Go Commentary: Cho Chikun vs Kobayashi Satoru – 4th Igo Masters Cup

This game is from the final of the 4th Igo Masters Cup, played between Cho Chikun 9p and Kobayashi Satoru 9p on July 12, 2014.

The Igo Masters Cup

Kobayashi Satoru Cho Chikun 4th Igo Masters 550x550 picture

Cho Chikun 9 dan and Kobayashi Satoru 9 dan (facing camera) at the 4th Igo Masters Cup. Photo: Inaba Yoshiko

The Igo Masters Cup is a tournament for veteran players over the age of 50.

There are preliminary matches, but former title holders don’t need to play in the preliminaries and can start in the main tournament.

Cho Chikun defeated Ishii Kunio 9p in the semifinal and Kobayashi Satoru defeated Kobayashi Koichi 9p.

Cho Chikun

Cho Chikun 9p won the 1st Igo Masters Cup by defeating Kobayashi Koichi 9p in 2011.

However, Cho was defeated by O Meien 9p in the following year.

Kobayashi Satoru 9p won the 3rd Cup by defeating Ishii Kunio 9p, in 2013, and he reached the final again this year.

Cho Chikun was born in Korea, in 1956, and he became a pro at the age of 11.

He held the record as the youngest player to turn pro in Japan until Fujisawa Rina 2p became a pro at the age of 10, in 2010. Fujisawa Rina is the granddaughter of Fujisawa Shuko 9p.

Cho took his first major title (the Pro Best Ten) in 1975, and he’s won 72 major titles in his career. It’s a record in Japan, and the former record holder was Sakata Eio 9p.

Cho also won two international titles – the 4th Fujitsu Cup in 1991, and the 8th Samsung Cup in 2003. In 2012, he achieved 1400 career wins, which was also a new record in Japan.

Cho’s style of play is very dynamic and passionate. He used to play extreme territorial games when he was in his 30s, and it was very exciting and fun to watch his games against Takemiya Masaki 9p (whose cosmic style was the complete opposite).

That period was the heyday of Japanese Go and the players back then were very colorful, with contrasting and unique styles.

Cho Chikun 4th Igo Masters t picture

Cho Chikun 9 dan receives a certificate from Yamashiro Hiroshi 9 dan. Photo: Akira Adachi

Kobayashi Satoru

Kobayashi Satoru Cho Chikun 4th Igo Masters Commentary 550x412 picture

Kobayashi Satoru 9 dan gives a post-game commentary. Photo: Akira Adachi

Kobayashi Satoru was born in 1959, and he became a pro in 1974. He won the 3rd IBM Cup in 1990, and it was his first major title.

He was in his prime from 1995~1997. He won the 19th Kisei, the 29th Gosei and the 42nd NHK Cup. He was ranked #1 in Japan that year.

In 1996, he won the 5th Ryusei and he was commended as the best player of the year.

In 1997, he was in the final of two international tournaments. He won 2nd place in the 8th Tongyang Securities Cup (he was defeated by Cho Hunhyun 9p), and he also came 2nd in the 2nd Samsung Cup (defeated by Lee Changho 9p).

In 2007, Kobayashi unsuccessfully challenged Yamashita Keigo in the 31st Kisei title match.

He also won the 3rd Igo Masters Cup in 2013 and it was the 10th title of his career.

Rules of the game

The time limit is 1 hour and 5 x 1 minute byo-yomi each and komi is 6.5 points.

Let’s have a look at the game!

Commented game record

Cho Chikun vs Kobayashi Satoru

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