10 - Year - Old Pro 'go' Player Loses Debut

10-year-old pro 'Go' player loses debut

The youngest-ever Japanese professional "Go" player has lost her debut in the board game to an opponent who is six years older.

The Japan Go Association this month certified 10-year-old Sumire Nakamura as a professional Go player under a special quota for gifted young amateurs. The quota was created to nurture players who can rival champions in China and South Korea, where the game is also popular.

On Monday, Nakamura faced 16-year-old Ran Omori in her debut. Omori also became a professional player this month. Both have started from the lowest professional rank.

The game was watched by about 100 reporters from some 40 media outlets.

Being too short to comfortably sit on a chair prepared for players, Nakamura used a small stool on which to rest her feet. She quickly made her first move.

One hour was allotted to each player. Nakamura conceded defeat after the 174th move.

Nakamura became the youngest professional player to make her debut --19 months younger than a previous record of 11 years and eight months, made by triple-title holder Rina Fujisawa.