Yukari Umezawa, the most beautiful Japanese woman ever to become a professional go player

Born on October 4, 1973 in Tokyo, Yukari Umezawa became professional 1-dan in 1996, 2-dan in 1998 and 3-dan in 1999.
Yukari Umezawa

She appears on NHK (Japan's National Television station) teaching and giving commentaries on important go matches.

I finally got meet The Great Umezawa on November 14, 1999, on the occasion of the 10th Annual International Amateur Go Pairs Championship in Tokyo, which featured teams of one man and one woman playing moves of go in tandem. While not quite the spectacular beauty she appears to be from her photographs, she more than makes up for that in charm and personality. She smiles a lot and appears happy and friendly. It is easy to understand why television viewers are enchanted and enthralled by her.

I introduced myself to her and fortunately she had never heard of me. She was the Mistress of Ceremonies at the awarding of prizes for the World Amateur Go Pairs Championship. She stood in front of an audience of about one thousand plus television cameras for two hours, introducing various speakers who often talked at length. She then read off endless lists of prize winners, who were presented their prizes.

It was a magnificent performance by Miss Umezawa. I am sure I could never have done this myself. A person would almost have to be made of iron to do this, and yet she maintained her smiles and her pleasing countenance throughout her two hour performance.

Nobody in the audience except for me seemed to think we had witnessed something remarkable.

Sam Sloan

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