Record-Breaking Teen Shogi Player Fujii Aiming Even Higher

Society Culture

Fukuoka, Aug 21 (Jiji Press)--Teenage professional shogi player Sota Fujii, who has become the youngest-ever holder of two of the eight major titles for the Japanese board game, said Friday he is determined to further enhance his ability and aim even higher.

"I'm filled with deep emotion," Fujii, 18, said of his winning of the Oi title on Thursday that followed his earning of the Kisei title only in mid-July, in a press conference held in the southwestern city of Fukuoka.

"I still have to enhance my ability," he said. "I found some new issues in the Oi title matches, so I'll aim higher."

The haori jacket worn over kimono by Fujii during the final match on Thursday was a gift from Masataka Sugimoto, 51, Fuji's mentor. "The haori's color was so vivid that it had a sobering effect. It was nice that I could achieve the victory in such a condition," Fujii said.

Fujii said he talked with his family and Sugimoto over the phone after the match Thursday night. "I think they were happy for me," he said, with a subtle smile on his face.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press