soon!

Last updated Mon Jun 19 2017. If you have any comments, please email the webmaster on web-master AT britgo DOT org.