Tygem Correspondents

European Go Congress in Bordeaux


European Go Congress in Bordeaux (23rd July ~ 6th August)



Introduction - what is the European Congress?
Have you ever heard of the European Go Congress? It is the biggest go related event in Europe which takes place every year every summer for 2 weeks. If you like, you can imagine a kind of "go festival"? Do you love go, French food and wine? Then you missed something this year. You should have come to the European Go Congress in Bordeaux that France organized for the first time since 14 years! The enormous campus of the Bordeaux University welcomed more than 800 players from 37 countries during the period between 23rd July and 6th August: all the records of participation were broken.


(Tournament place, Bordeaux University)


(Players analyzing their game on the grass)


(Every participants received a special bag)

What can you do exactly during the European Go Congress? If you are fanatical about go and never tire of playing, you will not be disappointed: you have many choices of tournaments.
In the morning, you can play the Main tournament which determines in 10 rounds the European champion and the open-champion. The players in the top-group have 2 hours 30 minutes of thinking time. This year, 763 players, from beginners to professional 5 dan, participated in the competition!


(Players looking at the pairings)

In the afternoon, if you are not exhausted yet after the main tournament game, you can play in the Rapid tournament with 30 minutes of thinking time. But it is not all: you also have more relaxing choices such as pair-go tournament, lightning tournament, 9x9 tournament, 13x13 tournament, rengo tournament!


(Pair-go tournament, sponsored by the world pair-go association)


In general, Wednesday and week-end are holidays for participants: many players go sightseeing.


(Beautiful grapes from Saint Emilion)


However, don't worry: during the week-end, a Week-end tournament in 5 rounds (with 445 participants this year!) awaits and on Wednesdays, you can test some side tournaments such as team, youth and veteran tournament (naturally, if your age allows participation!).
If you are a stakhanovist, you can try all of them?and with good results, you might be able de get some prizes!


(Award ceremony of the pairgo tournament)

Pro activities
Of course, you don't have to play go all the time. If you finish your game early, you may ask for a commentary from an asian professional.


(Yoo Changhyuk 9p analyzing a game)


(Yoo 9p and Nam chihyeong 1p giving a public commentary)

Almost 30 pros were present at the Congress in Bordeaux: some of them were officially sent by their Federation, others came just to enjoy their "goistic" vacation in Bordeaux.


(Takemiya Masaki 9p talking about his philosophy)


(Takemiya 9p dancing with elegance)


What a great pleasure for us, living far from Asia! More than just knowledge about go, they conveyed their passion for the game through commentaries, simultaneous games or lessons.


(Morino Setsuo 9p giving simultaneous games)


Thanks to Fan Hui 2p, the national teacher of France, the Congress also had the honor to welcome Xi'an and Shanghai teams from the Chinese professional League, with world class top-players such as Chang Hao 9p, Hu Yaoyu 8p, Wang Yuhui 8p, Qiu Jun 9p (who became the finalist of the Fujitsu cup just after the Congress !). The 4 games between both teams were broadcasted on live and commented with humor by Wang Runan 8p, former president of the Chinese Federation.


(Zhang Yanqi 6d, Huang Chen 5p, Chang Hao 9p, Wang Runan 8p)

The system of the European Go championship has changed this year. After 7 rounds, the best 8 players of European nationality disputed the final stage. The following players qualified : Taranu Catalin 5p, Cornel Burzo 6d (Romania), Ilja Shikshin 7d, Alexander Dinerchtein 3p (Russia), Artem Kachanovsky 7d(Ukraine), Thomas Debarre 6d (France), Dusan Mitic 6d(Serbia) and Ondrej Silt 6d(Czech Republic). Ilja Shikshin 7d beat Taranu Catalin 5p in the finals and won the European champion title for the second year in a row. Morino Setsuo 9p who commented the final game was amazed by the style of the new champion: "His force of fighting is extraordinary. He can go further". Artem Kachanovsky 7d got the 3rd place before Alexander Dinerchtein 3p.


(Ilia Shikshin 7d Thomas Debarre 6d)


(Catalin Taranu 5p, vice European champion also gave public lessons)


The main tournament was dominated by Korean players: Kim Youngsam and Jeon Sangyoun 7d won the first and the second places.


(Kim Youngsam 7d, "open champion" of the main tournamnet)


 Bonus pictures


("Cosmos of nine dragons" by artist Tkahashi Liku, was exposed at the congress)


This work, inspired by a game of Honinbo Shusaku, is a "tangible" painting, conceived especially for blind people.


(Ko Juyeon 8p plays a "4 colors go". Seems complicated!)


(Ms.Hotta Yumi, author of "Hikaru no go" gave a public interview)


(Giant simultaneous games under trees)


(Hsieh Yimin 5p plays a "blind game" with Mr.Kakishima Mitsuharu, 3k on a special board)


(Friendly game between China and France. Can players from Xian resist French beauties?)


(Hayashi Kozo 6p plays Sanshin, instrument from Okinawa, in duet with a guitar)


(Who is this? Oooh, this is Takemiya sensei!!)



You can find complete results here: http://egc2011.eu/index.php/en/results-pairing
Check the very nice videos produced by Fred Donzet 5d, former French go-champion and professional videographer. They illustrate very well the atmosphere of the Congress.
Next year, the European Go Congress takes place in Bonn, Germany. You can find more information (and register!) on the official site: http://www.egc2012.eu/




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