The 25th International Amateur Pair Go Championships was held in Tokyo at the end of October. To celebrate the silver jubilee, in addition to the usual 32 pairs from Japan and around the world an extra 30 guests were invited, people who have proved keen to promote Pair Go over the last quarter century. From the UK the extra invites went to Tony Atkins, Francis Roads, Alison and Simon Bexfield.
As the pair from Turkey dropped out at short notice, Alison and Simon were promoted to the status of players. They won two of their five games, losing to Singapore, Hungary and Germany, but beating Mexico and Italy to end in 26th place.
We won our second game of this year against Lithuania 3-1, but are only third in the league on games won.
Our first match in the new season of the C League was against Greece, one of the newest Go countries in Europe. We won it 3-1, to end the day at the top of the league alongside Bulgaria and just above Lithuania, who both also won 3-1.
The UK representative at the 2014 KPMC was Andrew Kay. He won three games out of six to come 33rd.
Chan of Chinese Taipei was the winner of the 35th WAGC on SOS tie-break from China and Korea, all on 7 wins. This is the first time since 1986 that the WAGC was won by a country ouside the big three - China, Japan and Korea. On six wins were Hong Kong, Bogdan Zhurakovskyi of the Ukraine and Lukas Podpera ofthe Czech Republic.
The World Amateur Go Championship has reached halfway. It is being held in Gyeongju, Korea, and being competed for by 54 players from around the world. China, Chinese Taipei and Lukas Podpera of the Czech Republic are the only ones on four wins, as Korea lost to Chinese Taipei and Japan lost twice.
Depite being the UK's oldest ally, the BGA team fought and beat Portugal in the Pandanet C-League on 1st April. However it was not the expected four-nil victory, with one game being lost by half a point.
Switzerland and Spain are now tied with the UK on points, but 3 and 2 board points respectively ahead.
Des Cann on the Top Board said "I formed a heavy group in the opening. However, I had to let it go and used some of the aji to build influence. I did well later and came back into the game, close going into the yose.
Then I formed another heavy little group of stones and dropped behind.
We managed to repeat our result from 2011, although we're now both in League C, not League B...
Andrew failed for us on Board 1. His opponent, whom he had beaten in the first season of the league in 2011, played some rather strange and bad moves in the opening and Andrew spent rather too long trying to punish them. Andrew didn't get much advantage (if any) and got annoyed.
The 2014 Irish Go Congress occurred over the weekend on 14th -16th February, with 44 players attending in a surprisingly sunny Dublin. Celebrating 25 years of Go in Ireland, the main tournament, the 3rd Confucius Cup, was well represented with a strong field of players.
Fan Hui (2p France) won with a perfect 5/5 score.