Saturday, November 14, 2009

Yamashita Keigo Won the First Game

The 35th Tengen title match series have started. The first game was played in November 12 at Matsumoto, Nagano.

Yamashita Keigo (challenger) played black, while Cho U the title holder played white.

35th Tengen, first title match

Cho played his trademark at move 4. He directly approach black, instead of occupying the empty corner. It's been awhile, since Cho rarely plays it now. Yamashita answered with an outside attach. Move 10 by white is not the usual follow up. Usually white will play O3 in this situation. Move 10 is questionable since it let black to play hane at N4. The outcome was favorable for Yamashita.

The exchange in the corner led to a difficult fight. After the crosscut at K7, both players started a semeai. The fight was better for black, since it has aji from stones at F12 and G12.

After an interesting 319 moves, Cho U resigned the game. He was behind about 6 points on board.

Yamashita marked a good start in the series, while Cho must play better to defend his title, or he will lose another title after his Meijin.

Yamashita Keigo

Yamashita Keigo was Tengen title holder in 2005, before he lost it to Kono Rin. Yamashita challenged Kono for the next 2 consecutive years, but never managed to show a good performance (he only won once in each series). Cho won the title from Kono Rin last year.