The current Tak Champion and newly-named Dragon, alion02, has won the 2023 US Tak Open. This tournament saw 148 hard-fought games played between 38 players. While alion02 remained in the lead throughout the tournament, things got quite close at the end, where he only barely made it out by a 1 point margin after second-place finisher, Will (x57696c6c), lost a dynamic game to Simmon in the last round. Tones, who has been playing tak for barely a year, had the honor of being the first player to beat alion02 in 2023; in this important game, black got an advantage early in the middlegame and – crucially – managed to keep that advantage and convert it into a flat win in 47 moves. Once it was proven that he was not quite invincible, alion02 went on to split his matches with all of the other top 5 players and win all of his games against the rest of the field to finish an outstanding year.
The Open provided 3 qualification slots for the 2024 Tak Championship. Since alion02 was already qualified by virtue of being the current Champion, these went to the second place player, Will, along with Abyss and Tones – who finished joint 3rd. They will be joined by 2 players who qualify from the 2024 Members tournament, and 2 who qualify by rating in November to fight for the title. Just missing out on qualification were ManaT, rabbitboy84, and Simmon who finished joint 5th.
Full standings can be found here. Individual pairings and match results can be seen by clicking on a player’s username, including links to all games.