4th BC Card Cup finals about to begin!

Korea’s lone rider, Baek Hongseok 9p, is still on his horse in the 4th BC Card Cup.

Baek Hongseok

Korea's Baek Hongseok 9 dan. 4th BC Card Cup finalist.

On May 9, 2012 Baek defeated China’s Hu Yaoyu 8p to reach the final of the 4th BC Card Cup.

It’s goes without saying that this delighted Korean Go fans, who’ve been following him since the quarter finals.

Dang Yifei

The following day, China’s Dang Yifei 4p defeated fellow countryman Piao Wenyao 9p, to join Baek in the finals.

Dang has had a dream run at this year’s tournament, beating Lee Sedol 9p and Park Younghun 9p along the way.

A turning point for both players

This final marks a crucial point in both players’ careers.

Whoever wins the best of 5 matches played over the next week will break through with their first international title.

Dang Yifei (4 dan, right) plays Piao Wenyao (9 dan) in the semifinal.

Dang has yet to win even a domestic title in China, while Baek’s best result to date is runner up at last year’s Asian TV Cup.

Going into the quarter finals, Baek Hongseok and Park Younghun were the only Korean players remaining, with Chinese players taking the remaining six places.

As I mentioned above, Park was knocked out when he met Dang in that round.

Since the BC Card Cup uses a knockout format, a certain amount of attrition was unavoidable between Chinese players, but Baek has done very well to progress to the final.

A dangerous youngster

China's Dark horse: Dang Yifei 4 dan.

Dang is only 17 years old, so winning the final would put him in the record books amongst the best players of the modern age.

He still lacks experience, but his semifinal game against Piao Wenyao shows the dangerous accuracy of his reading.

This pairing will make for a very interesting final and the sponsors will be happy with a China vs Korea showdown.

Watch the finals

You can watch the 4th BC Card Cup live at Go Game Guru on Baduk TV.

The official coverage for game 1 starts at:

  • 12:30pm Korean Standard Time, Saturday May 12
  • 5:30am Central European Summer Time, Saturday May 12
  • 3:30am Greenwich Mean Time, Saturday May 12 (adjust for European Summer Time)
  • 11:30pm US Eastern Daylight Saving Time, Friday May 11, 2012.

Who do you think will win?

Will Korea’s Baek Hongseok be the first to cross the finish line or will China’s dark horse, Dang Yifei, overtake him on the last mile? Share your thoughts by commenting below.

Baek Hongseok (left) playing Hu Yaoyu 8 dan.

About the BC Card Cup

The BC Card Cup is an international Go tournament sponsored by BC Card, Korea’s largest credit card company. The inaugural tournament was held in 2009.

The format is a single knockout of 64 players: 3 from Korea, 2 from China, 2 from Japan, 1 from Taiwan, 2 wild cards (chosen by the Korean Baduk Association) and 54 players who qualify through the preliminary rounds.

Game records

Hu Yaoyu vs Baek Hongseok


Download SGF File (Go Game Record)


Dang Yifei vs Piao Wenyao


Download SGF File (Go Game Record)


Related Articles

About Jing

Jing likes writing, and can occasionally be convinced to play a game of Go. Even though she doesn't play Go as often as she once did, she still enjoys following the professional Go scene and writing about it on Go Game Guru.

You can follow Go Game Guru on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Youtube.


  1. Hi, thanks for this article but I would to know what is the pace of play.

    • ?

    • Hi Hugo, BC Card Cup is played with 1 hour main time each and then 30 seconds byo yomi – quite fast by professional standards.

      • Thank you.

      • Hi, but last night’s game (night for me in U.S. east coast) was 2 hours for each player (in the final), wasn’t it? The clocks started at 10:00. Even tho I don’t speak Korean, so understood nothing, I watched the whole game (until 4:30 a.m. here) and thought it was really exciting! When is the next game? Is it also free from Baduk TV? Thank you, Baduk TV!!

        • Hi Dave, I’m happy to hear you’re enjoying it! The second game underway at the moment. It’s at the same time every day. After this they have a one day break (May 14 in Korea) and then games are scheduled for the following three days, assuming it goes that far.

          You can have a look at our new Baduk TV guide here:

  2. Frederik says:

    I hope Baek Hongseok wins, but I’m guessing Dang Yifei will win. He seems to be really sharp.

    • Dang is certainly impressive but don’t count Baek out – he has the home turf advantage.

