Fujisawa Rina

    Keywords: Culture & History, Go term

Fujisawa Rina's Nihon Ki-in photo (2010)

Fujisawa Rina (藤沢里菜) is a Japanese professional 7-dan female go player, former prodigy, and currently (Jan 2024) the #2 female player in Japan. She has won the second most Women's titles—23, exceeded only by Xie Yimin's 27.

According to the [ext] 2024-01-02 rating update, Fujisawa is the #2 ranked female player in Japan (behind only Ueno Asami), #40 overall in Japan, #9 ranked female and #252 overall in the world. In the rating lists of [ext] 2022-01-01 and [ext] 2021-01-01, she was #4 female in the world and #1 female in Japan.

Rina was born 1998-09-18 in Tokyo, and passed a pro exam in 2010 while in the fifth grade of elementary school. On April 1st 2010, she received her professional diploma at the age of 11 years and 6 months, making her then the youngest person in Japan to become a professional [1].

The previous record was held by Cho Chikun who became a professional when he was 11 years 9 months old. Cho played a game with her to mark the occasion, and in a video commentary of her game with Rin Kanketsu in the NHK Cup, 2015, Cho said that she had a great future and could play any style.[ext] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J-Y1p2ZQDq0 Rina's record of youngest professional stood for 9 years until Nakamura Sumire broke it aged 10 years and 1 month in April 2019.

Fujisawa began learning Go at the age of 6 and studied under the tutelage of Hong Malk-eun Saem. She was promoted 2 dan in 2013-02-14 (30 wins as 1 dan).

Rina started 2014 with 9 consecutive wins (as of 2014-02-15), extending her winning streak to 9 games.

Title matches


In 2014, she was part of Japan team at the 4th Huang Longshi Shuang Deng Cup. She won against Song Ronghui in the fourth game, but lost to Kim Hye-min in the fifth game. In the same year, she became the youngest Female Honinbo in Go history by defeating Mukai Chiaki (title holder) 3–0 in the 33rd title match, at the age of 16 years and 1 month old. She lost the title to Xie Yimin 3–2 the next year, then regained it 3–1 the following year. Fujisawa has now won the Female Honinbo title six times.

She was the winner of the 1st Aidu Chuo Hospital Cup (2014), beating Okuda Aya by resignation.

In 2016, Fujisawa won the 2nd Ibero-Japan Cup?, an U-18 tournament open to both sexes, the second female winner after Xie Yimin.

In 2017, she probably became the strongest female player in Japan. In March, Fujisawa won the Female Meijin, beating title-holder Xie Yimin 2–0, ending her streak of 9 wins in a row. In June, she beat the same opponent 2–1 to win the Aidu Chuo Hospital Cup (Female Tachiaoi Cup), and next month she beat Xie again to win the Senko Cup.

In 2018, Fujisawa defended her Female Meijin by beating Yashiro Kumiko 2–0, and her Aidu Chuo Hospital Cup title by defeating Xie Yimin 2-1.


Fujisawa won the Female Honinbo three times in a row: 2020–2022. She continued winning the Women's Meijin five times in a row, 2017–2022, making her an Honorary Female Meijin. But she lost the title in 2023 to Ueno Asami, a pupil of Rina's father Fujisawa Kazunari. She also made it five-in-a-row in the Aidu Chuo Hospital Cup, 2016–2021, losing the title in 2022, again to Ueno Asami. But Fujisawa beat Ueno to win the 2021 Female Strongest. Ueno Asami is now a serious rival to Fujisawa as Japan's top active female player, and has even overtaken her on the rating list.

Fujisawa became the second female winner of the Hiroshima Arumi Cup, after Xie Yimin 14 years previously. The next two years were won by her rival Ueno Asami.

Fujisawa's accuracy in yose was strong enough to receive the nickname “Rina Zero”, a play on Leela Zero (Japanese: リーラ・ゼロ “Rīra Zero”).[ext] Fujisawa's strength in the final stage is “Rina Zero”. Women's Go regains Honinbo, nicknamed for accuracy of Yose, Asahi Shimbun Digital, 30 Nov 2020

Victories over all-time greats

(Based on [ext] Fujisawa Rina, Go Ratings and game list), as of 28 Feb 2024

In official games since 2010, Fujisawa has taken games off some of the greatest of a previous generation, e.g.:

Fujisawa has beaten some of the greatest female players of older generations. E.g. on 10 Feb 2011, she beat Ogawa Tomoko (aged 12 and 59), and on 13 Jan 2013, she beat Sugiuchi Kazuko (aged 14 and 85!).

Head-to-head scores against current female rivals



Promotion record

  • 2 dan in 2015
  • 3 dan in 2017
  • 4 dan in 2020
  • 5 dan in 2021
  • 6 dan in 2022
  • 7 dan in 2023

Career record:

  • 2010: 13 games, 6-7
  • 2011: 23 games, 8-15
  • 2012: 26 games, 13-13
  • 2013: 36 games, 23-13
  • 2014: 58 games, 42-16

[1] : Nihon Ki-in professional selection slot for female players used to have a restriction: the player must be 15 years or older. This restriction was abolished in 2003, and Fujisawa became the first professional for whom the new rules applied.


  • 藤沢里菜実戦集 ―女流四冠への軌跡― (Fujisawa Rina match collection - path to 4 women's crowns). Includes self-commentary, commentary by Takao Shinji, pictures, and articles.


A pre-game [ext] YouTube link and post-game [ext] YouTube link interviews (both her and Oh Yujin before and after 2023 Korean Women Baduk Team's evaluational matches against invited players from Japan and China in August 2023.


fujisawa rina female meijin 2021 (Image credit: 0)
fujisawa rina female meijin 2021 (Image credit: Foxwq.com)

fujisawa rina li he asian games 2023 (Image credit: 3)
fujisawa rina li he asian games 2023 (Image credit: Foxwq.com)

Fujisawa Rina posing with the new star Nakamura Sumire during the latter's early years(Image credit: Fujisawa Rina Twitter)
Fujisawa Rina posing with the new star Nakamura Sumire during the latter's early years.

Five leading female Japanese go professionals at round table, 2023 (Image credit: Fujisawa Rina Twitter)
From bottom left, clockwise: Ueno Asami, Nakamura Sumire, Fujisawa Rina, Nyu Eiko, and Ueno Risa (Image credit: Fujisawa Rina Twitter)

Five leading female Japanese go professionals lining up, 2023 (Image credit: Fujisawa Rina Twitter)
From back to front of the line: Nyu Eiko, Nakamura Sumire, Ueno Risa, Fujisawa Rina, and Ueno Asami (2023) (Image credit: Fujisawa Rina Twitter)

Four leading female Japanese go professionals on a bus, 2023 (Image credit: Fujisawa Rina Twitter)
Front, left to right: Jo Bun'en, Fujisawa Rina, Ueno Asami, and Ueno Risa (2023) (Image credit: Fujisawa Rina Twitter)

yu zhiying ueno risa asian games 2023 (Image credit: nikkansports.com)
Ueno Asami selfie with (L→R) Mukai Chiaki, Ueno Risa, Nakamura Sumire, and Fujisawa Rina, Tachioi Cup, 2023 (Image credit: nikkansports.com

Fujisawa Rina last edited by Jono64a on February 29, 2024 - 20:46
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