Baduk TV English: Kim Jiseok vs Park Junghwan – Searching for Exquisite Games: Episode 35

Searching for Exquisite Games is a Baduk TV series that reviews some of the best games of Go from the last few decades. The commentators are Yoon Seonghyun 9p and Shim Wooseop 7d.

Episode 35 looks at the final of the 3rd Baduk Masters, played on November 15, 2007. Kim Jiseok plays black and Park Junghwan plays white.

Kim Jiseok vs Park Junghwan

Video: Kim Jiseok vs Park Junghwan

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Transcript of the video



Translated by Oh Chimin 7d for GoGameGuru.com

Edited by David Ormerod 5d

Searching for Exquisite Games: Episode 35.

Natural Enemy: If you can't avoid it, face it.

Hello everyone! Today's game is from the final of the 2007 Masters Cup.

This game was played between Park Junghwan 2p and Kim Jiseok 4p [ranks at the time - now both 9p].

These two promising young players met one another in the final.

However, they're natural enemies.

Their relationship is famous.

The head to head record between these two is 2-9 against Kim.

In addition, Kim's lost seven games in a row to Park.

A losing streak can last for a long time if you fail to break it early.

Recently, Kim's lost to Park every time they've met.

The losing streak began with this game.

Young players are allowed to participate in this tournament.

At the time, Kim was designated by Yeongnam Daily as a vice anchorman in Korean Baduk League.

He was already one of the top players in Korea.

Park was the 6th player in Korean Baduk League.

No one doubted that Kim would be victorious.

But the result defied expectations.

Let's have a look at the game.

Kim Jiseok plays black, Park Junghwan plays white.

Even if a player is strong, it's hard to maintain good results against all opponents.

Kim's style of play is a significant factor here.

He likes fighting, and his reading is very quick.

On the other hand, Park's style is calm.

He's become a top class player.

In terms of popularity, Kim was ahead of Park at the time.

However, he couldn't perform well against Park.

Park was famous, even when he was an insei.

He was well known as a promising player.

In response to black's enclosure, Park split.

After that, Kim approached.

This one space jump looks special to me.

It helps black to invade here.

But, on the other hand, it leaves a weakness at the bottom.

Along with the knight's move, this jump is often played.

Since speed has been emphasized in recent fuseki, Park secured the corner.

This move is preferred by Cho Hunhyun 9p in particular.

Anyway, white left the right side.

I've often seen this invasion, but Kim attached here.

After this move, the fuseki became more interesting.

In the actual game, Park extended here. Then Kim attached.

Many variations can be created from this shape.

Previously, black invaded directly, here.

This variation was popular in Japan.

After these exchanges, white moves into the corner.

So he can settle his group.

This variation was regarded as joseki.

Many players weren't sure which side is better.

Recently though, many study groups have investigated many josekis.

According to them, this joseki is better for white, because white gets sente.

This was the revised conclusion for this pattern.

Was the diagonal attachment discovered as a result of that?

Yes. In this case, white got the corner, as well as some aji on the right side.

So, later on, players tried this knight's move and this jump.

This variation was played for a while.

But it's better for white, because white's thickness is very good.

So it quickly disappeared again.

This attachment intends to interfere with white's movement into the corner.

White's answer looks unusual. Isn't this move more common?

Yes, players used to play like this.

But this invasion is tricky.

When white attaches, black will extend here instead of bumping.

If black connects up, he'll automatically remove the aji in the corner.

It's better for black.

That's black's intention.

So this attachment was played instead.

Some players played like this.

Is it playable?

Yes, even though the corner is unstable, white needs to spend another move to invade.

However, people wanted to prepare a stronger counter to black's invasion.

As a result, another extension was investigated.

If black invades here, white can attach underneath.

Then this stone is better placed than before.

The connection looks better.

That's why people started playing like this.

However, that compelled black to come up with another move.

This attachment looks interesting.

It was first played by Lee Changho 9p.

More than a decade ago, Lee played this move in the final of the Kuksu against Cho Hunhyun 9p.

At the time, this move greatly troubled Cho.

Let's look at the actual progression first. Park haned here.

In response, Kim counter-haned.

When Park invaded , Kim captured this stone.

This led to a trade.

White acquired the corner, while black captured these stones.

When Lee played that move, the move order was different.

Cho exchanged this move first, then haned.

If black counter-hanes, white will cut.

Black needs to atari, to rescue his stone.

This push is a forcing move.

Then white can capture black's stones in net.

If white plays here later, black will jump here and capture this stone.

Since white exchanged his move in the corner earlier, he'll be able to make use of it later.

