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August 12th, 2005

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O Rissei claims place in Honinbo league; O Meien relegated from Meijin league

I mentioned in an earlier post that either O Meien or Yoda Norimoto would be relegated from the Meijin league for next year, depending on previous performance. It turns out that O had the poorer historical performance, so he’s got to try to qualify for the league again. In the meantime, the other big O in Japanese Go, O Rissei, won the final match in his preliminary group as White against Ryu Shikun by 3.5 points to claim one of the 4 open tickets in the Honinbo League next year.

The 2 players in the final of this year’s Meijin title match, Kobayashi Satoru and Cho U both played games in the Judan challenger decision tournament yesterday, with mixed success. Cho won his game, but Kobayashi lost his, relegating him to the losers’ section of the double elimination tournament. He joins Cho there, since Cho lost to Yamashita Keigo in the first round of the tournament. Yamashita Keigo worsened O Meien’s day yesterday – besides being relegated from the Meijin league, Yamashita eliminated him from the Oza challengers’ tournament in the quarterfinals.

The other news is from the female pro scene. Kato Keiko, 4-dan, who will be playing Yashiro Kumiko, 5-dan, next week to decide who will challenge Chinen Kaori, 3 dan, for the Female Honinbo title, was sent to the losers’ section of the Female Meijin tournament by Aoki Kikuyo, 8-dan. Kato resigned the game.

Korean Female Kuksu title holder Cho Hye-yeon avenged her previous loss against Lee Hajin, 1-dan, who sent her to the losers’ section of the Female Myeongin tournament, by defeating her in the losers’ section, and eliminating her from the tournament. Lee was defeated in the winners’ section by Pak Chi-eun, a respected Korean 6-dan. As Cho Hye-yeon comes closer to challenging the top world female pro, Rui Naiwei 9-dan, for the Female Myeongin title, Rui is making her bid to reclaim the Female Kuksu title from Cho, which she lost to her in 2003 – she won her first round match against Hyun Mijin, 3-dan.

Posted by Steve in Pro News

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