The main draw of the 16th Samsung Cup is about to be finalized, with just one more preliminary match between Baek Sungho 9p and Kim Soojang 9p to be played today (August 9, 2011).
[Update: Baek Sungho won his match with Kim Soojang and qualified for the round of 32]
The Samsung Cup has a rather complicated draw. The main draw consists of 32 players, 13 of whom are seeded into the main draw.
Thirteen players are seeded
This year’s seeds are China’s Gu Li 9p, Piao Wenyao 9p and Kong Jie 9p; Korea’s Kim Jiseok 7p, Heo Youngho 9p, Park Junghwan 9p, Lee Sedol 9p, Choi Cheolhan 9p, Park Younghun 9p, Won Seongjin 9p; two players from Japan and one wildcard, who are yet to be announced.
The other 19 spots are decided by preliminary matches, in which top amateurs also take part. The preliminaries are split into three divisions: male, female and veterans.
Players who’ve made it through
The following players have won their way through to the main draw: Korea’s Kang Dongyun 9p, Kim Junghyun 3p, Na Hyun 1p, Kang Seungmin 2p, Kim Dongho 2p, Lee Younggu 8p, Jen Youngkyu 5p, Jiang Zhujiu 9p, Park Jieun 9p and China’s Sun Li 5p, Li Zhe 6p, Guo Wenchao 5p, Chen Yaoye 9p, Tan Xiao 5p, Wang Tao 4p, Peng Liyao 5p, Li Xuanhao 3p, Song Ronghui 5p.
Notably, Li Xuanhao is only 16 years old and quite an up and coming professional player in China. He has been dubbed the “next Gu Li” by Chinese media.
Fans of Joanne Missingham, who plays professionally as Hei Jiajia 5p, may be interested to know she made it through the first round of the preliminaries. Unfortunately, she faced Park Jieun 9p in the second round and was eliminated after an exciting game.
Lee Changho needs a wildcard
This year’s draw brought several surprises. Lee Changho 9p was not seeded into the main draw and much to everyone’s amazement, lost his last preliminary match to Jen Youngkyu 5p.
Another surprise casualty of the preliminaries was fellow Korean, Cho Hanseung 9p. However, Cho did fall to Chen Yaoye 9p, one of China’s top pros, so perhaps this was not as unexpected as Lee’s loss.
In the women’s section of the draw, the legendary Rui Naiwei 9p was defeated by Tang Yi 2p of China. This means Lee, Cho and Rui are now at the the mercy of tournament organizers, who will award one wildcard for the main draw.
[Update: The wildcard was awarded to Lee Changho.]
Who do you think should get the wildcard?
Do you think Lee, Cho or Rui should be given a second chance and be awarded the wildcard? Vote in our poll and leave a comment below.
Who do you think should get the wildcard in the 16th Samsung Cup?
- Lee Changho 9p (65%, 33 Votes)
- Rui Naiwei 9p (27%, 14 Votes)
- Cho Hanseung 9p (8%, 4 Votes)