It's a huge gain for white.

So that was what Cho aimed for.

But Lee grasped Cho's intention in an instant.

After this hane, Lee kosumied here immediately.

In fact, this kind of move isn't in Go books.

The hane is possible, but this kosumi is inappropriate in most cases.

But if white connects, black can block here.

Black's position is ideal.

In addition, this invasion makes white's right side group weaker.

It's a rather bad exchange.

Since Cho invaded first, Lee varied his answer.

Lee made white's previous move bad. It shows exquisite skill.

At the time, Cho wasn't prepared for this attachment.

As a result, he didn't react properly, so Lee blocked here.

After that, Lee took the lead from an early stage.

Recently though, this variation is well studied.

So the players played without any mistakes.

Therefore, the actual progression is the latest conclusion.

After the game between Lee and Cho, they'd already reached that conclusion.

They said that white should exchange this hane before the invasion.

If black blocks here, white cuts, as in the previous variation.

This means black shouldn't block.

Up to here, it's joseki.

After that, white took another big point.

The result is even.

This jump is sente.

Despite some complicated variations, the number of moves is small.

At this point, Park played an asking move in the top right.

After that, Park extended, reducing black's potential.

It was a key point for both large frameworks, so this move was very big.

This is a typical move in this sort of situation.

Park's response was severe.

I didn't expect such a big change in this area.

However, it was Kim who instigated it.

Up to here, the sequence was normal.

In response to white's hane, black normally cuts here.

After capturing one another's stones, black pushes.

This variation is often played.

However, Kim played a very severe move.

Compared to other players, he's more aggressive.

When he was studying Go in a dojo, he used to study life and death problems with Lee Sedol 9p.

So his reading is very quick and outstanding.

To maximize his strengths, he needs to complicate the game.

But the way in which he does so can sometimes be a bit unsophisticated.

In other words, he sometimes overplays.

When it works well, he's successful. But when it doesn't, he loses many points.

It would be better to induce his opponents to start fighting naturally.

But the flow in this game isn't natural.

Nevertheless, complicating the game works well for Kim against many players, but not against Park.

That's one of the reasons why Kim is very weak against Park.

This counter-hane looks special. But isn't it possible when the ladder favors black?

Yes, when white cuts here, the ladder has to be favorable for black.

However, there are two preconditions to the counter hane.

Many people only know one though.

Let's look at the actual progression first.

The ladder I showed earlier is the first condition.

Black has to come out like this.

After this atari, black breaks through white's shape.

Can't black capture white's stones like this?

These white stones are very solid now.

Instead of connecting here, white sometimes plays tiger's mouth.

This ladder also favors black.

But, when a ko occurs, here's a nice ko threat.

If black recaptures, there aren't any other big ko threats on the board.

In this position, black can play like this, thanks to his ko threat.

Without a ko threat, black can find himself in trouble.

Yes, since Park connected here, there was no threat.

So it's hard for black to resist in this case.

You need to be mindful of this difference.

If white connects here, black's counter hane usually isn't possible.

But Kim played like this anyway.

He must've overlooked the ko.

Since he didn't have any big threats, he had to push.

So white had time to play here.

Black couldn't answer, because his liberties were very short.

He had no choice but to hane here.

White didn't need to start the ko immediately.

If he hanes, black will throw in.

Then this push is a ko threat.

These two stones are too big to give up.

Instead, white has to try to capture this group.

Black can't escape.

Since that group had only two liberties, Kim had no threats around there.

So there were no local threats.

Inevitably, black had to start the ko at this point.

Kim pushed here, as a ko threat.

But white wouldn't answer it.

In the actual game, Park ataried first.

After that, Park finished the ko, then Kim haned.

This was good enough for white.

He captured these stones, and this black group was very weak.

During a post game review, a better move was discovered.

What was that?

Was there another move than this?

First, white ataris, to make this group heavier.

Black must come out.

Since black has no ko threats, he has to extend again.

After that, white blocks here.

Should black start the ko now?

Well, then white will capture like before, but there's another good move.

This attachment is a good move, aiming to create some threats.

If white doesn't respond properly, he'll give black some local threats.

If white pushes, black can make a local threat like this.

It's no good.

So he needs to hane here.

Then this exchange is profitable for black.

Black can't connect like this.

When white captures this stone, this group is in atari.

So, with this move, black would choke himself.

Black has to throw in now.

However, that exchange is good for black.

Since white pushed several times earlier, he can attack like this now.

If he captures this group, the profit will be huge.

Even if he doesn't, he can chase and harass black.

As a result, white will gain many points at the bottom.

