Jiang Weijie wins 24th Mingren

While Japan has already crowned its Meijin for 2011, the 39th Myeongin continues and 24th Mingren concluded this week, with Jiang Weijie 5p defeating Kong Jie 9p in five games.

Here’s where things stand as of December 1, 2011.

The 24th Mingren

Kong Jie (9 dan), in costume.

The last time we reported on China’s 24th Mingren, Jiang Weijie 5p was only one game away from retaining his Mingren title.

Jiang had thrown down the gauntlet to Kong Jie 9p with a 2-0 lead.

On November 28 and 30, 2011, while being made to wear some ridiculous looking costumes, Kong clawed back to take the third and fourth games to equal the score to 2 game all.

Jiang Weijie (5 dan), thoroughly enjoying being made to wear a costume.

Unfortunately for Kong, he couldn’t maintain his momentum and the youngster, Jiang, successfully defended the Mingren title.

Jiang Weijie defends the Mingren title for the first time.


The 39th Myeongin

In Korea, the 39th Myeongin finals are being played between defending champion Park Younghun 9p and Baek Hongseok 8p. In reaching the finals, Baek defeated none other than the Stone Buddha himself, Lee Changho 9p, 2-0.

Baek Hongseok (8 dan), putting up a good fight for the Myeongin title.

So far, 3 of the 5 games have been played and Park leads Baek 2-1. The last two games of the finals will be played in about a week’s time.

Park Younghun (9 dan), after fighting his way through the prelims, with everybody else, can he make it all the way to defend the Myeongin title?


Who do you think will win the Myeongin?

Who do you think will join Yamashita and Jiang in next year’s China-Japan-Korea Meijin playoff? Place your bets by commenting below :).

Game records

Game record: Jiang Weijie vs Kong Jie – Game 3


Download SGF File (Go Game Record)


Game record: Kong Jie vs Jiang Weijie – Game 5


Download SGF File (Go Game Record)


Game record: Baek Hongseok vs Park Younghun


Download SGF File (Go Game Record)


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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, I don’t think it’s nice to say the uniform Kong Jie and Jiang Weijie wore are “ridiculous looking”. Even though I may not know how it came about, I know they are the traditional uniforms of China and many people place great value on them. I know it was strange for them to be wearing that while playing Go, but perhaps there was another way to put it.

    • They are clearly ridiculous 🙂

      • You can think that way, but some people may find your comment offensive.

        • i agree… i dont think its proper to describe others’ culture as “ridiculous” in such a respectable (not to mention international) website…
          i think it is immature for a writer to say such things…

          • Lighten up.

          • Erick, I’m Chinese and I grew up in China. It’s not, as you put it, “others’ culture”, but my own. I’ve never seen anyone dressed like that other than on TV or at tourist attractions in China. Excepting the World Pair Go tournament, I’ve rarely seen Go players made to play in costume. I would think that wearing headdress would make it rather difficult to concentrate on your game!

            • Hi Jing, if you are Chinese and you grew up in China, all the more you shouldn’t insult your own culture by saying the costume is “ridiculous looking”. I can understand people from other countries taking it lightly, but how can you say that? I know maybe you didn’t mean it that way, but with such a strong word such as “ridiculous”, I really can’t take it in a positive way.

              Also, if you’ve never seen anyone dressed like that, you should look at some of the past year competitions. There were many competitions where professional players were dressed in traditional costumes. It’s funny, but I don’t consider them “ridiculous looking”

              • I don’t see the problem, I’d rather spend my energy on understanding the games presented. And yes, those head dresses are extremely funny, as it is quite difficult to understand their function, except being funny.

                • Yes, they are funny, they are extremely funny, and I also don’t understand their function.

                  But I still don’t consider them “ridiculous looking”.

                  I’m just talking about the word usage here. A bit too strong and too negative?

                  I mean, how often does the word “ridiculous” come out in a news report or article anyway?

                  And FYI, I spent lots of energy on understanding the games presented. :p

                  • Your comments are ridiculous.

