Handicap Go on the Side: Shiratori Vs Smythe




White: Shiratori Sumiko 5p
Black: Neville Smythe 3d

Commentary by Michael Redmond 9p. (Click on the diagram to launch the game viewer. SGF file available here.)

Many professional players have come to Fukuroi to play instructional games during the World Amateur Go Championship, but there is one who stands out: Ms Sumiko Shiratori, 5-dan. Now retired (she is over 90), she is a walking storehouse of tales of go in prewar Japan and China. At one time she was living in Shanghai, teaching go to the Japanese business community there, with whom she was immensely popular. Among her more recent pupils is Yuki Shigeno, 2-dan, another woman with considerable experience in teaching go overseas. During the first round on May 27, Shiratori-sensei played simultaneous handicap games, taking on three opponents at a time, and captivating every one of them with a combination of praise, charm and good humor. To some opponents she was all kindness, giving hints, helping them to kill her own stones, sometimes allowing all her groups to die to demonstrate how it could be done. During the second round, however, she settled down for a serious 5-stone game with Neville Smythe, the IGF director from Australia, and demonstrated that she can still be a formidable opponent.

Shiratori Sumiko

Shiratori Sumiko

Black 24. So far, Black has made no bad moves.
Black 26. Black could have captured the two white stones by playing a hane at 198.
Black 42. Good. White should have played here with 41.
Black 50. Black should have invaded at 105.
Black 54. Black should capture the white stone, so that White 55 would not be sente.
Black 58. Approaches a white group that is now strong. Black should try to make territory on the right side by attacking the white group in the center, so an extension in the other direction, down the right side, would have been better.
Black 66. Protects the cutting point above 67, but Black 71, taking profit on the left side, would be better. White would be forced to play 66 to live, and then Black could defend at 67.
White 67. Becomes a gift to Black. White 115 would have been better.
Black 74. An invasion at the point just below 149, for example, would have been better.
Black 86. Black 89 is better.
Black 92. Black should play more aggressively by invading either the right side of the lower side.
Black 96. An underplay. Black could invade the right side on the fifth line. With a weak group in the center, White would find it difficult to counter this invasion.
Black 108.
Black should play more aggressively by bumping at 149 to keep White separated.
Black 112. Big, but first Black should play 115 to gain profit in sente while forcing White to live with minimal territory.
Black 124. Better is Black 125, followed by White 168 and then Black 124.
Black 134. Black should play 135 first.
Black 142. Would have been more effective if played before Black 138, but the biggest move is just above 177.
Black 150. Here too, the move just above 177 would have been better.
Black 162. Not as big as it looks. Black should give atari at 213, then clamp above 177.
Black 190. A minor blunder. Black should block at 208.
Black 200. Black should play 201 in sente, then cut at 215, then play at the right of 203. If Black had seen this move and had not blundered at 190, he might still have won.
Black 218. This move should have been made diagonally, one line higher.
Black 202. An unusual way to connect. Other forms of connection would give White fewer ko threats.
White 255. White wins by 6 points.

- Ranka

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