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 Post subject: The way to BlackBelt
Post #1 Posted: Mon Aug 11, 2014 4:38 am 
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Intro

Hello, this is just a journal I decided to make to help me reach 1 Dan, and eventually "pro strength" in the far future...

I believe this would be good for three reasons:

1 - Weaker players can look at commented games of mine, and they could ask questions. This would help them improve.
2 - I'd be very grateful if stronger players (or anyone!) would be so kind to give opinions and comments on my games :bow: I seem to have hit a roadblock, and direction of play is my biggest issue.
3 - Organizing my study and having a "timeline" of my progress will be good to train my discipline, and help me see progress.

Apart from that, I really don't know why I'm doing this exactly :) it's just great to do.
Oh, and because I'm aiming for 1 Dan, feel free to criticize my moves :tmbup: be as severe as you have to.

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 Post subject: Brief Yet Long Overview Of Go Journey.
Post #2 Posted: Mon Aug 11, 2014 2:15 pm 
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Brief Yet Long Overview Of Go Journey.

Started playing Go in October 2011, after someone discovered the Hikaru no Go GBA seemingly at random.
First was playing the HnG GBA opponents (a brilliant way to introduce kids into go) and watched show. After a small while downloaded a few go programs. I mainly played Gnugo, Feugo and Aya but was hesitant to play on-line until April, when I played a few games and found I was around 13 kyu (after a 3k resigned for no reason against me, and I lost all the way to 13k :lol: until I got upset thought I was 20k, and then badly beat one in an even game and felt guilty afterwards).
I would look up to and admire the high kyu players, but never thought I'd be one ;-) .

I also would attempt the tsumego on the Hitachi website, but failed half the elementary problems and solving an inter mediate was so uncommon that success called for jumping up and down.

I discovered many great Go websites, like GoGameGuru, which made me a fan of commented go games, and learngo.co.uk, and more.

Most of my beginner games, 100+, were saved and many were commented, but I lost the hard drive and need to find it to retrieve them. Didn't play on KGS for a while until late 2013, were I was surprised to find I was about 9k, but then after quickly rising to 6k, I dropped back down to 7k and stayed around there for a year. I've never usually had the chance to play a lot of go, so spend more time studying Go. I made an IGS account in Octeber 2013. I then participated in the Milton Keynes Go tournament, travelling 90 miles, but I would have never dreamed of playing in a go tournament two years ago, as I wasn't used to socializing or doing any events, but I took he challenge, and I'm glad I did :) http://britgo.org/results/2014/mk

Now I seem to be improving again after being brave enough to try gtl, and because I don't have mobile access to tsumego, and because direction of play and feel for go is my biggest difficulty, for the past 9 months I would play through pro games commented or uncommented, and Top european players games, commented or uncommented. It's especially exiting to download games from international tournaments like the haunglongshi, LG, Quilong, or my favourite Samsung cup, and replay games of amatuers verses top pros. I even joined the gtl as a reviewer! Go, with the help of family, has definitely changed me a little.

I made a new account on KGS, after not playing for a short while, and found that I was KGS 4kyu. I remind myself however, that it's just a number in front of a name to measure something that can't really be measured.

Now I aim to get to 1 Dan KGS, (preferably 3 Dan), and I need help. I also want to give back to the Go community by helping weaker players. Hence this Journal ;). Commented games mostly played by me would be be here for weaker players to learn and stronger players to criticize my moves. You could also post games here for me and others to comment them :).

This has turned out to be a longer post than expected :shock: .

Next, I'll post on the Go situation in Britain.

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On Go proverbs:
"A fine Gotation is a diamond in the hand of a dan of wit and a pebble in the hand of a kyu" —Joseph Raux misquoted.


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 Post subject: Re: The way to BlackBelt
Post #3 Posted: Wed Aug 13, 2014 10:48 am 
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I'd like to put up some games with my own thoughts in it, partly because I want people who are 30kyu-20kyu to get a feel for high kyu games, and also so that other players could help me see blindspots of my play that I've never seen or is preventing me from reaching blackbelt-level (1 Dan) thinking.



