This was the third iteration of this invitational match and Choi Cheolhan won by 1.5 points.
The first of these matches was played in 2012 and the players were Ma Xiaochun 9p and Liu Xiaoguang 9p. Ma won the game.
In 2013, Lee Sedol 9p and Gu Li 9p were invited to play in Jingdezhen, and Lee emerged victorious.
An interesting opening
Chen held black and the opening of the game was interesting.
Chen started the game with a variant of the Micro Chinese opening, and established some territory at the top.
Choi responded by attacking Black’s left side group, with alternating jumps in the center and at the bottom, up to 40.
Black dies, but maintains balance
The middle game started with move 41. Black built a large territory at the top up to 73, while White continued attacking Black’s left side group.
After White cut at 78, Black’s left side group was captured. However, Black 93, 99 and 101 were a good combination, and the game was still well balanced up to 109.
Black started a leaning attack against White’s center group with 111 and 113, but the result up to 134 wasn’t particularly successful, so the game was still even.
Both players falter
White 142 was a mistake, and Black punished White with the powerful combination of 149 and 151. As a result, Black captured some of White’s stones and took the lead.
Black 169 was a mistake, and Choi didn’t miss his chance.
White 170 and 172 were good endgame tesuji, and the game became very close.
Black 181 was another questionable move and the game was reversed when White played at 182.
After that, both players’ endgame was perfect, and Chen didn’t get any more chances to reverse the game.
Choi Cheolhan conquers his demons
In particular, Chen defeated Choi in eight consecutive games, from 2007 to 2012.
However, Choi defeated Chen once again in Jingdezhen and their head to head record since 2013 is actually 3-1 in Choi’s favor now.
About the Jingdezhen matches
Last year, this exhibition match was called the Tianxin Pharmaceutical Cup, but it’s also sponsored by the city of Jingdezhen itself.
After that meeting, the jubango was realized.
The winner’s prize is 150,000 RMB (approx $24,500 USD at the time of writing) and the runner up receives 100,000 RMB (approx $16,000 USD).
The time limit for the game was 2 hours and 30 minutes with 5 x 60 seconds byo-yomi for each player.
The game was played under the Chinese rules, with komi of 7.5 points.
Jingdezhen City (景德鎭) is located in Jiangxi province, China, and is very famous for its China (porcelain). It’s also the hometown of Chen Yaoye’s father.
The popular blue and white porcelain which originated in China is made in Jingdezhen – even the trophy for this match was made in that style. Ceramic Go stones are also made in Jingdezhen and an annual ceramics expo is held there.