In addition, he can enclose this area.

Let me tell you about the difference between the two variations.

If white ataris here later, black will sacrifice his stones and atari here.

Because white's already alive in the corner, black's stones aren't very big anymore.

This white stone is isolated.

Black can make up for the loss by attacking it.

Park should have made the group heavier first.

Then black wouldn't have been able to resist.

Park missed a good opportunity.

He was only able to exchange one move.

If white pushes here now, black won't answer.

Park switched direction and pushed. White's position still looks quite good.

This is very good for white too.

But the previous variation would have been even better.

Kim pushed, aiming at the weakness of white's three stones.

Park exchanged this move in sente.

Before blocking here, Park probed with this hane.

But Kim didn't answer, and connected instead.

This hane is an interesting move.

If black cuts, nothing will happen in the corner.

But this atari is sente.

So white can try to capture black's group like this.

To save the three stones, black has to play here.

Then white strikes at the vital point.

What if black pushes and cuts?

This exchange helps white a lot in that case.

Black's entire group is in danger.

So Kim couldn't answer in the corner.

Park made good use of the aji.

After that, he double haned.

How about connecting here? Is it too simple?

Yes, white will settle in the corner very easily.

So Kim played another severe move here.

Despite the cutting point, Kim tried to attack white's group like this.

Even if white makes a ponnuki, black can still chase this group.

Yes, that group isn't alive yet.

Because of that, Park just ataried here.

If black connects, white doesn't have to capture this stone immediately.

Another interesting variation appeared here.

When Kim haned, Park played a tiger's mouth.

After that, Kim ataried, then blocked.

Locally speaking, this tiger's mouth was nonsense.

Did it affect the capturing race in the corner?

Instead of that move, white could have connected here.

Black has to block anyway.

Since there's no stone here, white has a tesuji.

This attachment is a wonderful move!

Black has to capture this stone, then white ataris.

Black can't connect. It's a ko.

Then Park would manage the situation easily.

If black has a stone here, it's different.

When white captures these two stones, black can recapture.

One move makes a big difference.

So I asked Park why he chose a tiger's mouth instead of connecting.

Even though he was aware of this variation, he decided to play the tiger's mouth.

White can make a ko in the corner like this.

But black will tenuki and jump here.

In that case, white can't settle the position with one move.

White needs two moves to finish the ko.

If white loses the ko, his group will be floating.

This will become a burden for white.

So Park decided to sacrifice his two stones.

Instead, this attachment was a forcing move.

After jumping here, white can attach later.

Instead of an uncertain life, Park chose to escape.

That's why he didn't reveal the aji.

After exchanging this hane, Park moved out.

If white captures this stone, black's tesuji at 1-1 is wonderful.

Black can capture white unconditionally.

If black blocks instead, it'll be a ko.

Because of the tiger's mouth, white's stones couldn't be rescued.

However, it was a good choice by Park.

Because the focus of the game was the center.

This area was becoming more important.

So territory wasn't either players' priority.

By jumping out, Park left aji for later.

There was another highlight at this point.

This jump looks very simple.

Yes, but Kim loves to fight.

Yes, this jump would be a common, good move.

Because it guarantees this forcing move later.

It's time to assess the overall position. Kim managed his corner well.

But he was unsuccessful in the first battle.

So he didn't choose a simple move here.

Instead, he preferred a more severe approach.

I think he'd want to strike at the vital point directly.

This counter-hane here was a severe move.

This attachment was uncommon too. Kim's moves were very aggressive.

Park didn't fall back though. He cut here immediately.

After that, he probed for Kim's response in the top right first.

Then, instead of connecting here, Park cut here.

Was it a punishment for black's overplay?

Kim's severe moves often work against other pros.

But Park is very good at discovering the flaws in Kim's play.

And he punishes his opponents' overplays very well.

Even though this game was played in 2007, Park was already good at this.

After white's cut, the ko became critical.

Because of the ko, the game was becoming more complicated.

So making appropriate ko threats also became very important.

Would Park be able to punish Kim's severe moves?

Let's continue after the break.

Today's theme is 'natural enemies'.

It's interesting that these two players have formed such a relationship.

They'd been playing very fiercely so far.

Park punished Kim's overplay in the top left.

Since the first contest, Park had been ahead.

In response to Kim's strong moves, Park fought back.

Now the focus was on the number of ko threats.

White had several threats here.

I thought white would connect.

Park seemed to be confident about this ko.

The ko was so big. Of course black captured this stone.

Park played this hane as his first threat.

If white extends, he can connect along the first line.

