World Amateur Go Championship
The World Amateur Go Championship (WAGC) is an event in which amateur players from around the world compete for the official world amateur title. The event is held every year, under the supervision of the International Go Federation.
In 2021, the WAGC takes place in Russia, the city of Vladivostok. Official website: https://www.wagc2020.org, the official facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/WorldAmateurGoChampionship2020/
The first WAGC was held in 1979 with 30 participants from 14 countries. In its early years, the WAGC used a knock-out system with a variable number of extra rounds for losing players, depending on how quickly they were knocked out. From 1984 onwards, the Swiss Pairing was used, initially with 7 rounds, and from 1986 with 8 rounds. In 2015 McMahon Pairing was introduced without telling the participants beforehand.
From 1979 until 2009, the event was always held in Japan, with the exception of 1987, when it was held in Beijing. In 2003, the WAGC was canceled due to the SARS outbreak, and Korea hosted a replacement event, the Incheon World Amateur Baduk Championship (IWABC). From 2010 onwards, the event started to be rotated among Japan, China and Korea, and other major countries.
Each participating national Go association sends one player, typically the amateur champion of the country concerned. The tournament has grown from 44 countries and territories in 1995 to 68 in 2007. In 2009, 70 countries were eligible to provide a participant, but only 66 competed (presumably because of financial, political or health reasons).
Current time limits are 60 minutes per player followed by byo-yomi of 30 seconds x 3 times.
Japan Airlines sponsored the WAGC from its inception until the 29th edition in 2008. Its sponsorship included air tickets for all the participants of the WAGC.
In 2006, Korea also started holding a world amateur championship. See Korea Prime Minister Cup World Baduk Championship.
The following is a list of winners to date, detailed results can be found at: http://kamyszyn.go.art.pl/wagc
|Edition||Year||Venue||Number of Players||Winner||Country||Link|
|30th||2009||Fukuroi||66||Yu Qing Hu||full result|
|29th||2008||Tokyo||68||Sung Bong Ha||full result|
|28th||2007||Tokyo||68||Shan Ziteng||full result|
|27th||2006||Nagasaki||68||Hiraoka Satoshi||full result IGF report|
|26th||2005||Aichi||65||Yu Qing Hu||full result|
|25th||2004||Kurashiki||64||Kang Wook Lee||full result|
|2003||Not held due to SARS outbreak, see IWABC|
|24th||2002||Hida Takayama||61||Fu Li||full result|
|23rd||2001||Miyazaki||56||Li Daichun||full result|
|22nd||2000||Sendai||56||Sakai Hideyuki||full result|
|21st||1999||Oita||55||Yu Chae-seong||full result pictures|
|20th||1998||Tokyo||50||Kim Ch'an-u||full result|
|19th||1997||Sapporo||46||Liu Jun||full result|
|18th||1996||Omachi||46||Liu Jun||full result|
|17th||1995||Tokyo||44||Hirata Hironori||full result|
|8th||1986||Tokyo||34||Chan Ka Yui|
|6th||1984||Tokyo||30||Wang Qun||full result|
|4th||1982||Tokyo||28||Cao Dayuan||full result|
- 31th Edition website
- 30th Edition website
- List of tournament locations and participating countries on Nihon Ki-in site
- International Go Federation coverage
The level of play at the WAGC is obviously quite high, and many of its amateur winners have gone on to become successful professionals (at some times, winning the WAGC could be rewarded with professional status):
- Nie Weiping (9-dan) 1979
- Shao Zhenzhong (9-dan) 1981
- Cao Dayuan (9-dan) 1982
- Ma Xiaochun (9-dan) 1983
- Wang Qun (8-dan) 1984
- Wang Jianhong (9-dan) 1985
- Chan Ka Yui (9-dan) 1986
- Zhang Wendong (9-dan) 1988
- Che Zewu (7-dan) 1989
- Chang Hao (9-dan) 1990
- Kim Ch'an-u (3-dan) 1998
- Yu Chae-seong (2-dan) 1999
- Sakai Hideyuki (8-dan) 2000
- Qiao Zhijian (3-dan) 2012
Even some participants who didn't win went professional (please complete if you find more)
- Yoo Chang-hyuk (9-dan) 1984 2nd place
- Seo Jung-hwi (1-dan?) 2005 4th place (he was not an insei in Korea so he was eligible to compete, but had actually passed the professional qualifying exams by the time he played in the WAGC).
- Ko Keun-t'ae (8-dan) 2001 4th place
- Hong Malk-eun Saem (2-dan) 2000 3rd place, 2002 and 2004 2nd place
- Tang Weixing (9-dan) 2006 2nd place
- Diana Koszegi (1-dan) 1999 9th place, 2001 15th place, 2004 12th place
- Sato Yohei (1-dan) 2010 8th place
- Chen Cheng-Hsun? (2-dan) 2012 3rd place (participated for Chinese Taipei in WAGC, but became a professional affiliated with the Zhongguo Qiyuan in mainland China).
- Ali Jabarin (1-dan) 2008 13th place
- Eric Lui (1-dan) 2011 3rd place
- Artem Kachanovskyj (1-dan) 2013 3rd place, 2015 7th place
- Ilya Shikshin (2-dan) 2013 4th place
- Pavol Lisy (2-dan) 2013 5th place
- Mateusz Surma (1-dan)
- Andrii Kravets (1-dan) 2016 4th place
Japanese and Korean Insei are not allowed to participate in the WAGC, but since the Chinese professional promotion system works differently, many future top professionals from China were officially amateurs and participated in the WAGC.