  3. Baek Hongseok is my personal favourite, I certainly hope he’ll make it!

  4. balakirev says:

    heh…. looks like I’m the only one supporting the chinese guy 🙁

    unfortunately i have a hunch that the korean guy’s gonna win. But at least it’ll be a good experience no matter what the outcome is.. – for the both of them.

    Good luck!

    • The first major international final is always a milestone – I’m sure it will be memorable for both players.
      And don’t worry, I’m sure Dang has quite a few Chinese fans cheering him on. 🙂

  5. I think the game of Dang against Piao was a very one sided affair, or? White never had enough territory, and his attack on the black centre group not only failed but backfired on white. To me, a very impressive win of Dang. Thank you for showing!

    Kind regards,

  6. lightmeup says:

    Dang has been like a magician so far, completely amazing. I’m therefore rooting for the underdog!

    • Dang’s certainly had a brilliant run at this year’s tournament – let’s hope we see more of him in the future!

  7. dont understand though, why in the first game, between Hu and Baek, after white played t15 (move 160) black simply did not play for living, making two eyes….anyone to give some reasonable reasons?? next few moves after this for black seemed smaller to me…thanks

    • Uberdude says:

      Of course black can live, but it is so humiliating and submissive to have to fill in your territory of a once strong group to make two eyes like that. So instead he fought back with the p12 move which says “If you make placement to kill me, I will connect my group to safety”. Also notice that the big white group coming out to L11 is not totally alive yet so black can aim to threaten this to help connect to his top right group. However, white got the very nice sente move at k14 and it turns out black didn’t manage to connect his group nor kill the big white group below, so he resigned. I expect black was under time pressure so he couldn’t read so precisely. If black was far ahead then maybe he would just live (even though it totally lacks fighting spirit), but I imagine this game was too close for that.

      • Thanks Uberdude. As I mentioned above, BC Card Cup time settings are quite fast so you may very well be right. 🙂

        I can ask Younggil or David to comment on it though if readers would like that.

  8. Lukas (miao) says:

    by experience the youngster will make it 🙂
    I root for both though

    • Baek is only 25 – hardly over the hill yet! 🙂 Good luck to both players.

      • Byung Soo Lee says:

        You know what is sad? Baek is younger than my younger sister… Now I feel old.

        Doesn’t Dang Yifei give off an aura similar to Sakata? Very “razor-like”. Sharp!

        One reason to root for Baek: I heard that he has to serve in the military for 2 years after this year. Dang might be ruling over the go world for the next decade. Why not let Baek have his moment of glory. Dang is sure to have many more.

        • I didn’t know that about Baek. The military service, not the age, that is. He’s younger than me too! I hope for Baek’s sake he can win the Cup then, because then he might get exempted from service like other players have. Younggil says it’s very hard work to come back to your previous level after two years in the army. 🙁

          • David Ormerod says:

            According to Younggil, even if Baek wins he’ll still have to start his military service after this. Younggil said that ever since Baduk was reclassified from an art into a sport, the only way to get an exemption is to win a gold medal in the Olympics or Asian Games.

            However, since Go isn’t currently played in the Olympics, the Asian Games is the only option for pros. And Go won’t be played in the 2014 Asian Games so there are basically no options left for current pros. The 2010 Asian Games was the last chance for a lot of current players. Park Junghwan was one of the players who won gold medals there.

            Is anyone interested in learning more about this stuff by the way? Or is it not that interesting?

            • balakirev says:

              I’m sure you’ll get a decent readership should you guys decide to write an article or two about it.

            • Byung Soo Lee says:

              It would be interesting to read about how this affects the Korean go scene. It seems that most (all?) of the Korean players that Mr. An covered in his “Top 20 Players” series have received exemptions from military service. I wonder if the military service requirement is one of the major factors affecting the depth of the Korean player pool. After all, they have to serve in their 20s, either during their primes or critical growth periods. It seems very cruel to the pros, who have pretty much abandoned every other road in life to walk the narrow path of being a go player.

              I read that winners of the Fujitsu Cup (now defunct) and the Ing Cup also received exemptions, but perhaps that is no longer true.

              It makes me sad that Baek can’t get an exemption even if he wins, but perhaps being a world champion in the record books once will be enough consolation.

  9. Dang Yifei (fake) says:

    I will win

  10. I was wrong about the pace, it was an hour each. Today I saw Lee Sedol play a Korean Baduk League game, and it was even faster: they just started with a 30 second byoyomi. It was so great to see him play! Taped, of course: shown at 3 a.m. Korean time. I also saw a nice women vs. seniors game — but I couldn’t tell who was playing. Is there a list somewhere of Korean names along with romaji?

