Monday, December 26, 2005

Favorite Player

Thanks to jwaytogo, I have been watching a lot of pro games live this year. Even although it sometimes seems slow (especially the two days matches) it is really interesting to see the game develop and to discuss variations and possibilities before they are played. Of course, often proven wrong by the pros, who play something totally unexpected instead.

For a while, my favorite player was Yamashita Keigo, after he played jabberwocks in the Oza challengers final against Nakaonoda Tomomi (Aug 2005). This was another game we watched live. I remember watching the start of the game, and going out for dinner, and there were only a few moves played during the whole time we took to eat our meals. Luckily there was an intermittent wireless connection in the restaurant, so we didn't have to totally miss out on the match while eating :)

I still like Yamashita, but after seeing the Samsung semi finals, Luo Xihe is at the top of my list of favorites. All three of his games against Choi Cheolhan were good, but the last one was just brilliant. Every single of those three games involved a dragon. Choi and Luo both had won one game, so the third game was going to be the deciding match. Luo ended up with yet another dragon, and things looked pretty bleak for a while. Suddenly, a triple ko appeared, very rare, but this would give him a draw instead of a loss, so we all were happy for him. Nobody expected him to just give up this triple ko and his huge dragon though, and find compensation elsewhere. Adequate compensation even. He ended up winning the match by 7.5 points. Amazing! posted a story about it.

I am definitely going to root for Luo Xihe in the Samsung finals. He will play Lee Changho, so it's not going to be easy.

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