                  • Working on the assumption that Trunter is correct the following seems to follow:

                    People can’t describe aspects of foreign cultures as ridiculous, that’s insensitive.

                    Nor should people describe elements of their own culture as ridiculous, that’s “negative”.

                    In short: the word ridiculous cannot be applied to culture, things that reflect culture, things that might have cultural significance, or people.

                    And yet the word exists and is used.

                    Strange, I wonder where the flaw in this chain of reasoning might lie…

                    • Well, the point is that what is possible not always is desirable, like being correct or being rude. There cultures differ on what is acceptable. Call an Arabic head dress ridiculous and you may be in serious trouble. The key word is respect. In my opinion it is possible to say that some aspects of a culture are funny or even rediculous without losing the respect for that same culture. In my opinion it should be possible to make some light hearted comments and to expect the assumption of the readers that the respect is still there. Life, and go, are difficult enough, some fun should be possible without being accused right away of disrespect. As I read here somewhere: lighten up.

                    • @tonyp
                      Well, words like the 4-letter F-word exist too, but do you see them being used in every situation possible? In news reports? News articles? On a well-known international site?

                      I wonder where your sense of reasoning is. Just because a word exists and is being used it’s alright to use it here?

                      Actually I’m taking it very lightly. Personally I’m not very offended. I just disagree with the idea that the word “ridiculous” is used here. And I don’t think you can respect someone you would deem as “ridiculous”.

                  • Byung Soo Lee says:

                    Ah! I understand where you are coming from now. You thought that gogameguru.com was a professional news organization. Think of it more like your friend on the internet who shares interesting go news with you. GGG is not BBC, CBS, or NHK. GGG does not present itself as a news reporting organization. It seems to market itself as a blog without professional journalistic aspirations…more like a knowledgeable friend than a professional. GGG may attempt to be free of biases, but there is no organizational structure to monitor that as there would be in a professional news outfit.

                    I would agree that it would be unprofessional for the BBC to have an anchor describe the costumes as “ridiculous” on the air waves, but the expectations are different here.

                    I think the author of the blog post has made it clear in this thread that what she found ridiculous was not the costume, but rather the contrast between the costume and the surroundings. I get the feeling that you are a reasonable person who can be satisfied with that answer.

                    Also, being an international site is sort of meaningless because almost every internet site can be accessed internationally. Moreover, this is not a well-known site by any means. It is well-known among go lovers (All go lovers are friends…) who can read English, but I doubt that the traffic here is enough for anyone to generate a living for even one person. Perhaps Mr. An gets a little publicity for his go school, but it is located in Australia. Someone who reads about it in Canada like me really won’t be enticed into joining. I do not even see any ads on this site. If there are any ads, I suspect that they are sparse.

                    I am glad that you are taking it more lightly than people initially suspected you were.

                    On a loosely related note, I am beginning to become a fan of this Jiang fellow. Part of that might have been seeing him in a “ridiculous” costume. That’s a positive, right?

                    • Yes, Trunter, expletives exist but here’s the difference, you can use the word ridiculous in church, in school, at work, in a political debate, in parliament, or even on a news program (as in, Mr X described Ms Y’s stance as ridiculous). You can’t use expletives in the same fashion because they are inherently unacceptable.

                      The word ‘ridiculous’ does not have the same intrinsically offensive overtones.

                    • @Bruno Thanks for the long comment. Yup I guess I expected too much from this website, and I thought it was a formal platform for the authors to provide news to us Go Lovers. Now it seems to be something that’s more casual and everyone can give their opinion freely. I guess I took the description too personally.

                      Though I still don’t know why Jing has not been responding to my comments.

                      @tonyp Yup I’m glad you know some words exist but are not used everywhere.

                    • Trunter, I replied to this thread earlier, though not directly to you. I actually have a full time job so unfortunately can’t reply to every single comment on this site 24 hours a day.

                      I think the root of the misunderstanding here is simply the interpretation of the word ‘ridiculous’.

                      First of all, please note that I only described the costumes (never the players) as ridiculous in the context they were worn.

