Sumire Nakamura started playing Go at the age of 3 and will switch to professional play next April, when she turns 10 years old.
9-year-old Sumire Nakamura, studying at an elementary school in Osaka, is an outstanding student of a special training program aimed at promoting the development of ancient Go, helping Japan compete with South Korea and China, The Guardian reported on January 7.
Sumire Nakamura took a photo with the famous Japanese Go player Yuta Iyama. Photo: Guardian
Sumire was born into a family to a father as a professional Go chess player, won a national title in 1998 and was also one of the trainees of the special training program aimed at nurturing the generation. Japan’s top player, helping this country compete in international tournaments. Shinya, Sumire’s father, encouraged me to participate in this intellectual competition.
Thanks to family orientation, Sumire started playing Go at the age of 3. I have been competing in student tournaments and have recently sharpened my competitiveness in Korea.
On April 1, when he turns 10, Sumire will enter the path of professional competition at the lowest level of the rankings. I will become the youngest professional Go player in Japan. Previously, this record was set 9 years ago by Rina Fujisawa when she was 11 years and 6 months old.
According to Reuters, Shinya, Sumire’s father, did not think he would play professionally so soon. “Sumire has earned these achievements thanks to his instructors and the people who have supported her,” he said.
With encouragement from the Japanese Go Association officials and his parents, Sumire overcame his initial shyness to share with the press. “I am very happy every time I win. I want to win a title as a junior high school student,” she said.
Go is a game that requires players to control territory on the board. The game originated in China more than 2,500 years ago and is estimated to have about 20 million players, mainly from East Asian countries.
Fans of Go in the country of cherry blossoms hope Sumire’s “extraordinary” appearance will spur the development of the game in Japan.