Top 8 Rules (2022)
This document is version 7 of the rules of the Irish Go Championship.
Changes to the previous set of rules are:
- Substitution of an online Qualification tournament for the (defunct) Ladder tournament.
- Change of the Top 8 tournament format from round-robin to double elimination.
- Specification of OGS as the default server for online games.
- Replacement of references to Japan points and travelling to the WAGC with references to WAGC points and representing Ireland respectively.
- Deletion of provisions relating to timetabling in relation to Irish Go Congress
- Other minor changes to wording and numbering.
Top 8 Tournament Rules
1.1 The Irish Championship is open to all Irish nationals, and to non-nationals who have been permanently resident in Ireland for at least two years.
1.2 All representatives from Ireland to the World Amateur Go Championship (WAGC) must be Irish citizens. Hence, a non-national participating in the Irish Championship, under rule 1.1., would have to take out Irish citizenship before being allowed to travel to the WAGC.
2.1 The four top finishers in the Top 8 from the previous year automatically receive an invitation to the Top 8.
2.2 The remaining places are filled from the Qualification tournament. The Qualification tournament takes the form of a double elimination tournament, to be played online.
2.3 Seeding for the Qualification tournament is in order of finishing position in the previous year’s Top 8 tournament, then by rating according to the European Go Federation database.
2.4 Games are played under the rules outlined in Section 3 below.
3. Top 8 Tournament
3.1 The Top 8 tournament takes the form of a double elimination tournament. Except in extraordinary circumstances, the Top 8 shall be played in person.
3.2 Seeding for the Top 8 is in order of finishing position in the previous year’s Top 8 (for the invited players), then finishing position in the Qualifying tournament (for those who advanced from the Qualifying tournament.)
3.3 Time limits for the games are 60 minutes each per game with Japanese overtime (byo-yomi) of five periods of 30 seconds.
3.4 Games are played without handicap, colours determined by nigiri.
3.5 Komi is set at 6.5 points for white.
3.6 All games are played according to the ruleset used by the International Go Federation’s WAGC rules.
3.7 The winners of the two elimination brackets play a best-of-three-game Final, with time limits of 90 minutes plus Japanese overtime (byo-yomi) of five periods of 60 seconds. These games may be played online.
3.8 Colour is chosen by nigiri in the first game of the Final, and reversed in the second. Colour is again chosen by nigiri if there is a third game.
3.9 The winner of this Final is declared the Irish Champion.
4. Playing Online
4.1 Online games shall be played on OGS. Optionally, subject to the agreement of both players, games may be played on another server.
4.2 Online games are played under the rules described in Section 3.
4.3 Both players should retain a record of such a game, in the event of a dispute arising.
5. World Amateur Go Championship (WAGC) points
5.1 The Irish Champion receives 10 WAGC points. The runner up receives seven points.
5.2 Players finishing from third to eighth place receive from six to one points respectively.
5.3 Points accumulate year-on-year until a player represents Ireland at the World Amateur Go Championship (see 5.5. below).
5.4 At the end of the Top 8 tournament, the player from the current year’s Top 8 tournament with the most accumulated points (who may not be the Irish Champion) is granted the opportunity to represent Ireland at the World Amateur Go Championship.
5.5 That player loses all of their points after representing Ireland, and starts the following year’s Top 8 tournament with zero points.
5.6 If two or more players are tied on the same number of points, the preference is for the player who has not previously represented Ireland at the WAGC.
5.7 If both have previously represented Ireland at the WAGC, then the player who earned the larger number of points in the most recent Top 8 receives the offer.
5.8 A player may decline the offer without penalty, in which case the opportunity is offered to the remaining participants in the most recent Top 8, in order of accumulated points. However, no player may represent Ireland in consecutive years.
5.9 In the event of no Top 8 player being eligible or available to play in the WAGC, the Rules Committee will select a player (using whatever criteria it deems appropriate) to represent Ireland in that year.
5.10 A player who has not participated in the Top 8 in five consecutive years loses all of their accumulated points.
6. Rules Committee
6.1 In all matters of interpretation of these rules or of issues not covered above the Irish Go Association Committee has the final decision.
6.2 In the event of a first-time entrant to the Top 8 becoming the Irish Champion, the Committee has the option (but not obligation) to offer the winner the opportunity to represent Ireland at the WAGC regardless of the accumulated points.