Hong Maelgunsaem - Korean semipro, who lives in Japan
He tried to become pro, but every time he was 1-2 victories behind. He gave up
at the end of 90's and start playing in amateur tournaments. He won more than
20 events and was one of the strongest Korean amateurs for more than 10 years.
About 5 years ago he went to Japan and opened his own Go school. He sucessfully
played in Japanese tournaments and I don't think that there are any amateurs in
Japan, who are stronger than Hong, 7-dan.
He must be able to get a permission from the Nihon Kiin for attending Pro qualification
tournament soon. And I am sure, that in this case he can easily become a professional.
Hong has a very unusual playing style and even invented his own joseki-patterns.
He often plays for influence at the beginning.
His nickname on Dashn is "meglodon" and he has near 85% winning score as 7-dan.
About his opponent: There are several haoda+number players on Dashn. All of
them are different players, but they are from the same amateur Go club in Seoul,
called Chonmekhae (Nice-tesujis).
Haoda4 is probably the strongest master in haoda family. His name is
Kim Taedong he keeps 65% winning percentage on Dashn. Kim is the real Korean 6-dan, who won several local tournaments at the middle of
He was one of my teachers in Korea and in 1998 we played on 2-3 stones
handicap. Kim is very good at peaceful games and has a strong yose, but fighting is
not his strongest part.
In this game he took lot of profit in fuseki, but got killed in the center.