In 1846 Shusaku played against Gennan Inseki. Shusaku was then 17 years old and 4 dan. Gennan on the other hand was close to 50 years old, an established 8 dan, and head of House Inoue. Thus, it was a great privilege for Shusaku to play Gennan. The first game was played with two stones handicap, but it became clear that Shusaku was too strong and that no handicap was needed.
In their second game Shusaku took Black. After making a mistake in the taisha joseki played in the lower right corner, Shusaku played flawlessly. Yet Gennan held onto the lead. The game continued to the 127 move, the famous ear-reddening move.
White had just played the marked stone as move 126, when Shusaku played B1. B1 is called the ear-reddening move. Gennan's disciples were watching the game and not one of them doubted that Gennan would win. But a doctor, who also had been watching the game, thought that Gennan would lose. When pressed for an answer he replied: I don't know much about the game, but when Shusaku played B1 Gennan's ears flushed red. This is a sign that he had been upset.
The ear-reddening move
B1 is a profound move having influence in all four directions. It expands black's moyo at the top, it helps the four black stones below, it reduces the influence of white's strong position to the right, and it also has an eye on white's moyo on the left side. In short B1 is the central point for attack and defence.
Eventually Shusaku won this game by 2 points after 325 moves.