40th World Amateur Go Championship: Day Three
On the fifth round, the Japanese Kawaguchi Tsubasa lost to the Chinese Wang Chen and the Chinese Hong Kong player Chan Nai San lost to the Korean Lee Jaesung. Subsequently, the Chinese and Korean representatives faced on the sixth round in what was probably going to be the decisive match for the tournament.
Both players started the game very steadily, taking few risks, and in fact there was very little fighting at any point in the game. When white played the shoulder hit of 60, black opted to link his stones on the upper side with 61, but then white’s capture of 62–68 gave white a locally favourable result. Following that, white kept the game in his grip, and even with the successful invasion of black 121, etc., white was favoured for the win.
The decisive fight broke out with black 145. White’s defence was solid and, up to 175, he still held the lead. However, white 180 let black complicate the situation, when a jump at around f10 would have been good enough. White 186 is probably the losing move: black 187 captured six stones in the centre, and although white could then return to capture four black stones with 194, black had profited slightly from the whole exchange. The rest of the endgame was played precisely by both sides, and it does not look like there was a way for white to avoid a half-point loss.
With six wins after six rounds, the Chinese Wang Chen is set to win the tournament, provided that he does not lose on the remaining two rounds. This is Wang’s third time to play at the WAGC, and so far the championship has always eluded him. Perhaps third time is the charm?