Right now, I'm doing 30 tsumego a day and replaying 9 pro games a day (in varying amounts of detail).

Now I said that I was going to quickly post on Go in Britain, I might end up putting in these small bits of stuff like this in and between the journal, heh.

It seems that there are a number of 4D+ players, which is surprisingly good, but I was struck by the fact that there were hardly any under 18 Dan players, so I wonder weather this is normal for most western countries :-? I could be making a mistake, because I consider my progress to be at snailspace (it would be 3 years since I learnt Go in October) and yet at my pace, by the end of november I would've just turned 15, and next years I'd definately be a Dan player. I felt slightly weird.

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On Go proverbs:
"A fine Gotation is a diamond in the hand of a dan of wit and a pebble in the hand of a kyu" —Joseph Raux misquoted.

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 Post subject: Re: The way to BlackBelt
Post #4 Posted: Wed Aug 13, 2014 11:04 am 
Judan

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Hello fellow Brit, where are you? Did you learn Go from a school club, or yourself online? You are right there are hardly any dan-level children (Will Brooks got old) in Britain and I think we are quite bad at this compared to other countries (e.g. France). Do you know about the British Go Association? We have a youth squad with online training you might be interested in.

A few thoughts on your game:
- move 6: You must answer the shoulder hit locally at c4 (or d5). Shoulder hit is like a contact move, very urgent to reply. Black should ignore your q5 to play c4 himself and then your stone is very weak and stuck next to a strong wall. Whoever plays first here will get hane at heada of stones which is great advantage.
- move 10: should be r4.
- move 14: it's a good move locally, but I also want to c4.
- move 16: c4.
- move 20: c4.
- move 22: c4.
- move 24: c4.
- move 26: c4 or d17. Again don't tenuki shoulder hit.


Last edited by Uberdude on Wed Aug 13, 2014 11:12 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: The way to BlackBelt
Post #5 Posted: Thu Aug 14, 2014 2:57 am 
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Hello Uberdude, thanks for your thoughts. It seems that when black moved at 27 the game already seemed easy for black, so I see why c4 should halve been played earlier. My sibling discovered HnG basically by looking for random online GBA roms in around October 2011, and I had been mainly playing bots and a little online Go until I got too strong to play even games and played mostly online until I participated in the MK tournament (after a 90 mile drive from Kent)
which were the first three games I played over the board against someone outside family :D I seem to be improving since then, so It would be interesting to see what happens if I go next year. I'd like to enter the London Open if I can and would be happy to get to KGS 1Dan before October first, but that's a lot to ask for at this busy moment in time for me ;-) I'v been on the BGA website many yet somehow missed the online training program. Seems good, I'd definitely consider trying it out.

I wonder if it's also because there just aren't many children playing Go, for example in the MK only two children where there out of 25 people, so maybe young people under 10 years old should be the group of people we focus on and have "family themed" events during Go week in september :scratch: .

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 Post subject: Second game review.
Post #6 Posted: Sun Aug 17, 2014 1:17 am 
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This is a review of a slightly strange game played about 1.5 weeks ago. If you're a new go player you may to see how SDK thinks (not that much better than a 30 kyu, really). It may not be the most high-quality game, but I'm sure there a still many other mistakes I can't see.


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Post #7 Posted: Sun Aug 17, 2014 1:24 am 
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Hi Elom,

:b3: hmm, OK, but there are still 2 open corners.

:w8: it's huge. W got 1 of the 2 remaining open corners.

:w10: W got both of the 2 remaining open corners.

:b11: Strange. W tenuki'd twice and got 2 more corners. W's D6 group is weak and you didn't attack it.

:b25: Did you read what would happen if :w26: drops to S17 ? Can your corner live ?


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 Post subject: Re: Second game review.
Post #8 Posted: Sun Aug 17, 2014 1:38 am 
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Elom wrote:



:b9: Almost as big as taking the lower right corner?

