Although Chile is the farthest country from Beijing, it seems that distance doesn’t quench their enthusiasm to participate the 1st WMGS. Furthermore, they have built a relatively big delegation team consisting of 6 players for the Teams Men, 5 players for the Individual Men and 1 player for the Individual Open. The team leader, Herman Marcelo Dominguez Placencia is also the president of Chile Go Association.
Ranka: We are happy to see that more and more players from South America participate in international go tournaments. But the go communities in South America remain less known. Would you give us a little more information about Go in Chile?
Herman: Go was introduced to Chile in 1993/94. The friendship between Chile students and Japanese players in Santiago helped to create active go activities first in private places like bars and clubs. Mr. Jiro Maeda was very helpful and so was the IGF. In 2003, the “Ibero Americano” tournament was held in Santiago, attracting players from all over the American continent. This was a very crucial event for the Chile Go Association. The Go clubs were officially admitted that year. In 2004, the national federation was regenerated with the help of Mr. Sakamoto. Every 45 days we organize an internal championship. With the support of the state, Go spread soon from private rooms to public areas. The population of 1d players has increased from only 5 in 2002 to around 25 nowadays. In 2007, with the help of Mr Enda, a Japanese professional player, we organized a two-week Go festival in Santiago. Many strong Japanese amateurs participated too. For more information you can visit www.igochile.cl
Ranka: In the individual Men and Individual Open, Chile didn’t obtain very good results. What do you think about this?
Herman: Before we always sent the same players to participate in the international tournaments. This time we want to encourage young players to get experience and make improvement. Same as the bridge players, we had sponsorship from our government to cover the airfare. This is very helpful. Yes, our players didn’t get good results, but we are looking forward to the future.
Ranka: What is your impression of this WMSG?
Herman: We are all very enthusiastic. We have learned a lot here from this event.
Ranka: Have you made new friends?
Herman: Because of the language problem first we chatted with players from South America. But after a few days we have made friends with players from other countries, especially from east Europe.
Ranka: what else did you do in Beijing?
Herman: We went to a big bookstore and bought some go books. This evening(Oct.9th) the team went to visit the go center of Beijing. Yesterday we were invited by the Chile Embassy to a party with Angel Parra. He is a musician, son of Violeta Parra, a very famous musician in Chile too. We had a nice time there.
Ranka: would you like to add something more?
Herman: Well I’m delighted with this concept of joining all this mind games together. Players from different games respect each other in this WMSG. I met a woman playing draught from my country and we had a nice chat. I think Shogi and Othello should have their place here too.
Multi-sports event is more common for physical activities than for minds activities. But this has to change. We all hope that WMSG will be held again, in London maybe or in another country.
– Max and Chen