Two Korean Baduk professionals will visit UK 5th-10th March 2007, following a hectic European tour. The two players are An YoungKil (5p), and Lee JungWoo (6p). Both players are in their mid 20s, have been professionals for about 10 years, and are keen to make contact with Go players in UK. Starting in the Spring, Mr An is planning to live in UK for a year, both to study the English language, and to continue with his work as a Baduk professional.
During most of their tour of UK they will be accompanied by Prof Hahn Sang-Dae. Prof Hahn visited the UK last year with 2 other Baduk professionals.
On Tuesday 6th March 2007, they will visit Oxford, and will play simultaneous games. During the the rest of their 5-10 March 2007 UK visit they hope to meet with other Go players in the London/ South East area. All arrangements are co-ordinated via Prof PARK Hwa-Seo — email: "hshahn AT gmail.com" (make the obvious change!). Prof Park is in Korea, and she has full command of the English language.
If you would like some more background information, then please contact Harry Fearnley: Tel 01865 248775 (home), 01865 273928 (work) 07801 373749 (mobile -- NO MESSAGES!), or send him an email at "koreans2007 AT goban.demon.co.uk" (make the obvious change!)
An became a professional in Aug 1997, when 16 years old, and is now 5p. His Baduk teacher is Heo Jang Hoe (허장회), 9P. He has only recently completed 2 years of military service. Because of his absence on military service, he does not have a current rank with the Baduk KiWon.
He has had some notable victories: beating Lee Se Dol (이세돌), at that time 3P, in 2 stages of the 35th WangWi Cup -- Feb, 2001, and July 2001. Incidentally, Lee SeDol (sometimes known by westerners as Yi SeTol) continues to show his strength, and is thought by some to be currently Korea's strongest player. He did well (placed in top 24) in the 8th LG Cup (June, 2003), and was a finalist in 8th SK Rookies Cup, in September 2004, losing to Park Jung Sang (박정상), 5P.
Lee became a professional in Aug 1996, when only 14 years old, and was recently promoted to 6p. His Baduk teacher is also Heo Jang Hoe (허장회), 9P. His ranking within the Korean Baduk KiWon, is 35th (Jan 2007).
Some notable recent results include victories: beating Park Young Hun (박영훈), 9P on 6th Apr 2005, in the 39th Wang-wi cup; beating Choi Chul Han (최철한), 9P, on 15th Apr 2005, in the first Masters Cup. In Aug, 2005, he reached the top 32 in the 10th Samsung Cup.
Prof Hahn SangDae is not only a strong amateur Go-player, but is also tireless in promoting the game in Korea, and abroad — largely through his involvement with both the Korean Amateur Baduk Association (KABA), and the Department of Baduk Studies, at Myongi University, Seoul, Korea. Myongi University was the first university to have a degree-level course in Go/Baduk/WeiQi, and also has postgraduate students.
He is Chair of the organizing committee for the International Team Baduk Competition, and was the Chair for the International Conference on Baduk in 2001 (Seoul, Korea), 2003 (St Petersburg, Russia), and 2005 (Seoul, Korea). He has played a central role in informing the rest of the world about the notable burgeoning of Go/Baduk in Korea in the last 20 years — this has included work with the KABA to create an accreditation system of International Baduk Instructors. Recently he has had close involvement with the worldwide Korean Ambassador's Cup.