:b11: The top side is surely now bigger.

:b15: Both players are missing the big open area at the top.

:b19: Black can't do much by playing here: the lower White group is stable, and the upper White group can defend easily.

:b23: Too late, and the exchange for :w24: is a loss.

:b25: is reasonable direction.

:b49: Actually Black has been lucky to come out even this well from a bad fight.

:w50: Fills a liberty that is important later.

:b71: Sharp.

:b87: onwards: seem complacent.


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 Post subject: Re: The way to BlackBelt
Post #9 Posted: Sun Aug 17, 2014 4:36 am 
Judan

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FYI http://www.britgo.org/node/4748

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 Post subject: Re: The way to BlackBelt
Post #10 Posted: Wed Aug 20, 2014 12:31 pm 
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Hello, thanks for the insightful comments you've all posted.
I seems that it was dangerous to leave the upper right corner, if white played there black would escape but white would build tremendous thickness!

I'd like to know your opinion on this corner sequence I saw in one of the wbaduk lectures ( [Advanced] 3-4 Jeongseok(joseki) ).

The lecturer says this result is even, but to me it seems heavily one sided :scratch:

Click Here To Show Diagram Code
[go]$$ Part 1
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . 3 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . 1 , . . 0 . . , . . . . . , . . . |
$$ | . . . . 2 . 5 8 4 . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . 9 6 7 . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ ---------------------------------------[/go]


Click Here To Show Diagram Code
[go]$$ Part 2
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . X 0 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . X , 3 2 O . . , . . . . . , . . . |
$$ | . . . 9 O 1 X O O . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . 4 X O X 8 . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . 6 7 5 . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ ---------------------------------------[/go]


Click Here To Show Diagram Code
[go]$$ Part 3
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . 3 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . 2 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . X O . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . X 1 X O O . . , . . . . . , . . . |
$$ | . . . X O X X O O . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . O X O X O . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . O X X . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ ---------------------------------------[/go]


If all goes according to plan, I might attend one or two days in the London Open in December, so it would be nice to enter in as one kyu before that. One solution: 30 tsumego a day, and 9 pro games :lol: .

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Post #11 Posted: Wed Aug 20, 2014 1:11 pm 
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You like B because of the cash ?

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 Post subject: Re: The way to BlackBelt
Post #12 Posted: Wed Aug 20, 2014 2:03 pm 
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Click Here To Show Diagram Code
[go]$$W Later White sente
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . X . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . O . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . X O . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . B X X O O . . , . . . . . , . . . |
$$ | . . . X O X X O O . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . 2 O X C X O . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . 4 O X X 3 1 . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ ---------------------------------------[/go]


Captured White stone at :ec:.

Maybe he favors White because of the inefficient Black stone at :bc:.

:)

N. B. If the teacher said that this was an even exchange, that was slightly loose language. Black has played one more stone than White, and therefore should have an advantage of around 14 points.

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Post #13 Posted: Wed Aug 20, 2014 2:12 pm 
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( Bill, I'm guessing it's B's cash. :)
Yes, B was there first, and W ends in sente. )

Click Here To Show Diagram Code
[go]$$W
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . X . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . O . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . X O . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . X X X O O . . , . . . . . , . . . |
$$ | . . . X O X X O O . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . O X . X O . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . O X X . a b . . . . . . . . . |
$$ -----------------------------------------[/go]
For this standard shape, my guess is
W would normally save both (a) and (b) sente moves until later.

Now I'm looking at W's cuts. :scratch:

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Post #14 Posted: Wed Aug 20, 2014 2:17 pm 
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EdLee wrote:
( Bill, I'm guessing it's B's cash. :)
Yes, B was there first, and W ended in sente. )


That's why the lecturer calling it an even exchange could be confusing. It could be interpreted as saying that the result is even, which it is not.

