The 8th annual Durham Go Tournament took place in the lecture theatres of Elvet Riverside - the usual six-round McMahon tournament with lightning and small board side events. 42 players took part, a pleasingly high turnout, and for the first time the tournament was won by a Durham player, recent acquisition Andrew Kay, who was the only player to win all six games.
Natasha Regan celebrated her 40th birthday by winning the British Pair Go Championship for a second year running with Matthew Cocke. This time they beat Kirsty Healey and Matthew Macfadyen in the final. The handicap winners from 2008, Sam McCarthy and John Collins, won the handicap section again. Best dressed pair was Jenny Radcliffe and organiser Francis Roads.
The match between the party of visiting retired Japanese Go players and the BGA/London team ended very close. With one result to come in it was tied at 8 all. The outstanding game, the bottom board, decided it in Japan's favour 9-8. Winning for the British side were Nick Krempel, Alex Rix, Jonathan Chetwynd, Michael Webster, Jonathan Turner, Xinyi Lu, Jiri Keller and Roger Daniel.
Matthew Macfadyen, British Champion 2010, won all seven games in the Challengers' League to earn the right to defend his title. This year he will be playing Nick Krempel (3 dan London), who won five games in the League, in a best of 3 final. Hui Wang and Alistair Wall just missed out on playing for the title by one win each.
For the first time in many years, the Scottish Open was won this year not by a Scottish resident but someone Scottish-born - Sandy Taylor (2 dan Durham) - winning all five games to take his first tournament title. 23 players took part in total. A drop in local players was caused by the closure of long-term sponsor Real Time Worlds and a local wedding anniversary.
The organiser of the Bracknell Tournament was also the winner: Ian Marsh (1 kyu Bracknell) was the best of the 28 players. Also winning all three were Xinyi Lu (4 kyu Maidenhead) and Laurence Anderson (7 kyu Bracknell). Poland's Marcel Zantman (6 kyu) won two and then had a last round jigo.
14 players took part in the Cambridge Bar-Low. The only players winning 4 games were in equal first: Graham Lamburn (1 kyu), John Richardson (1 kyu) and Adan Mordcovich (2 kyu).
28 players from 2 kyu to 5 dan attended the Candidates' Tournament held at Selwyn College in Cambridge. Andrew Kay (4 dan) was unbeaten winner and Des Cann (4 dan) won five out of six. The rest of the qualifiers, on 4/6, were Hui Wang (5 dan), Alan Thornton (1 dan), William Brooks (3 dan), Nick Krempel (3 dan) and Alistair Wall (3 dan).
After a 4 year gap, Guildford-based West Surrey Go Club won the Thames Valley Team Tournament for a second time, winning ahead of teams from Maidenhead, Bracknell and Reading. Mark Nubbert from West Surrey led his team by being the only player with three wins. The winners in the traditional 10x10 side event were Xinyi Lu with 7 wins and Tony Atkins with 4/4.
St Albans club held the first Welwyn Garden City Tournament in the Bridge Room at Gosling Sports Centre. 17 players took part but nobody won all three games. A tie at the top was partly split leaving Alison Bexfield (2 dan Letchworth) and Alan Thornton (1 dan St Albans) as equal winners, 1 sos point ahead of Andrew Simons (3 dan Cambridge).