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Abe 7 dan’s New Move, Part I

From Kidō, January 1974

Classic Kidō Games, Part III

Abe 7 dan’s New Move

A Game to Enjoy

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Abe Yoshiteru 7 dan’s photograph from the 1972 Kidō Yearbook

A Buried Game

From newspaper go to television go. Recently, “Go to Show Others” have increasingly been showcased in the limelight.

In its essence, it has been debated whether go is something to show others or to play, and considering the passage of the generations, there is no option but to latch on to one of these truths.

However, sunlight striking must necessarily cast a shadow.

That which is unknown to others gets quietly buried, and that is what happens with Ōteai Ranking Tournament games. The regulations for the Ōteai provide for no recorder, and games records depend upon the winner setting down the moves. A big problem is that if a number of days pass, the details can be forgotten, which leads to trouble.

There are also many great games, regardless of whether rank promotion increases the effort expended, there is the opponent blocking the way, so it becomes a simple matter of economic theory, supply and demand.

Let’s take a look at one of these games in the Ōteai.

The Highlight of the Game

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In the lower right corner, a jōseki was played that has been popular recently. When Black attaches with 1, White A and B have previously been played, but considering the presence of White’s marked stone in the background, I thought that extending with White 2 was significant and played it.

The attachment of White C is perhaps also possible.

It is not my intention to recommend this move extending out, but the spotlight is on White 2 in this game, and I would like the reader to think about it.

1973, 16th Ōteai Ranking Tournament

White: Abe Yoshiteru 7 dan

Black: Takagi Shōichi 7 dan (no komi)

Analysis by Abe Yoshiteru

Figure 1: Games Without Komi

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Figure 1 (1-15)

In the Ōteai Ranking Tournament there is no komi. The handicap is controlled by way of adjustment of the weighting for wins [with wins by White given more points than for Black]. However, it cannot be denied that Black has the advantage.

For a game played in the Ōteai, the fact that there is no komi is one of the highlights. If Black just plays solidly, it is fine, but unless White plays actively and aggressively, there is no way to catch up.

Black plays 1 and 3 on the 3-3 points. White adopts the fuseki with 2 and 4.

In response to the two space pincer of White 6, the two space jump of Black 7 is par for the situation recently.

At one time the diagonal move of Black “a” was all the rage, but it is practically not seen anymore.

When Black makes the fencing-in move of 11, one feels like pushing through with White 12 and cutting with 14, considering that White 4 is in place in the background. Concerning the attachment of Black 15…

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Diagram 1

…White 1 and 3 in Diagram 1 are the model that Takagi san used in the 10 Dan title match against Sakata san last year.

In the Meijin title match, Rin Meijin played White 3 as the connection at 5, as everyone knows.

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Diagram 2

There are also examples of White 1 in Diagram 2 being played, but Black’s marked stone still has some potential [aji] left, which is bothersome.

I extended with White 16.

Figure 2: A New Move

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Figure 2 (16-47)

I suppose that it is all right to say that White 16, extending out, is a new move.

For me, too, this was uncharted territory.

Blocking with Black 17 is a natural move. At this point, the hane of White 18 is an essential move that is related to White’s extending at 16.

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Diagram 3

Should White take hold of Black’s stone with 1 in Diagram 3, Black would probably capture cleanly with 2, leaving little potential for problems [aji]. With this model, Black can play between White’s stones at A, which is a one-sided burden for White that is left here.

When White hanes at 18, Black cuts at 19 and although this is a small space here, fighting proceeds with the sequence through White 24, which is an unbranched path.

Well then, how should Black play 25? Takagi san seems to have been quite puzzled as to how to play now. In the end, Black presses from below with 25.

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Diagram 4

My feeling is that pressing above with Black 1 in Diagram 4 would be the standard procedure.

In that case, White would play atari with 2, and then take control of Black’s stone with 4. There are moves left in the corner, so there is no alternative for Black but to play at 5, and then White plays at 6 to build a large territorial framework. Black would next la to neutralize that.

Should this disposition of the stones take place, it is hardly possible for Black to aim at playing at A, so White has a thick and strong position. However, Black has taken solid profit, so this must above all be considered a reasonable result for both sides.

To take this variation as the definitive version of this jōseki is a bit premature, and I cannot pass that judgment myself. But there is no reason not to predict that this variation will be used in the future.

It may be understood that Takagi san disliked this variation and therefore played the variation with Black 25, but with this move the stones one way or another end up in a low stance. That can be said to be the negative point of this way of play.

Pausing to play the atari of White 26 to fix the shape is natural (because there is a ladder relationship that will be explained later). That is because simply extending with White 28 would incur Black’s blocking at 32, and White would end up being forced [kikashi].

Black makes the forcing move [kikashi] of 29, then the atari of Black 31 and connection of 33. However, it may be thought that playing Black 33 to capture at “a” would be a thick and strong way of playing. And yet, there is the nuance that when Black plays as in the figure there are different options for White in the game.

The moves through Black 33 are the reverberations from the new move.

Black’s profit and White’s outward influence.

When it comes to which side is better, there are pros and cons, and in the final analysis it depends on the following play. Perhaps this can be called a reasonable result.

A lull has come in the game. White plays at 34, developing the upper side, which allows Black to connect underneath with 35. White expands the territorial framework with 36 and 38, but something else must also be taken into consideration.

In other words, to punish Black for making the move at 33…

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Diagram 5 Black 2 and 4 elsewhere

…the opinion was expressed that White separate Black’s position with 1 in Diagram 5.

In this position, the fact is that blocking with White 3 is a forcing move [kikashi], and when thinking about the territorial framework on the right side it is greatly attractive. Should Black then play elsewhere, White plays atari at 5, which makes the technique [suji] of White 7 possible.

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Diagram 6

Next, if Black prevents a kō fight with 1 in Diagram 6, White replies with 2. Black then has no choice but to play at 3 to prevent White from making two eyes, and play proceeds with White 4 and the following. Black then captures White’s two stones, White recaptures, Black plays atari against that stone and the situation turns into a one move approach move kō. This is highly unpleasant. After the game, Takagi san stated that it was disagreeable to him to incur White’s jump of 1 in Diagram 5.

In any event, by having Black connect underneath with 35 to gain a secure position, White is dissatisfied.

The fencing-in move of White 40 is an overplay. It is not too much to call it the losing move.

Unless White plays the diagonal move at “b,” locking down the large territorial framework, there is no way to control the situation. No matter how much White expands the structure of White’s game, its forces are too thin and weak. There is the fear that at any moment a counterattack will be mounted by Black.

Black challenges White by playing 41 and 43 in good form. And then White 46 is also funny. White “c” is the only move. Once Black swoops around and bears down on White with 47, it is no good.

[Game Record]

To be continued next week.

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