Fujisawa game review: Nihon Ki-in “first place” tournament, 1959

The following kifu and most of the comments included are from the Fujisawa Complete Works, volume 3. For advice on how to study professional games, read this essay.

Fujisawa Hideyuki got promoted to 8 dan just one month before this game.

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Nihon Ki-in awards ceremony and Mimura-sensei’s present

As I tweeted earlier, last Tuesday I went to see Nihon Ki-in’s annual awards ceremony. The Japanese year starts on April 1, and so the ceremony is fittingly held towards the very end of the year. The ceremony consisted of speeches by important people, giving the Ōkura Kishichiro prize to a few more aged people, giving prizes for professionals due to highest winning ratio/longest winning streak/most games played/etc., and of course announcing the new professional one dan players (who amounted to six people). Here are the new professionals in a photo:

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Finally, getting interesting

Long time no write!

Well, it’s actually been only a little more than one week, but what with all the activities I’ve had recently, it relatively feels like a longer time. As I wrote last week, I did two interviews and visited in total three different go schools in addition to that of Nihon Ki-in’s. Actually, I still haven’t got too much time to formulate a long blog post, so for now I’m only writing this as a status update. In less than two hours, I’m meeting with an acquaintance at the Nihon Ki-in, in order to play a few games and study together before the weekly English class. The acquaintance is not a professional, but is still close to professional level.

Some of you may have noticed that I also have a Twitter account. Since writing longer blog posts takes its own time, it might be handy if I wrote quicker status updates mostly by Twitter. I’ll look into whether I can implement a feature on this page’s right-side bar to show my latest few Twitter posts. Up until then, feel free to have a look at my Twitter page. I haven’t written too much there so far, but that’s likely change soon!

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In China, part six: Last week, and return home

Hi everybody! It’s been a while since the last post: things got surprisingly busy on my last whole week in China, and I thought it better to take the extra time out of my internet activities. I was asked to give a more comprehensive description about our life in Beijing, so here goes, albeit a little late on my part: I already returned to Finland last Wednesday.

The participants were divided to three apartments quite close-by to each other. All the apartments were situated in a neighbourhood named the Brown Stone Manor (He Shi Yuan) that was closed off by walls and guarded gates, to make sure that no unauthorized people got in. Two of the apartments were for students only, consisting of two bedrooms, one bathroom, one living room, and a kitchen. Surviving with one bathroom got a bit difficult at times, since there was about 8-10 people living in each apartment at the same time. The third apartment, which had three stories, housed some of the participants, but also worked as the teaching area. Unfortunately I didn’t come to take pictures of the apartments myself, so for now at least we’ll have to do without those.

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In China, part two: Arrival, and playing at the Japanese go salon

Yes, Japanese go salon – not Chinese. There’s, as far as I know, exactly one Japanese-type go salon in Beijing, with a go equipment store included. I was also extremely thrilled to find a traditional Japanese room with all manner of things Fujisawa Shuko inside: his old paper fan, eyeglasses, hat, go books, go sets, etc. I spent a good while taking pictures, one of which is included right below.

After seeing the room, I went to the equipment store and got myself a replica of the fan Shuko used to have — its price was equal to ten restaurant trips in Beijing, but I wasn’t concerned about money at the time.

Of course, a trip to a go salon also involves playing. I got paired against the owner of the go salon, according to what I heard, a Chinese 6 dan. The game was of good quality, and turned out very exciting. I’m hard-pressed to find enough time to comment the game at the moment, but here’s the kifu nevertheless!

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Apart from the go salon trip, there really hasn’t been time for anything but to getting used to the new environment. The arrival was especially difficult: I didn’t sleep on the airplane at all, so I was already tired when we arrived in Beijing in the morning. I did manage to stay awake until about 5 PM, but then couldn’t help falling asleep — and waking up at 10 PM! We then went to a restaurant and passed some time, and finally got around to sleeping at 2 AM. After that, my sleeping rhythm has become somewhat more regular.

Time to go sleep now, catch you all later! I’ll try to get around to writing some thoughts about the game presented earlier.

3-3 strategy; Pandanet European Team Championships, round three

Today’s post’s theme revolves around strategy based on the 3-3 point, as per Joachim’s inquiry. The example game in question was played yesterday in the Pandanet European Team Championships: I defeated Catalin Taranu of Romania by resignation, getting revenge for my loss to him in the European Go Congress 2010. The game this time was very good, with few apparent mistakes for both sides. I received commentary for the game by An Younggil 8 dan professional right after the game; some bits of what I write here come from there. I play black.

More sharp-eyed readers might notice that I differentiate between writing about black in first person and in third person: when I write in first person, I am reflecting on my thoughts during the game, and when in third person I’m looking at the position now, after the game.
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Preparing for Rabbity six, part one

One of my main ways of studying go, probably not unlike most mid-to-high dan players’, is to review games by professional players. As long as you understand what the players are going about, this way of studying is pretty much as useful as reading a go book. The understanding part however is not quite so simple, and can often require a lot of thought work. I shall use this blog to present my thoughts about professional games that interest me, and also to sort out my thoughts to myself.

The game I’m reviewing this time was played in 1995 by Kato Masao (white) and Fujisawa Shuko, the latter being my favourite professional player. He has a nice, solid style, and is able to play in an incredibly relaxed way. As you shall read later, however, he is actually not the one to have the greatest influence on my playing style. Feel free to guess in the comment section who the most influential one is!

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