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March 22, 2007


Mark Schreiber

Hi Takodori,
Your title says, “Bonanza led the middlegame”. I read the translated comments of Watanabe in the shogi-l. Where does Watanabe say Bonanza led the middlegame? Watanabe said Bonanza made the correct move and Bonanza made a good move. But I don’t see where Watanabe says Bonanza was leading the middlegame.


The position at the 71th move(P6e-p6d) is now commonly recognized that Bonanza led the middlegame.

Mark Schreiber

Why is move 71 P6e-p6d recognized as Bonanza leading the middle game?

Watanabe talks about P6e-p6d. Watanabe says P6e-p6d was unexpected. Watanabe thinks P6e-p6d is a bad move. Watanabe changes his mind P6e-p6d is a good move. Watanabe plays S-3e expecting Bonanza to play a bad move. But Bonanza plays the correct move P-3f. Watanabe realizes Bonanza is stronger then he previously thought. Watanabe never said Bonanza was leading.

How was Bonanza in a stronger position than Watanabe?


Watanabe made no bad moves after the 71th move. If Bonanza moved 89.L*2g instead of 89.P*2d, then Bonanza should have won. This theoritically means Bonanza led the position of the 71th move(P6e-6d). I don't say the 71th move is the decisive one that started to lead the position. Maybe it led the position a couple moves ealier. Katsumata 6dan suggested 60.R8b-8c might be questionable in the TV program aired in May.

My understaning what he means is if Watanabe moved 60.R8b-8d instead of R8b-8c, then the possible variation would be 61. R6h-6g 62. L9a-9b 63.B4f-9a+ 64.P8e-8f 65.P8gx8f 66.R8dx8f 67.+B9ax9b 68.R8f-8i+. Comparing with the proceeding of the real game, the position of Sente's promoted bishop is worse since it has shorter diagonal line.

Mark Schreiber

Now I see what you are referring to. Watanabe explained Bonanza needed to sacrifice pieces. He figured Bonanza wouldn’t be capable of finding such a high-level sequence. He was correct because Bonanza did not see it. Computers still have a long way to go in understanding shogi. I say about 2 decades before they are unbeatable.

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