Cao Dayuan

    Keywords: People

Cao Dayuan (Co Dyun), also known as Cao Dajuan, Cchao Ta-jan and Tsao Dayuan (曹大元, 조대원, 차오다위안) is a Chinese professional, promoted to 9 dan in 1986. He was born in Shanghai, on 26 January 1962.

He was one of the top Chinese players in the 1980s and '90s.

The list of professional players' Go styles describes his thusly:

Solid fundamentals, thick, unhurried play, a little timid but not submissive, perhaps weak at attacking. Similar to Shao Zhenzhong.


In the following list, when one event is placed after another that took place in the same year, this does not mean that it took place later.

Go Game World claim that he was runner up in the 1st Tianyuan, but this is recorded in our article as having been Nie Weiping. They also say that he won the 6th Baisheng Wire Cup (no article) at an unknown date, and also the Postal Savings Cup (also with an article), again at an unknown time.

1962: Birth

1973: Began playing Go, at 11 years old [1]

1981: Runner up in the New Sports Cup
1981: Runner up in the Guoshou [2]
1982: Winner of the World Amateur Go Championship
1982: Made a professional 6p
1983: Promoted to 7p
1984: Promoted to 8p

1985: Runner up in the New Sports Cup (2nd time)
1985: Became a full time professional 1986: Promoted to 9p
1987: Winner of the New Sports Cup [3]
1987: Runner up in the CCTV Cup
1988: Runner up in the New Sports Cup (3rd time)
1988: Runner up the CCTV Cup (2nd time)

1990: Runner up in the New Sports Cup (4th time)
1991: Runner up in the Asian TV Cup
1991: Runner up in the CCTV Cup (3rd time)
1993: Runner up in the Mingren [4]
1994: Runner up in the Qiwang [5]
1994: Winner of the National Go Individual

1995: Quarterfinalist in the Fujitsu Cup
1996: Winner of the CCTV Cup
1996: Winner of the NEC Cup China
1996: Runner up in the Bawang
1998: Winner of the CCTV Cup (2nd time) 1999: Apparently given an honorary Korean 9p diploma from the KBA on 10 January. [7]

2002/-03: Quarterfinalist in the Samsung Cup


[1] Go Game World is our source for the age of 11, and might have just assumed it from the year, although with a birthday in January it is very likely anyway.

[2] Also sourced from Go Game World. The Guoshou tournament article doesn't list runners up. Since their claim that he was runner up in the first Tianyuan is incorrect (or misunderstood), this one should also be treated with some suspicion until corroborated.

[3] Following Wikipedia's date. Our New Sports Cup article gives 1986, claiming that two editions took place in 1985 and none in 1987.

[4] The second game of this match was featured in Hikaru no Go, in Chapter 135 of Volume 16, as the second encounter between Isumi and Ree Pin.

[5] Following our Qiwang article. Wikipedia gives this date as 1998.

[7] Suggested by the date being given on his KBA profile. The text is all in Korean, though.


His teacher was the famous Qiu Bairui, who trained many of China's strongest early professionals. Cao's own student was current top professional Fan Tingyu, as well as the less well known (but still 6p) Zhang Xuebin.

His wife is Yang Hui, one of the strongest female professionals of her day, six time winner of the National Women Individual.

The early opening armpit hit played by Cao against Zheng Hong in 1992 was a subject of discussion. His play against Yamashiro Hiroshi's unusual 3-5 10-3 enclosure five years earlier was also noted.

Some time in the 2000s, he authored (or at least put his name to) Middle-game Techniques, an instalment in the Master of Go series of Chinese language books.

In 2010, he was a member of Team Shandong, the winners of the Chinese A League. However, it appears that he was only a reserve, and was never called upon to play.

Before 2019, he played in an event with Cho Hunhyun, apparently celebrating thirty years of their rivalry. There is [ext] a clip of the nigiri; as the Ing rules were in force, Cao apparently exercised his right as winner of the nigiri to choose the white stones (whereas most rulesets would make him take Black).

Cao is discussed in Shen Guosun's book on Chinese professionals of the '60s, '70s and '80s, Weiqi Qili Yu Miaoshou or Beauty and the Beast.


[ext] 20201231天元围棋赛事直播第4届梦百合杯世界公开赛半决赛第1局:谢科VS范廷钰(曹大元、范蔚菁) -- 50m game with Chinese commentary

[ext] 程晓流 围棋迷你短对局 1996年中国天元战曹大元 vs 车泽武 -- 30m game with Chinese commentary

[ext] 曹大元(Cao Dayuan) 9p vs 聂卫平(Nie Weiping) 9p 第二届紫笋杯中日韩围棋元老赛决赛 (绝艺解说) -- game and variations

[ext] Cao Dayuan(1p) vs Kudo Norio(1p) - 1986-04-29 - komi: 5.5 -- a few minutes quick game playback

[ext] Cao Dayuan(8p) vs Sakata Eio(9p) - 1987-04-27 - komi: 5.5 -- a few minutes quick game playback

Further reading

Wikipedias: [ext] English [ext] Czech [ext] Chinese [ext] Japanese [ext] Korean

Game databases: [ext] Web2Go (654) [ext] Go4Go (455) [ext] Waltheri (432) [ext] GoDB (336) [ext] GoKifu (86)

[ext] Wikidata [ext] U-Go [ext] GoBase [ext] Go Game World [ext] Go Ratings

[ext] Perfect Weiqi Database (Chinese) [ext] Baidu (Chinese) [ext] Sina (Chinese)

[ext] Korean Baduk Association (Korean, with pics)

Cao Dayuan last edited by bugcat on March 27, 2022 - 03:40
RecentChanges · StartingPoints · About
Edit page ·Search · Related · Page info · Latest diff
[Welcome to Sensei's Library!]
Search position
Page history
Latest page diff
Partner sites:
Go Teaching Ladder
Login / Prefs
Sensei's Library