On May 29 the buses disgorged their cargo of go players and organizers into sunshine, and the staff took advantage of the good weather to set up a group photograph outside the Ecopa Arena. Inside, the Fukuroi Cultural Association welcomed the players with a display of flower arrangements in the second floor lobby.
On the first floor, the huge wall chart of pairings and results and the flags set up next to the go boards indicated that the unbeaten players from Korea and Hong Kong China would play each other while the unbeaten Chinese player took on the unbeaten Hungarian. The first of these two critical games ended fairly quickly: the Korean player, Shin-hwan Yoo, proved invincible again, beating Naisan Chan of Hong Kong China by 13.5 points. The other game lasted longer but ended similarly: Yuqing Hu of China defeated Csaba Mero of Hungary by 11.5 points.
Although Chan lost, the fifth round was a good one for all the other teen-aged players in the field. Kang-ting Yeh of Chinese Taipei, Thomas Debarre of France, and Viktor Lin of Austria kept within one game of the leader Yoo by defeating Wan-kao Lou of Macau. Ondrej Silt of Czechia, and Dimitriy Surin of Russia. Matej Zakanj of Croatia and Antti Tormanen of Finland notched their third wins by defeating Zoran Simeunovic of Bosnia and Herzegovina and Jostein Flood of Norway. The Debarre-Silt game was something of an upset, considering the age (16) of the French player, the strong past record of the Czech, who took eight place in this tournament in 2006, and the content of the game, featuring the unexpected demise of a large group.
Meanwhile, on the other side of the partition in the arena, an expeditionary force from Hokuto, a new city formed by the union of six towns in Yamanashi Prefecture, took on a local team from Fukuroi City in a friendship match. The local team proved to be good hosts; the visitors will take home both friendship and a decidedly winning record.
– James Davies