A Six Stone Game

British Go Journal No. 12. August 1970. Page 12.

This game appeared in the work "How to Improve Your Go", by Iwamoto, 8 dan, who was one of the leading Japanese players in the fifties. Comments are by him, and he takes the white stones in the game.

Black: Ohashi, 1p
White: Iwamoto, 8p
Handicap: 6 stones.

The game-file in SGF format.

You might wish to open a second window beside the first one to view Fig 1 whilst reading the text in the first window.

Figure 1 (1-100)

  • Black 8: Rather weak. A would have been better. Had white 7' been at B, there would have been a threat that white would follow up with C or 56. As it stands, there is little immediate danger.
  • Black 12: Black should first protect the corner at A, but if he wishes to save the marked stone he should play at D, so as not to force the play in the unprotected top corner. After 12, the sequence played to 16 is natural.
  • White 17; Too early. E was better. This would be answered with black 25, white 17. Then if black 18, white 19 and black cannot cut at 20 [A in Dia 1].
    Diagram 1

    [No diagram in BGJ, only text.]
    Diagram 2

    [No diagram in BGJ, only text.]
  • Black 20: Should White answer with 24, then Black will cut on the other side with F, white 23 captures, black 21, white 28 or 47 but he is in difficulty.
  • Black 22: No. he must play G. The comment applies to all such situations; the fear of ko is groundless, but common.
  • White 29: White might have played at H, but then black could have answered at I, which is very large.
  • Black 30: Good. White is in trouble.
  • White 31: If he played at 37 instead, the sequence to 7 in Dia 3 makes white safe in the corner, but then Black can play 8 which is not good for white.
    Diagram 3

    [No diagram in BGJ, only text.]
  • Black 34: Good.
  • Black 38: Safe, but a bit weak. Black could have played at 45 to threaten the White stones below.
  • Black 46: The jump to 52 would have been proper, but in a six stone game 46 is acceptable as it makes for easier play for Black.
  • Black 56: Weak. It would have been better to play the sequence in Dia 4.
    Diagram 4

    Black 7 at 2.
    [No diagram in BGJ, only text.]
    Diagram 5

    [No diagram in BGJ, only text.]
  • White 65: White is now alive, but black outside strength has increased. The situation is still difficult for White.
  • Black 66: Unnecessary. Better was 67, or better still Dia 5 to threaten the whole white group.
  • Black 68; Black could have played at J. His position is very solid and he can afford to play very strongly.
  • Black 70: No. This invites white into the corner. The correct play was black 79, white 80, black K.
  • Black 86: Weak, he should have played at 87 to attack the white chain.
  • Black 88: Better to have played 91, then if white L, black 88.
  • White 97: Now white is safe here, but black is still ahead in points.
Figure 2 (101-156)

  • Black 104: Weak. Dia 6 would have kept sente, and gained about 7 points for Black.
    Diagram 6

    [No diagram in BGJ, only text.]
    [I don't see how Dia 6 keeps sente. sgb]
  • White 125: Big; it prevents A, a sente play worth 6 or 7 points.
  • Black 132: Black can't play at B instead, because then white C, black 133, white D, cutting off six black stones in the upper left corner.

The record breaks off at move 156. Black won by two points.


This article is from the British Go Journal Issue 12
which is one of a series of back issues now available on the web.

Last updated Thu May 04 2017. If you have any comments, please email the webmaster on web-master AT britgo DOT org.