While there were aspects to the game against Meijin that I felt were underplayed, the episode in general was definitely a solid one that gave Sai a chance to play, though he didn't exactly shine. With a strong handicap on him and playing against a real master, Sai certainly had the deck stacked against him. The relationship between Hikaru and Sai definitely changed during this small arc as each of them are strong personalities in their own way and they haven't really clashed for awhile with what they want out of the relationship going forward.
The whole incident has caused Sai to reflect on his current life and wonder whether he'll actually find what it is he's looking for. The small chink in their relationship has him questioning a lot of things and it starts him to remembering events from a thousand years ago when he was playing Go against those of the court. The accusations that fly in the course of a match caused Sai to lose, and badly, because his reputation was ruined and he ended up banished from the capitol. What drove him, and drives him to this day, is his desire to play Go and to find the Divine Move. His journey in the outside world led him to a man named Torajiro who took him in and played often with him, giving him hope for finding the Move, but ultimately leaving him unfulfilled.
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