Quote:
Click Here To Show Diagram Code
[go]$$W
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . X . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . O . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . X O . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . X X X O O . . , . . . . . , . . . |
$$ | . . . X O X X O O . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . O X . X O . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . O X X . a b . . . . . . . . . |
$$ -----------------------------------------[/go]
For this standard shape, my guess is
W would normally save both (a) and (b) sente moves until later.


Yes. Good point about "b" being a potential sente. :)

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 Post subject: Re: The way to BlackBelt
Post #15 Posted: Wed Aug 20, 2014 3:00 pm 
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EdLee: Yes, sorry for forgetting to state it before, but it seemed better for black due to the the cash, and also because white's postion doesn't seem very solid compared to blacks, even after the sente moves (this was shown on the lecture too, and it still seemed that white's influence was inferior to black's large amount of territory partly because of whites cutting points)

But Uberdude showed quite an interesting variation on the joseki that seems to have been chosen for that exact situation, and seems to work well to me. I guess some joseki very much depend on the outside circumstances ;-)

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 Post subject: Re: The way to BlackBelt
Post #16 Posted: Wed Aug 20, 2014 3:15 pm 
Judan

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It requires more skill to efficiently use the white position, whereas all black needs to do to use his position is count the game. Here is an example of Catalin Taranu using in the EGC a few years ago. See how it was sente there because of the b7 aji (and black can't answer b7 with the b8 tesuji which normally works because white has the descent or kosumi as sente.



Edit: I deleted this post because Catalin's game is a 4-4 corner so even bigger! But put it back because Elom saw it and maybe interesting anyway.

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 Post subject: Third Game Review
Post #17 Posted: Thu Aug 21, 2014 12:24 pm 
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I made an account on IGS and ended up playing an even game with an IGS 1 dan from the netherlands (partly because I once read that it is best for a SDK to set your rank to 1D and fall to your correct level). I think I did okay, and held up fairly well for a while (partly becsue my opponent blundered-- um, but let's not talk about that, heh :) ) until I made a mistake near the end. Regardless of the result, I think that this game may point out differences between me and dan level players which I can't see yet.



At this rate the top London Open players should watch out! (not :lol: )

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 Post subject: Re: Third Game Review
Post #18 Posted: Thu Aug 21, 2014 1:01 pm 
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Elom wrote:
Regardless of the result, I think that this game may point out differences between me and dan level players which I can't see yet.





:w30: At this point we can see White is stronger, not through fighting, but because White's position is just better organised.

:b31: Must be bigger to enclose the lower right corner, denying White's best extension.

:b33: No, you've lost a tempo: E15 would make more sense now.

:b41: The thought is OK, but you've given up too much on the left.

:b43: At H11 is the "natural flow".

:b51: Your :b45: was slow, though the reasoning is normal. This is wild. And it really contradicts :b45: to allow the lower side to be broken.

:w60: You needed to kill this group. Now you probably can't win ...

:b63: Pretty bad. Try not even to think of these plays!


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 Post subject: Re: The way to BlackBelt
Post #19 Posted: Thu Aug 21, 2014 2:41 pm 
Judan

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Often people don't tenuki enough, but in the opening here I think you tenukid too much. Perhaps trying to be too clever? Focus more on making good solid shapes. Btw in the variation for 21 white can cut at c3 and kill the corner. I admire Charles' restraint in calling 51 wild ;-) .


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 Post subject: Re: The way to BlackBelt
Post #20 Posted: Fri Aug 22, 2014 9:28 am 
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Yeah, I went a little... well okay a lot overboard with the experimental stuff :) thanks for your comments.

For some reason I seem to be improving quickly. From February 2013 to February 2014 I stayed pretty much stagnant, gaining about just two stones (kgs 8k-6k, or EGF 10k-8k) but in may, during the MK, I was entered in as 8 kyu. Now I'm around EGF 5k, according to KGS and IGS :scratch: geuss I can't complain, replaying lots of pro games seems to have done the trick!

PS: Move 51 can only be called, "Mad scientist" :)

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