News from the American Go Association

March 17, 2006
Volume 7, #23


WEEKEND GO ACTION: Raleigh, NC & Sunnyvale, CA
CHAPTER NEWS: A Cup Grows in Iowa
GAME COMMENTARY: Challenger Bonanza
GO REVIEW: Lee Chang Ho's Novel Plays and Shapes
ATTACHED FILE(S): 2006.03.17 Challenge, boxwood-Larson, Chung; 2006.03.17 Challenge, Crumpler-kingtrango, Chung; 2006.03.17 Challenge, M2910-Fiorillo, Hung; 2006.03.17 Yilun Yang's 2006 New Year's Puzzle SOLUTION

SALANTRIE TOPS ICE STATION ZEBRA: Frank Salantrie went 4-0 to take the top record in the February 17 Ice Station Zebra tournament, held in Black Mountain, NC, the site of the upcoming US Go Congress. "The seventeen tournament participants enjoyed an Ice Station Zebra tournament that lived up to its name as the white snow fell on Black Mountain," reports Mitch Franklin, publicity director for the 2006 US Go Congress. "We look forward to returning to the campus of mountainous beauty in August." Participants with 3-1 records: Adam Bridges 3k, William S. Cobb 5k, Bob Bacon 9k, and Dale Blann 18k. Visit for more information about the upcoming US Go Congress, or email Mitch Franklin,

FENG YUN ORGANIZES BEIJING YOUTH GO CAMP: Feng Yun 9P is organizing the first-ever Youth Summer Go Camp in Beijing, China this summer. The camp will run July 9 through August 6. "This program is intended to offer students the experience of studying go with local go players at same age," reports Feng Yun. "In addition, they will be exposed to Chinese culture, as well as an opportunity to visit ancient Beijing." The co-organizer is Beijing XingZe Go School, which has been approved by Beijing Municipal Education Commission. Applicants must be self-motivated students with beginner skills or greater, 8 or older, and in good health. More info at: 973-992-5675

UNSOLVED YANG: There's no winner in the 2006 Yang life and death problem (2/24 EJ), since no-one came up with a complete correct solution. Honorable Mentions to Phil Waldron 6d, William Cushing 1d and Michael Wallstedt 4k, who all found the correct first move, but missed the correct killing sequence. See the attached file for the solution and look for a brand new year problem soon! Meanwhile, we still have no correct answers yet for the March 10 Yang problem; the winner will be drawn at random from those submitting correct solutions and will receive copies of a Yang problem book. Note: solutions must be submitted as .sgf files to by midnight, March 31.

RATINGS UPDATED: Online AGA ratings -- -- have been updated as of March 13 and include data from the following recent tournaments: Tenuki to Vermont Go Tournament, Middlebury, VT (3/4); Cedar Rapids Go Club Rated Games (3/2); Lakeview Go Club Rated Games, Chicago, IL (2/28); All-Iowa Go Tournament, Des Moines, IA (2/26); New Jersey Open, Princeton, NJ (2/25-26); Black Mountain Self-Paired Tournament, NC (2/18-19); Black Mountain Paired Tournament, NC (2/18); Mid-Winter Tournament, Seattle Go Center, WA (2/18); Valentine's Lonely Hearts, Arlington, VA (2/18); Monthly Ratings Tournament, Seattle Go Center (2/5); Feng Yun Go School Monthly Rated Games, Piscataway, NJ (2/4); Cedar Rapids Go Club Rated Games, IA (2/3).

GO REVIEWS WANTED: The EJ is looking for reviews of the following go books: WeiQi in Culture, by Wu SongSheng (Yutopian); A Journey in Search of the Origins of Go, by Shirakawa Masayoshi (Yutopian); Mastering the Basics of Go, by Lim and Dickey (Slate & Shell); The Go Player's Almanac 2001, by Richard Bozulich (Kiseido); Reducing Territorial Frameworks, by Fujisawa Shuko (Kiseido). Reviewers receive a $25 go vendor gift certificate; email if interested.

JAPANESE OUT IN CHUNLAN SECOND ROUND: No Japanese players survived the second round of the international Chunlan Cup. Six Chinese and two Koreans advanced. Details on Monday.

HANE AND IMAMURA TO FACE OFF IN NHK FINALS: Hane Naoki 9P and Imamura Toshiya 9P will meet in the final of the 53rd fast-play NHK Cup in Japan. Details on Monday.

COMING UP: "I not only went 1-5 in the Oza, but when I returned home to Minnesota I went on a losing streak that knocked me from IGS 4K right on down into the basement of 5k, verging on 6K, which I though I'd never see again." Look for the rest of Joel Turnipseed's next column in Monday's EJ!

