Xiangqi Greats : Li Yiting 李义庭

 

Name: Li Yiting 李义庭, 1937-???

Birthplace: Wuhan City, Hubei Province

Titles: GM

Summary of achievements:

  1. Won the 1958 Chinese National Xiangqi Singles Championships, dethroning Yang Guanlin
  2. Placed 2nd place to 6th place in the same competition from 1959-1965
  3. Tutored GM Liu Dahua

 Nicknames: 棋坛慧星 the comet of the Xiangqi world 

Li Yiting is perhaps one of the lesser known GMs. Born in 1937 in Wuhan City, Hubei province, Li Yiting started to learn Xiangqi only at 12. Li later went under the  tutelage of another great player called Luo Tianyang at that time. And he learnt fast.  

His genius was soon evident when he challenged GM Yang Guanlin and went 2 games apiece at the tender age of 17 in 1954. Yang was considered the best player at that time. Another who achieved what Li did could boast about it for generations to come. 

Li made headlines when he won the Chinese National Xiangqi Singles Championships in 1958, dethroning Yang. Though he did not win another tournament, he was placed runner up to 6th place for the same tournament from 1959-1965. 

He decided to retire from active competition after China underwent the cultural revolution but kept his presence felt by teaching the younger chess players about Xiangqi, and promoting International chess and Go in Hubei province. Perhaps his greatest pupil is GM Liu Dahua. Other pupils include 陈淑兰 Chen Shulan , female GM, runner up in 2 Chinese National Xiangqi female singles championships, Master Li Wangxiang 李望祥, female Master Xiong yan熊艳.

Li was also very active in promoting international chess, especially when one of his daughters decided to take international chess instead of Xiangqi. His daughter eventually became a professional international chess player and came in 5th place in the Chinese National Chess Championships. Master Lin Weiguo 林卫国 (2 time Chinese National International Chess Champion) benefited from his contributions too. 

Li’s style has been described as balanced and was especially good at moving and positioning pieces on the board to his advantage. He was also known for his skills in the end game. He is also best known for his Central cannon with river patrolling cannon opening and has written a book on it. Unfortunately, I have yet been able to obtain a copy. 

Other than the references mentioned below, there have been very limited reports on Li Yiting to date. The admin at this site would greatly welcome any more information about this Xiangqi grandmaster. 

Last updated 5th March 2011 

Reference :

  1. In Chinese, http://www.ck.tp.edu.tw/~cybera/history/history_master_superb.html#1
  2. In Chinese, and perhaps the only available in depth report of the Li, <<特级大师 李义庭 专辑>> by 钱刚 and 张郁伟

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