Recently I was speaking to a friend in Korea, on the phone, and I had an opportunity to say hello to Na Hyun (1p). I asked him a few brief questions, for his fans at Go Game Guru.
I’d like to introduce some more of the top 20 Go players of 2010. Won Seongjin (9p) of Korea and Li Zhe (6p) of China are both currently ranked number 9 according to Dr Bai Taeil. Won Seongjin became a pro in 1998 when he was only 13 years old. Li Zhe became a pro in 2000, when he was only 11. Let’s talk a bit about these two players.
Cho Insun is the first Go player who qualified as a professional under the Korean Baduk Association’s new rules for amateur players. To qualify this way, Cho had to earn 100 points, by defeating professional players in open tournaments. It’s very difficult to do, but Cho Insun did it! This is very exciting news for amateur players. I’ve written a little about Cho Insun and how he qualified, as well as my thoughts on this new system.
This article is part of the series: Top 20 Go Players of 2010. Today I’d like to introduce the only two players in the top 20 whom An Younggil (8p), who has been covering this series, hasn’t met or played personally. At number 11, we have China’s Zhou Ruiyang (5p) and at number 12, we have Zhou’s fellow countryman, Tuo Jiaxi (3p). Zhou and Tuo are both young promising players, rapidly climbing the ranks and carving out a name for themselves on the world stage.
For those who are new to Go, you may not have heard of Go Seigen yet. However, you don’t need to play for very long before hearing about this great master. Go Seigen is a legend in the Go world. In fact, he is one of the first professional Go players many people learn about, along with Lee Changho. He is also well known by the Chinese reading of his name, Wu Qingyuan (吴清源).
The next two players in the Top 20 Go Players of 2010 are Lee Changho (9p) and Qiu Jun (8p). Lee Changho is the most well-known player in the Go world today, and his career is extraordinary. Qiu Jun became a pro when he was 12 in 1994. He won the Mingren (Master – Chinese equivalent of Meijin) in 2003. He has become one of the top players in China.
Kim Jiseok was born in 1989, and is considered one of rising stars in Korea. He has been known as a Baduk genius since he was very young and he became a pro at the age of fourteen. Wang Xi was in his prime between 2004-2007. During that time it seemed he was stronger than anybody else and it looked as if he didn’t even need to fight to win.
The first article in a series, introducing the ‘Top 20 Go players in the world in 2010’ according to Dr Bai Taeil’s world ranking. Lee YoungGu was ranked as No. 20, and Park YoungHun was 19th. They studied together at the Yu ChangHyuk’s Baduk School in Boon-Dang, and they’re very close to each other.