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  1. 4 points
    Disclaimer: Below is an amateur translation from http://www.japan-sumo.ru/?q=node/867 using my not very good knowlege about both Russian and English. Question: We very much wanted to know. Every time before bout your are doing something with your left hand as if you are crossing yourself. What does that gesture mean? You are a Christian? Answer (smiling): This way I conscerate my body and free my heart. But I do not cross myself. I draw in the air character (kanji ?) symbolizing heart. This means I enter the bout without any extraneous thoughts and with maximum faith in myself. Q: Why are you doing this with left hand? A: I am left handed. I also throw the salt with left hand. Q: Is it true that your most principal opponent is Kisenosato? A: Yes, Kisenosato. And Toyonoshima too. I definitely don't want to give to these fighters with whom I entered professional sumo together. We started the way of rikishi at the begining of 2002. It was terrible shame when they manage to climb erlier than me to the elite divisions juryo and makkuuchi. I think this acute rivlary with them was the main reason for me to occupy shuch high rank on the banzuke. Q: How do you and Kisenosato deal together outside of the dohio? A: We are friends. When visiting various regions in Japan during jungyo we have a dinner together. But the closer the friendship the more irreconcilable our rivlary on the dohyo. Q: Are you going to do eveything possible to prevent Kisenosato win tournament before you? A: Yes, indeed. Q: Tell us please how did you came to sumo? A: The former Sadogatake oyakata (yokozuna Kotozakura) paid attention on me when I was 8 year old. I was in third grade and was slighly larger than my coevals. We agreed that when I grow up I will join Sadogatake beya. Q: You love sumo since childhood? A: My love to sumo was inspired by my grandfather. When I was very little boy he built for me a real dohyo in front of the house. I was also encouraged by meeting with Takanohana. I was about 8-9 when strongest rikishi visited our town. Takanohana did put me on his knees and we took pictures together. Q: Are you happy with doing what you love? A: Yes. My childhood dream was realized. Q: Your main weapon is "buldozer-like" gaburi-yori. Don't you aim for diversifying your style with thrusts like Kisenosato did? A: To me more important than wins and loses is to demonstrate sumo which the audience likes. I am not very tall - just 180 centimeters. That's why I believe I better not diversify my technique, but rather polish "my" hidari-yotsu to climb even higher on the banzuke. Q: Japanese rikishi did win nor any basho for six years already. When you can please the fans by wining the Emperor's Cup? A: I set such goal for myself for this year. And I will try very hard to achieve it. Q: Do you think you can earn the highest rank Yokozuna? A: I believe I can. But there are many obstacles to overcome. Q: What do you like besides sumo? A: Fishing. Q: What sports are you interested in? A: Martial arts, baseball. I very much love sports. Q: Roho and Hakurozan always speak very warmly about you watching your bouts. They asked to convey you warm greetings. A: Really? I am very happy to hear. Definitely give them my best regards.
  2. 1 point
    Just checked my old diaries. True, 1997 was a Saturday (no note about whether or not I went -- by this time I had been following sumo for over 20 years and even Yasukuni was rather old hat). 1996, it was Tuesday 16th and I have a note that it was rained off. 1995, Sunday 16 -- Easter Sunday so I had other things to do. 1994: no mention, but that monthI was awfully busy taking different groups to various sumo occasions or addressing them. 1993: Friday 23rd: it's in square brackets which indicates that I didn't go. 1992: Friday 24th; no note whether I attended or not, but probably not, as it was a weekday. My records go back to 1973, but I don't have any more time to check back. Any time you want on-the-spot information on sumo in the '70s and '80s, feel free to ask, Mark. Orion
  3. 1 point
    No, that's what I meant - if e.g. Tokitenku gets traded away from Tokitsukaze, they're giving up his spot along with him, and the only way they could have a foreigner again at a later date would be to trade for one. I agree that that would effectively kill the 1-per-heya rule and leave only the overall maximum in place, but that's how I'm understanding that rumour. I think leaving the 1-per-heya rule technically in place makes sense so that newly founded stables can't just go on a rampage and fill up all available spots. Anyway, that could open up some interesting possibilities without the need to relax the overall quota, kind of like trading draft picks in other sports - imagine some heya trading for a (probably) soon-to-be-retired foreign veteran like Kokkai so they can get their hands on his foreigner spot to use for a potential new recruit they have their eyes on.
  4. 1 point
    Unless in the future, someone would want to trade a foreigner to a stable that doesn't have one, in exchange for a Japanese rikishi. They may have to go back to X (probably number of existing heya at the time) foreigners in sumo period, not 1 per heya. It looks like they are getting in a right mess at the moment..
  5. 1 point
    A bit of a tangent, but: Over at the Japanese places the same issue was brought up, and somebody claimed that "foreigner spots" (unfilled, not those in use) will be made tradeable sometime this year, too, apparently on the notion that the Kyokai doesn't want to relax its implicit maximum of "only as many foreigners as there are stables", but that with all the heya closings of recent years they've become attuned to the fact that they're shooting themselves in the foot by leaving unclaimed spots with stables such as Nakamura that have no intention of ever accepting a foreign rikishi. I have no idea what the trading partner would be allowed to offer in those situations, and the whole thing sounds a bit iffy to me altogether, so take it with a large amount of salt. I'll say one thing: This would be an easy way to deal with actual foreign rikishi being traded, i.e. so that if a stable trades away a foreigner for a Japanese rikishi, they're also permanently forfeiting their foreigner quota to their trading partner. (That's mostly why I'm even bringing up that rumour here.)
  6. 1 point
    Thinking about the whole thing, it's interesting that the trading dynamics may well run completely counter to what it happening in other sports. Usually it's less rich teams being forced to trade away their successful veterans to the big franchises because they're just becoming too expensive to keep, while the rich teams will trade away their unproven prospects. With no significant salary differences between same-rank rikishi in Ozumo, I think it's more likely that the smaller heya will want to trade for aging veterans who can give them a reliable "presence" (for lack of a better word) and strong public exposure for a few years - especially to help recruiting - while the bigger stables might want to pick up some more speculative youngsters to keep their operation going. An example I'm thinking of, if it wasn't for the Oshima closure complicating things and the apparent ban on trading ozeki, would be trading Osh for either Asahisho or Kyokushuho. Or if Sadogatake thinks their own development program is strong enough: perhaps Aminishiki for either of the Oshima guys? Incidentally, I can't find this in the reports so far, but I'm hoping the division-for-same-division rule refers to career high rank, not rank at the time of trade.
  7. 1 point
    Sadagotake is rumored to have offered Kotooshu to any heya that will take him. There is some disagreement on the rank restrictions on the one-for-one swaps. Some claim that ozekis can only be swapped for other ozekis, while others assert that there is only a makuuchi for makuuchi restriction regardless of rank. Some details of the program have yet to be worked out.
  8. 1 point
    before tachi-ai, the gyoji says "jikan desu" = it's time or "matta nashi" = no (more) matta then "te o tsuite" = put your hands (on the clay)
  9. 1 point
    You might also want to check the (huge) "Glossary of Sumo Terms" section, which can be found on the front page of this forum. When you get there, look up "nokotta" & "hakke-yoi" (Gyoji...)
  10. 1 point
    As usual, there were a limited number of Day 1 pics. Hinkaku ... Shminkaku Still working the crowd Quake/Tsunami Remembrance Haku - Ozan Baruto - Gaga Haru - Myogi Nowaka - Kise Ami - Noshin Fuji - Daido
  11. 1 point
    Hehe, couldn't he refuse another kotenage ? (Blinking...)