TIME RUNNING OUT FOR GO WORLD OFFER: The clock is ticking down on the March Go World bonus offer! Anyone joining the AGA - or renewing their membership - this month gets a free copy of Go World! Get a 2 or 3-year membership and double or triple the fun with 2 or 3 free Go Worlds. And AGA chapters who join or renew are eligible too, and get double the current offer for new or renewing members (i.e. 2 Go Worlds for 1 year, 4 for 2 years and 6 for 3 years). The English-language quarterly from Kiseido provides in-depth coverage of top tournament games along with a wealth of terrific instructional material. Join now at

WEEKEND GO ACTION: Raleigh, NC & Sunnyvale, CA
- March 18: Raleigh, NC
Combined NCSU and Cary Go Club Tournament
Owen Chen 919-531-9234
- March 19: Sunnyvale, CA
10th Jujo Jiang Cup Youth Goe Tournament
Mingjiu Jiang 650-969-2857

CHAPTER NEWS: A Cup Grows in Iowa
      The All-Iowa Go Tournament Cup started with a simple invitation to play. Last Fall, Jacob Uptain of the Cedar Rapids (Iowa) Go Club invited Duncan Brown to play in the Cedar Rapids tournament in November. "At the time, I was a long-lapsed member of the AGA," Brown tells the EJ. "I re-joined the AGA that day, and then registered the Fairfield Go Club as an AGA chapter not long after the November tournament. Then I announced the December All-Iowa tournament."
      "I figured that, since I was getting players from all over the state (at the time, Des Moines, Fairfield, Waterloo, Iowa City, Ames, and Cedar Rapids), it would be fun to have some sort of team competition in addition to the individual competition," Brown adds. "If clubs competed against clubs, that could help to galvanize the clubs to get more members, get the members they had stronger, and bring as many of them as possible to the tournament to compete."
      The results have been "gratifying," says Brown. Chapters have strengthened and grown statewide, and new members have joined the AGA at well-attended tournaments in November, December, January and February. "The Waterloo Go Club has become an AGA chapter, with several enthusiastic players in 10-year-old 6th-grader Will Shirey's elementary school," says Brown. "I'll be going up to Waterloo within the next month or so for a day of go instruction and exhibition games for the Waterloo Go Club."
      Brown has developed some informal rules for the Iowa Cup: at least 3 players each from three different Iowa go clubs must play at a tournament for it to qualify as an Iowa Cup event; each win for a club member counts 1 point, each bye counts 1/2 point (1 pre-requested bye allowed per player per tournament; forced byes due to odd number of players are unlimited); the club with the most accumulated points wins the Cup; no weighting to compensate if one club brings 8 players, and one brings 3, since the idea is to encourage all clubs to bring as many players as possible.
      "We wrestled with the issue of whether players from the same club should play each-other during an Iowa Cup competition," says Brown. "We tried to avoid it in two of the Iowa-Cup tournaments, but I'm now convinced it's not an important issue. My hope for the future is a vigorous group of go clubs in Iowa that regularly get together to share their passion for go in tournament play. Also, I want a lot of Iowa AGA members, with the accompanying nationally-recognized ratings and connections to the larger go community. If the Iowa Cup helps any of the above come about, it's more than served its purpose."
      Find out more at

GAME COMMENTARY: Challenger Bonanza
       We have a bonanza of three 2006 Shodan Challenge game commentaries today: Luke Chung 6d takes a look at a 3-stone game by Stephen James Larson 22k and an even game by Ken Crumpler 14k, while Joey Hung 8d reviews a 2-stone game by Thomas Fiorillo 24k. Players of all strengths will find much of interest in these thorough commentaries.

GO REVIEW: Lee Chang Ho's Novel Plays and Shapes
By Lee Chang Ho
Reviewed by Phil Waldron 6d
       When I first heard that a book bearing Lee Chang Ho's name had been translated into English, I was initially dubious. In Asia, it is common practice to issue poor go books under the name of a new title holder, and I wondered if this might be the case here. I was therefore pleasantly surprised to find "Lee Chang Ho's Novel Plays and Shapes" to be a highly original and useful addition to my go library.
       Each of the book's fifteen chapters is devoted to a single new move, typically a joseki variation or branching point in the opening. The analysis is extremely thorough (46 diagrams in one case), providing the major strategic variations before coming to a (not always favorable) conclusion about the new move. The discussion of positions focuses largely on issues like prospects for development and the relative value of thickness and territory. These strategic concepts take some playing strength to understand, and the book will be most useful to dan-level players.
       While the quality and quantity of analysis present in this book is excellent, it does not come as a light read. Being largely focused on the full-board position, the book does not pay much attention to some of the tactical details. Readers are expected to fill in the blanks on their own, a style that seems to be common in Korean go books. Whatever the merits of the approach, which I personally favor, it does provide interesting problems for study.
       "Lee Chang Ho's Novel Plays and Shapes" aims to present the thinking and analysis behind some recent innovations in professional and fills that goal admirably. This book will be invaluable for players looking for study material, but those needing a light read for the subway should probably look elsewhere.
       Available at

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Assistant Editor: Bill Cobb

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