- 一途な（後出 devote oneself to ～は～に専念する）
- 獲得する、勝利（後出 capture は獲得する）
- 棋聖（後出 eight ... titlesは王位 (Oi) と王将 (Osho) も含む８大タイトル）
- room for improvement
- knock out
- convert advantages into wins
- central ... (CPU)
- depth ... analysis
- unexpected encounter
- inquiring mind
- 広げる（後出 broaden は広がる）
Teen shogi star Fujii Sota is surely one of Japan's biggest achievers in 2020.
He became the youngest ever to win the Kisei title, one of the eight major titles in professional shogi. Then he captured the Oi title. He also became the youngest player to score 200 wins.
"In my first title match, I was able to produce a good result, and it was a good year," Fujii, 18, reflected in an interview with the Mainichi Weekly on Nov. 22.
But he was left with room for improvement after being knocked out of the Osho tournament's challenger league, in which the top seven players compete to become the challenger.
"I was weak when it came to converting advantages into wins," Fujii conceded. "I want to increase my strength next year."
Fujii says it is important he looks at himself objectively, and over the past three years has built his own computers to analyze his games. His choice for the central processing unit (CPU), which affects the depth of a shogi engine's analysis, led to an unexpected encounter. When Lisa Su, president of American semiconductor firm Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. (AMD), learned that Fujii was an AMD user and mentioned him in a tweet two years ago, a connection developed between them, and she sent Fujii a congratulatory letter when he won his title.
The teen sensation reveals that though he is "not good at English," Su is the person he wants to meet most "to ask her about CPU technology." Fujii only uses his computers for shogi, yet his devoted, inquiring mind has expanded his knowledge beyond the game and his interactions have also broadened.
Fujii will graduate from high school in March next year. He does not plan to attend university, instead devoting himself to shogi. His aspiration for next year is to "return to the basics."
"My top goal is always to increase my strength," Fujii says. "Even though I've become a titleholder, that hasn't changed. Rather than being strong compared to others, I want to be strong as myself." (Story by Yoshinaga Yasuo)
[本文 - 347 words]