Mok Jinseok wins 1st title in 15 years – 20th GS Caltex Cup

Mok Jinseok 9p won the 20th Caltex Cup on April 2, 2015, defeating Choi Cheolhan 9p with a 3-1 score.

The final was played from March 30 to April 2 in Seoul, Korea.

Mok Jinseok 9 dan (left) and Choi Cheolhan 9 dan at the 20th GS Caltex Cup.

Mok Jinseok 9 dan (left) and Choi Cheolhan 9 dan at the 20th GS Caltex Cup.

This was Mok Jinseok’s 2nd career title. He also won the 19th KBS Cup in the year 2000, defeating Lee Changho 9p.

Choi Cheolhan won game 1, but Mok won the next three games to take the best of five match.

Mok Jinseok’s 2nd title

Mok Jinseok 9 dan at the 20th GS Caltex Cup.

Mok Jinseok 9 dan at the 20th GS Caltex Cup.

Mok’s nickname is boy wonder, because he defeated Nie Weiping in the 2nd China Korea Lotte Cup in 1995 when he was just 15 years old.

His fans still like to call him by that name even though he’s in his mid 30s now.

In the late 90s, he was a rising star and many Korean baduk fans thought that he would take the torch from Lee Changho.

As many people expected, he won the 19th KBS Cup when he was 20, but he never took another title afterwards, until now.

Mok won 2nd place at the 13th Asian TV Cup in 2001, and he was in the final of 8th LG Cup, but he was defeated by Lee Changho in 2004.

In 2007, he broke two Korean records for the most games played and the most won. He had 93 wins and 29 loses, and it seemed like that would be his career high for sure.

However, most of his games were played in the preliminary matches and main draws of tournaments, so he didn’t earn any titles even though his record was extraordinary.

The eternal runner up

In 2008, Mok played in the final of three domestic tournaments, since he’d done very well in 2007.

However, he was defeated by Park Younghun 9p in the 9th Maxim Cup final, and he also lost to Lee Changho in the 3rd Siptan (Korean Judan) and the 5th Electric Land Cup, so he didn’t win any titles.

In 2009, he was in the 52nd Kuksu final, but was defeated by Lee Sedol 9p. He also reached the final of the 4th Olleh KT Cup, but was defeated by Kim Jiseok 9p in 2013.

In 2015, he became the new coach of the Korean national team, and he started to study Go very hard again with other top pros.

And eventually, he took his second title 15 years later. A feat which is rarely seen in the Go world.

Choi Cheolhan’s defeat

Choi Cheolhan 9 dan at the 20th GS Caltex Cup.

Choi Cheolhan 9 dan at the 20th GS Caltex Cup.

On the other hand, Choi Cheolhan has now taken 2nd place in the GS Caltex Cup two years running.

He was defeated 3-0 by Kim Jiseok last year and he lost to Mok this year. Choi’s games in this final weren’t in keeping with his typical style of play.

His play was neither as strong nor powerful as it normally is. His game in the semifinals against Kim Jiseok was excellent, but somehow he didn’t show his strength in the final.

The head to head record between Mok and Choi before this final was 19-7 in Choi’s favor, and even their last 10 games together were 9-1 for Choi.

Because of that, most Korean fans expected that Choi would win the title fairly easily, but Mok showed his wonderful power in this match.

Mok maintained his concentration in this lightning tournament (10 minutes, with 3 x 40 seconds byo-yomi) and he defeated his natural enemy.

Mok at the post game interview

Mok Jinseok 9 dan busted into tears after winning the final game.

Mok Jinseok 9 dan busted into tears after winning the final game.

When the last game was over, Mok burst into tears as his emotions got the better of him.

It took him some time to calm down and give a post game interview.

In the interview, he said that he tried to empty his mind and only focus on the games, and not to worry about winning or losing.

He couldn’t describe how happy he was, and he thanked his family and everyone who rooted for him.

I was so moved when I was watching the interview, and I feel proud of him and so happy for him too.

Game records

Mok Jinseok vs Choi Cheolhan – Game 1

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Choi Cheolhan vs Mok Jinseok – Game 2

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Mok Jinseok vs Choi Cheolhan – Game 3

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Choi Cheolhan vs Mok Jinseok – Game 4

gliftWidget = glift.create({“divId”:”glift_display4″,”sgf”:”https:\/\/gogameguru.com\/i\/2015\/04\/Choi-Cheolhan-vs-Mok-Jinseok-20150402.sgf”,”display”:{“theme”:”DEPTH”,”goBoardBackground”:”https:\/\/gogameguru.com\/i\/glift\/purty_wood.jpg”,”drawBoardCoords”:”1″}});

 

Our Go game diagrams and Go problems require JavaScript to work.

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