How to become a go pro

If you are living in in another country than China, Japan or Korea, how do you become a professional weiqi player? One way is to move to one of those countries and join their insei schools. There are a couple of western players who have done this. This is really hard work with a lot of competition against the other students and you have to be one of the best to make it to become a pro.

But now you have an easier way if you are foreigner of Japan. You can apply for a special foreigners test at the Kensai Ki-in. I believe this new test has been passed already. It is a quite simple procedure... You will play two games against two 1 dan pro players as black without komi.
  • If you manage to win both games, then you become a pro. 
  • If you lose both games then you will of course not become a pro, but you can try again next year.
  • If you win one of the games and lose the other, then you will get another chance by playing a third game against a 9 dan pro. If you win that game then you will become a pro.
You might have a good chance of playing against non active professionals, because the active ones are usually quite busy with their career with studies, travel and tournaments. This way makes it possible for even strong 6 dan players to pass the exam.

I think this is good news for all the strong western players. Also, with more strong players with pro status it will encourage regular players to study more when they have western pros to look up to. These western pros will be more like celebrities than the 6 dan and 7 dan we have now. So I encourage all 6 and 7 dan players that feel that they might have a chance to pass the test to go to Japan and try.

Now go and become a pro, every country needs one!


Mikey said...

hello! nice post! You wouldn't happen to have any supporting links?

Noruego said...

Hi! 6dan in what system? EGF, AGA, KGS or Japan amateur rank?

Boywing said...

6 dan is supposed to be one stone weaker than the weakest active pro. That is the level the (medium) 6 dans in Europe should hold. I guess it is similar at at that strength in AGA. KGS ranking system is broken and can not be taken into consideration. Japanese players can not even try to get pro in the easier way.