Renjuplayers in the world - 14. Tomas Hagenfors

0.Your name, your nationality, your age, male or female.

0   Tomas Hagenfors, Swedish, 47 years, male

 1.When did you start to play renju and how did you learn it?

1   I´ ve played ever since I was a kid, winning some local tournaments at school or at camps. I joined the Swedish federation in 1977 as soon as I found out that there were serious competitions going on in Sweden. I still can regret that I never heard of our federation until then, especially since it was founded in 1958, and the first Swedish Championship was held in 1961. I lived in Stockholm where it all took place, but I never heard anything though I was very interested already as a kid.

Of course I started playing Gomoku or ”luffarschack” which is a game that everyone knows here in Sweden.  My first tournament was successful, and I became the Swedish Champion in 1977 right from the outside. I also took part in the first renju-competition held in Sweden in the year 1981 where I became number 2 after our first champion, Tommy Maltell.

 2.Do you play in a club? In which clubs have you played?

2   I play in a club in my city of Kumla ( 200 km west of Stockholm). I am the chairman and also one of the founders of the club. Earlier I have played in and founded clubs in Örebro and Jönköping.

3.Which are your best results in national and international tournaments (Usual  tournaments and e-mail tournaments). Which is your international rating for the  moment? 

3   My best results are Swedish Champion in the years 1977, 1984 and 1985. I was also number 2 in the first ever held world-championship of Gomoku by mail (this was by slow-mail and the competition took one year). I also was number 2 in the first Swedish Championship of Renju. Recently I won the Swedish Championship of Five-In-A-Row 1999.

 4.Which is the best player you have met?

4   In the seventies the best players were Viktor Kaufman and Alexander Nosovsky in Moscow, and here in Sweden it was Alf Dahlgren, Tommy Maltell and my cousin Stefan Jansson.  Now I believe the quality of the games are so much higher and the best players today are the Japanese champions and Ando Meritee.

5.Can you explain why you enjoy renju?

5   I like logical games, and also I think it´s important to keep your brain working in order to stay young at mind.

6.Which is your plans for the future as a player?

6   I have no intention to become a top-player once again, but I still enjoy competing from timt to time. Maybe I already am the player who have taken part in most national championships? Anyway I intend to keep on playing at my ”touristlevel”. I also enjoy training new kids in our club, and maybe one day we will have a champion from our club again.

8.If you are one of the leaders in your club our in your country, please, tell us about your club.

Our club in Kumla is one of the biggest in Sweden and we meet every other monday  at 18.00 We are around 30 members where the majority are children between 7 – 14 years. Every year we arrange school-championships (for our city)  that last year attracted some 450 players. We are also hosting ”Svealand Open” a one-day Gomoku-competition in september that this year saw 50 participants from Sweden, Finland and Estonia.

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