Michael Redmond (Go player)

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Michael Sean Redmond
Michael Redmond 9P at the First WMSG, Beijing 2008 (cropped).jpg
Michael Redmond 9P at the First WMSG, Beijing Olympic Village, 2008
Full name Michael Sean Redmond
Kana マイケル レドモンド
Born (1963-05-25) May 25, 1963 (age 54)
Santa Barbara, CA, United States
Residence Tokyo, Japan
Teacher Yusuke Oeda
Rank 9 dan
Affiliation Nihon Ki-in

Michael Sean Redmond (マイケル・レドモンド, born May 25, 1963) is an American-born professional Go player. He is one of only a few such players,[1] as Go is not as widespread or developed outside of China, South Korea, and Japan. He is the only westerner to reach the grade of 9-dan—the highest grade.


Michael Redmond was born in 1963 in Santa Barbara, California, and began playing Go at age 11. At the age of 14, he moved to Japan and became an insei (Go apprentice) at the Nihon Ki-in, one of the two major Japanese Go associations. He was promoted to professional 1 dan at age 18, and 2 dan in the same year. He was promoted to 5 dan in 1985; 8 dan in 1996; and 9 dan in 2000, becoming the first western Go professional to reach 9 dan.[2]

Redmond has not won any tournament titles but has come close. He was runner-up in the Shinjin-O, Kisei 7 dan section, and NEC Shun-Ei competitions in the early 1990s. He was also a quarter-finalist in the Fujitsu Cup and Tong Yang Cup. Currently he is a celebrated commentator for the NHK channel. In 2005, he was voted "Best Commentator" for the NHK channel, over Ishida Yoshio.

In August 2006, he taught at the AGA East Coast Go Camp in Pennsylvania, and attended the 22nd annual US Go Congress in Black Mountain, North Carolina. He has also attended several other US Go Congresses.

Redmond is married to Xian-Xian Niu, a Chinese 3 dan professional. They have two daughters, Yumi and Emi. Redmond and his family are sponsors of many Go activities for children in America, such as the Redmond Cup, an annual tournament for strong youth players.[3] Niu's elder sister, Lili Niu, is a Chinese 5 dan professional and collaborator of Wu Qing-Yuan (Go Seigen). Her husband is Xiangqi (Chinese chess) champion Zhao Guo-rong.

Redmond provided the English commentary along with Chris Garlock for the Google DeepMind Challenge Match between Lee Sedol and AlphaGo from March 9 to March 15, 2016.[4][5][6][7][8] His commentary was praised in news articles as "vivid" and "illuminating".[9][10]


  • Redmond, Michael (2002). The ABC's of Attack and Defense. Slate and Shell. ISBN 978-1932001006. 
  • Redmond, Michael (2011). Patterns of the Sanrensei. Slate and Shell. ISBN 1-932001-63-8. 

Past runners-up[edit]

Title Years Lost
Japan Shinjin-O 1992
Japan NEC Shun-Ei 1990


  1. ^ Shotwell, Peter (2003). Go!: more than a game. Tuttle Publishing. p. 158. ISBN 978-0-8048-3475-9. Retrieved 29 December 2010. 
  2. ^ Michael Redmond's Bio at Sensei's Library
  3. ^ "棋手资料_新浪围棋_新浪网". duiyi.sina.com.cn. Retrieved 2016-03-10. 
  4. ^ "AlphaGo | Google DeepMind". www.deepmind.com. Retrieved 2016-03-10. 
  5. ^ DeepMind (2016-03-08), Match 1 - Google DeepMind Challenge Match: Lee Sedol vs AlphaGo, retrieved 2016-03-10 
  6. ^ DeepMind (2016-03-10), Match 2 - Google DeepMind Challenge Match: Lee Sedol vs AlphaGo, retrieved 2016-03-10 
  7. ^ DeepMind (2016-03-12), Match 3 - Google DeepMind Challenge Match: Lee Sedol vs AlphaGo, retrieved 2016-03-12 
  8. ^ DeepMind (2016-03-12), Match 4 - Google DeepMind Challenge Match: Lee Sedol vs AlphaGo, retrieved 2016-03-12 
  9. ^ "Google’s AI Wins First Game in Historic Match With Go Champion". Wired.com. Retrieved 2016-03-16. 
  10. ^ "Google turns game of Go into massive AI-vs-human spectacle". cnet.com. Retrieved 2016-03-16. 

External links[edit]