The 3-day first Perak Weiqi Open Championship kicked off on Dec 2nd at Tow Boh Keong Hall in Ipoh. Organised by NSS Centre and sponsored by the Perak State Government, the objective of the tournament was to promote the Chinese chess to the masses.
According to the President of Malaysia Weiqi Association Mr. Tiong Kee Soon, there are fewer than 5000 players in Malaysia, despite having established the association back in 2003. Therefore, a lot more effort has to be put in to encourage people to pick up the game.
Weiqi originated from China 3,000 years ago but was subsequently popularised by the Japanese. The game then spread to Korea and again, returned to China, making these three countries the strongest exponents in the game.
In Malaysia, the highest level attained, thus far, by two players is 5 Dan out of the top level of 9 Dan. This competition managed to attract players of 4 Dan, which shows how strong the field was.
On the part of the Perak State Government, being represented by Mr. Chin Sou Kheong from the Perak Non-Islamic Affairs Unit, from 2015 onwards, selected teachers from Chinese primary schools in the state will be trained in Weiqi under a programme drawn up by Ipoh Weiqi Enterprise, to enable Weiqi clubs to be set up in these Chinese primary schools.
Weiqi, also known as Go, is an abstract strategy board game played on a grid of black lines by placing black or white stones on the intersections of the lines. The winner will be the one who can amass as vast an area of the board as possible, surrounding (or encircling) the opponent with each move. Professional players, who play on a 19 X 19 squares board, can take up two days to complete a game.
Like a chess game, playing Weiqi comes with many benefits such as increasing one’s intellect, patience, observation and interpersonal skills. Did you know that Weiqi was used by Chinese imperial courts as a gauge to measure the intellectual strength of imperial scholars before selected to serve the Emperor? It was also a game played during conversations between the Emperor and his civil and military advisers.
NSS Centre conducts free Weiqi lessons for the public every Saturday from 3pm onwards.
Add: Tokong Tow Boh Keong, 12, 1st Floor, Jalan Tokong, 31650 Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia.
Mon – Fri: 9am – 6pm
Sat: 9am – 1pm
Sun & public holiday: by appointment only
Event: Perak Weiqi Tournament 2014
Venue: Tow Boh Keong Hall, Ipoh
Date: 2nd – 4th Dec, 2014
Time: from 8.30am
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