Because this would threaten both his groups, Kim had to answer.

Kim made a threat here.

This cut produces more threats, but from a pro's perspective, this threat is unthinkable.

But wasn't the ko very big?

Yes, but since white had already taken profit, this threat would be enough now.

White can compromise like this.

Compared to this, it's a huge difference.

And the bottom side is also big. So black has to be careful with this kind of threat.

Therefore, Kim chose to play here.

After that, Park attached.

I think black had to respond.

To remove other ko threats, the best response is to connect here.

But if white recaptures, black doesn't have a proper threat.

If white captures this stone, black's group will be in danger.

This white group won't be enough.

In contrast, black's group looks large.

As a result, Kim chose to hane.

But, even with this move, he still couldn't win the ko.

Because white got more threats here.

Kim intended to find compensation for the ko elsewhere.

Yes, so he came out here.

After this exchange, Park finished the ko fight.

Instead of escaping, Kim connected.

He wanted to capture more stones.

If white tries to rescue this group, black will jump here.

Then this white group will be in trouble.

Even though black lost some points on the left, he can fight in the center.

This variation is scary for white.

So Park played here, to look after his group.

I'm not sure that white's completely captured black's group.

But this move also strengthened white's top group.

Kim jumped here, but this move would be safer, to capture white's group.

Because of black's influence in this area, it's very hard for white to save this group.

White can't make two eyes here.

But the problem is that white will approach here.

Black has to answer.

If white makes some points in this area, it's unfavorable for black.

I think the trade isn't bad for black.

But, due to the previous losses, it'll be hard for black to catch up.

A one line difference is larger than it looks.

Because black can gain a few more points, while white loses just as much.

In response, Park showed a wonderful move order.

This attachment looks special.

In response to this hane, he cut right away.

If black plays here, nothing happens.

But we can see that white encroaches on black's area a little.

Indeed, and there's still more aji.

White can secure his area anyway.

And he can aim at some other aji later.

Because of that, Kim just ataried.

However, it was a risky move.

With the other choice, the game will be long, even though black is behind at the moment.

In the actual game, Park ataried first.

After that, he played here.

Black had to atari, then white ataried and squeezed.

Even though it looks awkward, white can make two eyes by playing here.

Shape didn't matter at that moment. White's group was alive.

After this move, black couldn't capture this group.

Even this move helped the group live.

Of course Kim was aware of this variation.

But he was aiming at moving his group out like this.

What if black can't do anything here?

Then it will be a big loss, of course.

Because he already lost many points by giving two ponnukis to white.

At last, Kim moved his group out.

In order to look after his own group, Park haned.

In response, Kim crosscut.

They were both in byo-yomi at this stage.

And Kim misread here.

Black could escape by pushing.

White can't cut because black will capture his stones.

So black has no problem in getting out.

Then a center battle can be expected.

Since white has plenty of points, white's lead is clear.

But, depending on the outcome of the battle, Kim could've turned the tables.

However, he chose to cut instead.

He thought that white would have to atari and capture his stone.

This is a better sequence for black.

But Park played here.

It was such a strong response.

Black's exit was blocked off.

This move seems inevitable.

Kim persevered desperately.

Here's black's intention.

If white blocks here, black can cut.

Even if white comes out, his group will be in trouble.

Black can even atari in this case.

Instead of the hane, this empty triangle is a wonderful move!

The hane looks more normal.

But, in this case, the empty triangle is a great answer.

It makes miai of these two points.

If black comes out, white will cut.

Black has very few liberties.

Kim was planning to cut here at the beginning.

But, after this move, he couldn't connect because white would block.

So it was an empty triangle tesuji.

Park's reading was accurate, even during byo-yomi.

Because of the ugly shape, this move was hard to find.

Park punished Kim's mistakes accurately.

I don't understand why Kim wedged here.

After that, he ataried. So the wedge turned out to be a mistake.

He should have ataried without making that exchange.

It's still sente.

It seems like Kim got confused by the unexpected empty triangle.

To gain some time, Kim wedged here [the players were in byo-yomi now].

However, this atari was necessary for the battle on the left.

What was the meaning of that move?

Let's continue the fight without that exchange.

In the actual game, Kim wedged here.

After Park blocked here, the battle became more complicated.

What happens if white extends here?

First, black will push.

Both sides have three liberties.

White must come out here.

Black has to enclose white.

After that, he has to capture this stone, then white chokes black from the outside.

Because of the shortage of liberties, black can't atari.

Black dies.

Let's look at another variation.

If this atari is exchanged, the result is different.

When white ataris, black can connect here.

