Hikaru Shindo - Suyong Hong Game

    Keywords: Opening, MiddleGame

This article is about a game played in the anime and manga series Hikaru no Go. The game is between Hikaru Shindo, the protagonist, and Suyong Hong, a Korean yeongusaeng (the Korean version of an insei).

On Naming

Many Asian countries, Japan included, place the person's family name before their given name, for example Go Seigen. Sensei's Library uses the Asian ordering exclusively (see Japanese name).

However, this page uses given name first, family name last ordering to be consistent with Hikaru no Go manga published in the United States, France and Germany. It is hoped that this choice will facilitate the use of Sensei's Library by individuals for whom reading the manga is their first exposure to Go.

The manga uses Western order naming with modern-day individuals and Japanese naming with historical figures. Perhaps the most prominent example of the historical figure naming is Murasaki Shikibu (Asian order) in place of Shikibu Murasaki (Western order). Murasaki Shikibu is the author of the famous Japanese novel The Tale of Genji. Chinese individuals (such as Lee Rinshin) have their names rendered in Asian order in the English-language version of Hikaru no Go (see Chinese name). Korean individuals (such as Suyong Hong) have their names rendered in Western order (See Korean name).

In this case, Hikaru's name is in the Western order (Shindo is the family name, Hikaru is the given name, and the name would be rendered Shindō Hikaru in Japanese). In the Revised Romanization system Suyong's name would be written Hong Su-yeong and in the McCune-Reischauer system it would be written Hong Su-yŏng. In many unofficial scanlations and publications, Suyong's name is written as Hon Suyon.


Watching episode 36 I've been quite impressed by the game, both Korean female 1 dan professionals, played 1995-02-03. Anime is better than the manga in this respect as it shows the dynamics of the fight. I made a record of the game using kifu from "Gorgeous characters guide".

maruseru: A GoGoD search reveals that it is Yun Yeong-seon (1d, White) vs Yi Cheong-weon (1d), played on 1995-02-03 in the Losers' Section Semi-final of the 2nd Women's Kuksu at the Hanguk Kiweon. White wins by 1.5 points.

The Game

Hikaru Shindo (White) vs. Suyong Hong (Black)  

Black 5: Suyong Hong follows the professional's advice to enter komoku against mokohazushi as soon as possible. What is sooner than immediate? :)

White 6: Hikaru knew perhaps the statistics presented by Dave. This is one of the two winning moves.

Hikaru Shindo (White) vs. Suyong Hong (Black). Moves 11-20  

White 14: Hikaru is fast to attack.

Black 15: Strange. This looks like black force white to make a good move.

Black 17: A small extension. usually people play a wider one. But this move happens frequently too.

Hikaru Shindo (White) vs. Suyong Hong (Black). Moves 21-30  

Black 27. This move has to be a preparation to the invasion on the left side. Otherwise it looks a little bit too defnsive.

White 28. This has to be a defence against the invasion.

White 30: Getting thick before a fight.

Hikaru Shindo (White) vs. Suyong Hong (Black). Moves 31-40  
Hikaru Shindo (White) vs. Suyong Hong (Black). Moves 41-50  
Hikaru Shindo (White) vs. Suyong Hong (Black). Moves 51-60  
Hikaru Shindo (White) vs. Suyong Hong (Black). Moves 61-70  
Hikaru Shindo (White) vs. Suyong Hong (Black). Moves 71-80  
Hikaru Shindo (White) vs. Suyong Hong (Black). Moves 81-90  
Hikaru Shindo (White) vs. Suyong Hong (Black). Moves 91-100  
Hikaru Shindo (White) vs. Suyong Hong (Black). Moves 101-110  

White 102 is the famous "bad hand".

I wonder if this is the only way to cut Black to pieces. Giving the opponent a ponnuki seems too much, but I have to agree that starting from here Shindo was enjoying an attacking game, getting points everywhere little by little while his opponent was more concerned with building two eyes.

BlueWyvern: I think that's one thing that makes this move so good. I'd assume quite a lot of people wouldn't even examine this continuation, thinking it to be bad because of the ponnuki.

togo: There seems to be an irrational fear of the ponnuki arround. This exchange is splendid exactly now: It finalizes win/destruction of ca. 15 point of territory, and there are still two weak groups to split-attack. W102 is also the shape-point and the miai-generating move rolled in one.
The speculation about reading ahead is just talk: No read-ahead is necessary to see the benefit of having two one-eyed groups with split-attack potential. The connection to the later dragon split is completely void: Black decides with move 125 to let his dragon be split, other plays would have been possible and reasonable.

tapir: I am completely unable to see the destruction/win of 15 points of territory here. Also, what are 15 points at this stage of the game? To me it looks like Black solidified his (or in reality her) weak group without any significant cost. If Black later would yield to W124 (what I would have done) White could still push Black around and Black wouldn't be able to destroy the upper side territory of White - I doubt this would be better for Black.

Hikaru Shindo (White) vs. Suyong Hong (Black). Moves 111-120  

During the next ten moves Hikaru had to wait patiently until Black finishes a set of forcing moves.

Hikaru Shindo (White) vs. Suyong Hong (Black). Moves 121-130  

Hikaru's attack starts.

Hikaru Shindo (White) vs. Suyong Hong (Black). Moves 131-140  

First White forces Black to build two eyes on the left getting thick in the process. After that White is ready for the 136 cut. Black's group at the top is not secure now and has to build two eyes, while White attacks a group in the center.

At the moves 136 and 138 the spectators and the opponent noticed that the stones in the center are perfectly placed to support the attack. Did he read this far when playing 102?

Hikaru Shindo (White) vs. Suyong Hong (Black). Moves 141-150  

White attacks Black's positions all over the board.

Hikaru Shindo (White) vs. Suyong Hong (Black). Moves 151-160  

Black 151 tries to expand the eye space for the group and White gets some profit in the center. Black then takes a large gote play with 155; and White uses sente to limit Black on the right.

See also:

Hikaru Shindo - Suyong Hong Game last edited by tapir on February 21, 2013 - 20:32
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