Like I already mentioned both on Twitter and Facebook, I got a two-wins-one-loss result today, on my first C class day. The loss was against insei number 12, and the wins were against 8 and 9. Of these, only insei number 9 was in C class in the last month as well. Number 12, Fujiwara (actually a girl!), is turning into an antagonist at a fair pace.
As the more careful readers might have noticed, there’s something mysterious with the way the classes are organized this month: insei number 9 was in C class last month, and insei number 8 was in D class. I’m at place number seven. There seems to have been some reorganizing as this month, there is a female-only tournament named 女流特別合同予選. I’m sorry, I have no idea how that is supposed to be read, and even the meaning escapes me. I wouldn’t be surprised if it was a female-only professional exam, or something similar. As female insei from several classes are taking the tournament, there has apparently been some rigorous reorganizing in the normal insei classes. A funny side effect is that this month, three insei from C class get promoted, while four get demoted. I don’t feel up to answer the myriad additional questions the new setup brings on, so here we have both the pairing table of C class, and the whole insei setup. Sorry for the poor quality!
Today, I got one of my games reviewed by a guest high dan professional; each day, there is usually a non-insei teacher who takes care of the reviews, and sometimes the guest is even a celebrity. I was quite surprised when Kamimura-sensei asked me to go to the reviewing table to have my game reviewed, and the teacher waiting for me there was none other than Yoda Norimoto 9 dan, clad in a kimono. I received some good insights as to what to do differently in the opening and in the early middle game. I’ll put off writing a summary of the review for a few more days, however, as it’ll take me a few hours to do and I’ve limited time today. As the insei day was nearing its end, Yoda-sensei was asked to speak a bit about his own time as an insei, and about what’s important while studying. A big portion of the content I couldn’t understand, but he seemed to be making the point that one really has to put all their effort into studying; half-baked thinking like “it’d be nice if I could become strong, but…” won’t cut it.
On another note, I’m currently trying to formulate a kikashi-related go theory blog post in my head, as it seems to be a subject that many amateur players have a weird impression about. Several times here in Japan, I’ve myself got surprised about really uncommon kinds of kikashi. Even a basic corner approach can be one, given the right board situation! It’d be nice if there was a better English translation for the term, as “forcing move” really doesn’t cut it to me — a big part of the meaning is lost in that English translation. I’ll see what I can do about this subject in the (hopefully close) future, but don’t count on me to invent a new English term!