Now this stone blocks off white's escape.

It's a disaster for white.

Of course, Kim saw the sequence.

But because of the pressure of the byo-yomi, he wasted one stone.

If Kim succeeded in the center, he'd make up for his loss earlier, right?

But Park didn't follow this variation.

After he played his timesuji, Kim read many moves.

Finally, he wedged here.

If white extends, his group will die, as we saw.

So he blocked here instead.

Kim cut immediately.

This peep looks a bit peculiar.

If white connects, black pushes here.

Well, then white's dead.

So Park reduced black's liberties and another ko began.

Let's look at the actual progression.

After black captured this stone, the ko started.

There was a local ko threat here.

Did black have any threats?

No, he didn't have any proper threats.

Well, Kim could've made a threat here.

Without the bad exchange (timesuji from earlier), there would have been a trade.

Before this battle, black could've captured white's group.

And white was supposed to get some territory in the center anyway.

Compared to the previous variation, white's moyo is similar.

But black's gained many more points.

With this progression, the game would have become more complicated.

If had Park predicted that and connected here after black's atari, he'd still win the ko.

But this exchange is still more profitable for black.

Frankly, this answer is the proper move in this case.

Because the ko was quite predictable.

If white connects here, black gets a nice ko threat.

Therefore, this exchange was a pity for black.

As a result, Kim couldn't continue the ko.

So both players reached a compromise.

Since white got to block here, he acquired some points on the left.

In addition, he gained more profit at the top.

And he captured six stones there as well.

The combined profit was bigger than white's four stones in the center.

Despite black's nice move order, the result was fruitless.

It was unlucky for Kim.

Let me show you the precise sequence black should have played.

Due to the byo-yomi, Kim couldn't read accurately.

Back at this point, Kim needed to atari here.

Although it looks submissive, this move is correct, because of the upcoming ko fight.

Since white can't extend, he has to block here.

Instead of the peep, black should push here first.

White can't connect here, because he has too few liberties.

So he needs to come out, then black peeps.

A ko is inevitable.

Thanks to the previous exchange, black can capture one more stone.

It's a huge difference.

Without that exchange, white can attach here later.

In terms of thickness, it's quite different.

After the trade, black jumps here.

White didn't rescue his single stone, and also sacrificed one more stone.

Nevertheless, I'm not sure whether black is leading or not.

But, since there's a lot of open space, nobody can predict the result now.

This battle required delicate reading from both players.

It'd be extremely hard to read everything in one minute.

In the actual game, Kim lost one stone.

In addition, he captured only four stones.

In the end, this variations was worse than simply capturing white's group earlier on.

So white's lead became more obvious.

Let's look at the rest of the moves.

From the beginning, both players fought furiously.

We've seen many interesting moves and variations.

At the time when this game was played, Park was a new pro.

However, his reading was as good as Kim's.

This game would decide the winner of the Masters Cup.

Because of that, both players would be very nervous.

Kim was the vice captain of his team.

He was strong enough to win a youth championship.

For a young player like Park, a win at such a crucial stage would build his confidence.

His talent was already well known.

However, a victory would raise him up.

In general, pros improve with a lot of practice.

But winning an important match is also helpful.

Kim had to capture white's group, to win this game.

But that group had lots of liberties and escape routes.

So black couldn't build a large moyo at the bottom.

There were three ponnukis on the left.

So it was hard for black to separate white.

If Kim had captured one more stone in the center, the situation would have been different.

At last, Kim released white's group.

That means he couldn't cut it off.

Because of his weaknesses on the right.

206 moves, white (Park Junghwan 2p) wins by resignation

Park Junghwan won the Masters Cup by defeating Kim Jiseok.

Let's summarize the game briefly.

Because of white's thickness, it was impossible for black to build a large moyo at the bottom.

At this point, the game was practically over.

At the beginning, Park's overplay resulted in failure.

Park's powerful moves led to a ko, and white was successful.

Kim couldn't win the ko, but he came out towards the center and that was good.

But the last battle was complicated and both players were in byo-yomi.

Park's responses were accurate and flawless.

Kim's reading was nearly perfect.

However, he made two small mistakes.

And, eventually, they became the main cause of his loss.

Throughout the game, Kim had tried to complicate things.

Park's responses were correct, and he punished Kim's mistakes effectively.

That's typical of Park's style.

I think this is the sort of thing that leads to their relationship as natural enemies.

For Kim, he has to break the losing streak as soon as possible.

He's lost seven games in a row now. He needs to get over it.

We're looking forward to hearing from you.

Thank you!

Baduk TV English at GoGameGuru.com