Dubbed the “Go Olympics,” Nguyen Si-bae was the gateway to South Korea’s leap from the fringes of the 1980s to world dominance.
South Korea has won the title six times, including the ninth edition, which was won by Shin Shin-seo.
China has won three times, while Japan and Taiwan have never been crowned champions.
When the tournament was founded, no one could have imagined that South Korea would win the most titles.
Taiwanese tycoon Ying Chang-chih created the world’s highest-paying go tournament in 1988 in hopes that his favorite Chinese go star, Ye Wei-ping, would win.
In the first edition of the tournament, 16 players were invited, and by nationality, there were five Chinese, five Japanese, three Taiwanese, two Korean, and one American.
However, when categorized by origin, Japanese players were the most numerous at 10, followed by Chinese players at 5, and only one Korean player, 9-dan Cho Hoon-hyun.
The championship was expected to be contested by Chinese and Japanese knights, and Korea was practically a bridesmaid.
However, Cho Hoon-hyun, the lone representative from Korea, made it all the way to the finals, defeating Nye Weiping in three games to two to take the title.
The confident Koreans went on to win the second, followed by Seo Bong-soo in the third, Yoo Chang-hyuk in the fourth, and Lee Chang-ho in the fifth to complete the feat of winning their fourth consecutive tournament.
In the fifth game, Chang Hao 9th dan, who later became president of the China Crisis Association, defeated Choi Cheol-han 9th dan to give China its first win, but Choi Cheol-han edged out Lee Chang-ho in the sixth game to take the title.
In the seventh and eighth tournaments, Park Jung-hwan reached the final for the second time in a row, but lost to Fan Ting-yu and Tang Wei-xing, respectively.
It was Shin Shin-seo who restored the pride of Korean Go after losing the title to China for the second time in a row.
Thanks to Shin’s performance, South Korea regained its dominance in the Ng Si-Bae after 14 years and won the title a record six times. 먹튀검증