In doing so, Kim also earned himself a promotion to 9 dan!
3 straight wins
After winning the first two games of the best of five final on April 16 and 17, it seemed likely that Kim would win the title.
However, few would have predicted such a decisive 3-0 victory, especially against Lee Sedol.
En route to the final
Lee’s semifinal match against Park Younghun 9p was a reprise of last year’s GS Caltex Cup final.
Meanwhile, Kim defeated Cho Hanseung to earn his spot in the final.
Living up to expectations
Kim has long been considered one of the strongest players in Korea.
He’s particularly strong at fighting, especially in fast games. His only other win as an individual was in another rapid tourament, the Price Information Cup, in 2009.
So far, international success has eluded him, but his results have been getting better and better lately.
Kim also excels in team events. He’s received the Korean Baduk League’s Most Valuable Player (MVP) award three times.
He’s also been selected three times for the Korean Nongshim Cup team.
Is Lee Sedol in a slump?
Hopefully Lee can get back in shape in preparation for his jubango with Gu Li later this year.
GS Caltex Cup
The GS Caltex Cup is one of the most generously sponsored Korean domestic Go tournaments, with the winner taking away 70 million Won (approximately $60,000 USD).
It’s also one of the fastest tournaments with only 10 minutes main time and 3 x 40 seconds byo-yomi.
Until 2004, when LG restructured into LG (which sponsors the international LG Cup) and GS, the tournament was known as the Korean LG Cup.
In this tournament, professionals play in a knockout format with the final decided by a five game match. The tournament structure has changed several times over the years.
Up until the 15th year, the tournament was played with a challenger facing the defending title holder. The challenger has been decided by both round robin and single knockout formats.
GS Caltex is a South Korean oil and energy company.