                      Secondly, the word is commonly used in a fairly light hearted and flippant manner, at least in Australia, as well as the US and the UK as far as I understand. In fact, in modern usage, it’s basically synonymous with the words funny or laughable.

                      Maybe I’ve been living in Australia for too long – we tend not to take things too seriously down under. 🙂

                    • @trunter Who’s Bruno? He didn’t even say anything! 🙂

                    • @Jing Thanks for the clarification. Perhaps my knowledge of English is not good enough, I’ve always treated “ridiculous” as a strong word with heavy negative connotations. Hence I couldn’t accept the fact that it was being treated lightly here. Maybe I’ll start using the word more often now. (Well actually I already do :))

                      @Chris Oops, that was an obvious typo which I’m sure Byung will understand :p

    • Byung Soo Lee says:

      It seemed like a lighthearted comment to me. I wasn’t offended.

      Imagine if a championship match in chess was played by two players dressed like Henry VIII or wearing those inexplicably large Elizabethan collars. That would be funny and “ridiculous” as well. The ridiculousness of the picture has more to do with the context than the actual costumes. If we saw these two people dressed in this way in a historical drama series or a movie, we would not find it ridiculous because that is expected in those contexts. However, two people in 2011, surrounded by people who are dressed in modern style, in a location with modern decorations, the costumes (which also seem ill-fitted–in a tailoring sense) look…ridiculous.

      I do think that it is cool that they wore the ridiculous costumes. It shows that they are consummate professionals, who will do what the sponsors ask them to do.

      The costume might be slightly less ridiculous on Kong Jie, who is apparently a descendant of Confucius, but I love the contrast between Jiang’s eyeglasses and his costume. Two thumbs up. 🙂

      • I think you’ve pinpointed why the costume looks so out of place on Jiang. I hadn’t realized it was the glasses that did it.

        All you need to complete the picture is a smart phone or wrist watch on Jiang. 🙂

        • Haha, yeah, it’s like when you go to Jing’an temple in Shanghai and the monks are sitting in their traditional robes and hair style (lack of rather) on their scooters sending text messages. Ridiculous!

  2. If these costumes make Jing laugh, then they are ridiculous to her: such is the root of the word. One of the sources of laughter is the element of surprise, not being familiar with a certain custom. Combine the surprising aspect of the costume with the appropriately earnest attitude of the players and you get laughter. Those who know the costume and the custom, will see no reason for laughter.

    In a global world it is not easy to be constantly aware of potential cultural sensitivities. Being aware that your local costume may seem ridiculous to other people is also a sort of global growing up. Where’s your self respect if it depends on how other people react.

    As long as we remain open for differences in culture and costumes and willing to learn about them, it is ok I think to burst into laughter when we are first confronted with it.

    By the way, did you see those costumes?!

  3. it looks nice on Kong compared to jiang…

  4. That final game between Kong Jie and Jiang Weijie is quite a fighting game. Unless I misread a life and death status (I guess Black is alive at the left) I would say that the score is fairly close, that is, I would have expected the game to be continued for a while.

    By the way, cute hats, or head dresses or whatever, I wouldn’t dare to walk the streets with one here, but then, the traditional hats for men and women in the Netherlands look funny too.

    Kind regards,

  5. if you consider the costumes ridiculous, i can recommend a sample photogallery from world pair go championship: http://www.photoshare.ru/album242790.html – traditional clothing is cool. but sure it can look funny at the same time

  6. Byung Soo Lee says:

    The real question is why Jiang isn’t smiling while holding the trophy. He looks like a hostage…

    • Good question. As it is not his first title, and he obviously won the last game, he should be joyful. But maybe it is difficult to smile the whole time and the picture just was made at the wrong moment. Or maybe he just had an headache and was tired, I am told that I look difficult under those circumstances.

      • Byung Soo Lee says:

        Haha. You might be right.

        Other than the game reviews by Mr. An, the posts I enjoy the most here are usually ones that reveal professional go players to be human beings with regular human being concerns. Jiang’s face looks like he is experiencing one of those regular human being concerns right there. I couldn’t help but wonder what it was. Excellent photo set.