A nine-year-old girl who is set to become the youngest professional player of the board game go in Japan has played the world's top-ranked female player.
The Japan Go Association, or Nihon Ki-in, decided to induct Sumire Nakamura as a professional under a special quota for gifted young amateurs.
The quota was created to nurture players who can rival champions in China and South Korea, where the game is also popular.
On Wednesday, Nakamura faced Choi Jeong, a 22-year-old, ninth-dan player, in a commemorative match held in South Korea.
Choi defeated Nakamura after nearly two hours.
Nakamura later told reporters that she wants to gain more skills. When asked whether she wants to play Choi again as a professional, she answered "yes," with a smile.
Choi said Nakamura may not have been able to demonstrate her full ability due to pressure, but said the young player has great potential.
Choi also said Nakamura's spirit to try to do her best until the end will help her grow as a go player.
Nakamura will be 10 when she turns professional in April.