August 4, 2012 became a momentous day for Go in the Western world when North America certified its first home grown professional Go players.
16 players compete to go pro
Starting on July 30, 16 top amateurs from the USA and Canada met to compete in a double elimination tournament, titled the AGA-Tygem Pro Finals, to decide whom among them would be the first American pros.
The 1st AGA-Tygem Pro Finals
The establishment of a pro system in America was announced in December last year when incoming AGA President, Andy Okun, signed agreements with the Korean Baduk Association and Tygem (a popular Go server).
With generous support from Korea, the AGA is hoping the new professional system will help to raise the profile of the game in the West. The crew from The Surrounding Game were also on site, filming the event.
Congratulations Andy Liu and Gansheng Shi!