Irish Go History 1990

Taken from the 1991 Ranka Yearbook

Ireland is the newest member of the IGF, having been accepted in 1990. While there have been scattered individuals playing Go for over ten years, it wasn’t until 1989 that any attempt was made to form real clubs and organize an Irish Go Association.

The impetus for this organization came from the arrival in Dublin of Isao Toshima, a 2-dan from Japan who was very keen to teach new players and generate a strong club. Contact was made with others who were already playing, and chess clubs and game conventions provided opportunities to heighten awareness of the game.

The first Irish Go Championship (Irish Open) was held in March 1990 and was won by Isao Toshima. The Irish Champion, Noel Mitchell 1-kyu, represented the country in the 12th WAGC. Other events have included demonstrations and teaching sessions at gaming conventions (one of which was run by Francis Roads, then 3-dan, from the U.K.), a lightning tournament, some inter-club competitions and a two stage match against the Isle of Man which Ireland lost 3-5. The occasional visit from foreigners passing through usually sparks a lot of interest.

The number of players in Ireland is around 50, but half of these are beginners. We are only beginning the slow and arduous task of building up the number of dedicated players, but we hope Ireland will have some of dan strength in the near future.
(Report from Noel Mitchell)

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