Though smaller than the Nihon Ki-in, the Kansai Ki-in is an impressive organisation in its own right. Home to almost 140 professionals and well run, it has excellent outreach in an area with a long tradition of sponsoring go. It also nurtures contacts overseas.
The traditional image of a breakway group from the Nihon Ki-in has obvious truth in it - Hashimoto Utaro founded it in 1950 and was its dominant figurehead until his death in 1994 - but the image is also somewhat out of date. Indeed, the Kansai Ki-in has even enjoyed something of a resurgence lately. It has its own star in Yuki Satoshi 9-dan, and its own young whizzkid in Seto Taiki 6-dan. But it has been home also for some time to two of Japan's top female players - Yoshida Mika 8-dan and Konishi Kazuko 8-dan.
Konishi will be fondly remembered by participants of the European Congress in Prague. GoGoD asked go journalist Pieter Mioch to go to Osaka and interview Konishi. As a former insei, he couldn't resist a game, below, but she revealed some surprising facts - and some intriguing opinions...