    • It’s amazing how long a game in 30 seconds byoyomi can actually go for, isn’t it? It sounds like the women vs seniors match you watched was the GG Auction Cup. I’m sorry, I don’t know who was playing because I don’t think it was a live match.

      There’s a partial list of Korean Go player names here, but it needs a lot of work:

      Younggil says you can learn to read Korean enough to sound out the names in about three days. Remember it’s a phonetic system, more like the Western alphabet than Chinese characters.

      • Yes, in my last Japanese class, a Korean friend explained it a bit, and it looked fairly easy (a lot easier than kanji!). I’ll try it. I was too sleepy to watch the whole game last night. This morning it was hard to find news, but a Chinese site said 1-1. I look forward to your site having the game records! I really, really like Baduk TV!

        • David Ormerod says:

          Right Dave, it’s 1-1.

          For anyone who hasn’t been following, Dang won the first game and Baek won the second game. Game 3 is tomorrow.

          More details in the TV guide.

  11. I bet on Dang Yifei. He is completely amazing not only in BC Card Cup, but in all tournaments in 2012 и 2011 preliminary of 16th Samsung, 17th LG, 1st Bailing 1st round, 24th Mingren lost only in semifinals to Kong Jie, 10th South-West Qiwang runner-up… 18 wins in world-s tournaments and only 1 loss to Baek recently he is #1 with 95% winrate. 21 win 5 loss in China tournaments make him #1 in win-loss ratio in China too with 81% its completely amazing. So 1-1 in finals of BC-Card. if it was knock-out in finals too, Dang would win already ^^

  12. Baek has 15-3 in worlds tournament win-loss 2012 and he is #3 after Dang and Chen Yaoye. In Korean tournaments Baek better result than Dang: he has 24 win and 5 loss (83%), but its only 4th place in Korea after Park Yeunghun 26-12, Na Hyun 25-4 and Kim Jiseok 25-6. They are counting amount of games won first, than ratio.
    Baek was quite successful in 29th and 30th KBS Cup: get to the finals and both times lost to Park Yunghwan.. 39th Myeongin finals lost to Park Yeonghun. 23th Asian TV Cup lost in final to Kong Jie. 16th LG Cup preliminary final lost to Wang Xi. So as we can see Baek always get to finals crushing lots of strong players, but losing in final to someone :/

  13. Park Junghwan really knows how to beat Baek Hongsuk: he beat him in 29 and 30 KBS Cup in Korea in winners bracket (2 wins) and after Baek get to finals from losers, still lost to Park 2-0 2 times… Dang should watch this 6 kifu’s ^^

  14. Dang > korean Meijin (Park Yeonghun) Park Yeonghun > Baek Hongsuk in 39 Myeongin (korean Meijin) title, so Dang > Park ^^

  15. Who won game 3? Searching for “BC Card Cup news” gives something about Stanley cup rioters. I found something on the Korean Baduk org site for game 2 (I found “1-1”, tho I couldn’t read anything else), but this time every BC Card Cup linked I clicked on asked for a member login. It’s really hard to believe that the best go playing in the world has such poor news coverage!! I know gogameguru can’t do news, but somebody should!

    • Redstick says:

      Dave: Baek won game 3 by resignation. For game results I recommend gokifu.com. You can normally find game records from major (and not so major) games the next morning. Also, if you have a smartphone the WBaduk app let’s you watch live. It’s not Baduk TV but at least you see the board.

      • Thank you so much! I will definitely use gokifu.com a lot! I don’t have a smartphone, but anyway I can’t keep awake during the night games (I did stay up for the first BC Card Cup game, and really enjoyed it). I like Baduk TV so much. I was just watching a replay of a game between Park Jieun, 9d, and Park Jiyeon, 2d — and that’s the only way I recognized them, but looking at my favorite “go news site”, http://igokisen.web.fc2.com/news.html, and finding a Korean women’s game between a 9-dan and a 2-dan. Tho I still don’t know which of their 3 games it was. I’m learning Japanese, and unfortunately my brain is too small to learn 2 languages, but I think I’ll try to learn to sound out Hangul, at least. I really enjoy watching live games, taped games, and replays on Baduk TV. I wish there were a similar show in Japanese, but I doubt it: for example, Nihon Kiin list international tournaments but is VERY SLOW in updating them; no surprise, with Japanese players hardly ever doing well.