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mikawa last won the day on July 29 2018

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  1. Chris Gould recently travelled to Kashiwa and spoke with the Tebakari siblings' parents, who own a family restaurant:
  2. mikawa

    New recruits for Haru 2019

    That's Niigata Kaiyo High School, their sumo club is pretty good.
  3. mikawa

    New recruits for Haru 2019

    Saito Daisuke, now THAT's a potential sekitori in the making
  4. mikawa

    Shokkiri - Comedy Sumo

    Chris Gould has provided a translated version of the shokkiri that's performed during jungyo events:
  5. mikawa

    Takekaze Retires

    Here's part 2 of that NHK interview, translated by Chris Gould:
  6. mikawa

    Heisei strongest yokozuna ranking

    Good idea. Hakuho: 41 Asashoryu: 25 Takanohana: 22 Musashimaru: 12 Akebono: 11 Harumafuji: 9 Kakuryu: 5 Wakanohana: 5 Asahifuji: 4 Kisenosato: 2 It's arguable whether Asashoryu is actually a stronger Yokozuna than Takanohana, and Musashimaru's position on the list seems a bit off as well.
  7. mikawa

    What other sports do you watch?

    NFL, but only the game highlights on YouTube, because Tom Brady's story is so inspiring, going from a sixth round 199th pick to the greatest of all time. Football (or soccer in some countries), because I grew up in England. Sheffield United's my home team. I used to watch tennis, snooker, rugby union, formula one etc, but much less nowadays. I have recently been watching quite a bit of League of Legends. Do eSports count?
  8. mikawa

    New recruits for Haru 2019

    Out of the new recruits so far, Yoshii Ko seems to have the most potential.
  9. mikawa

    New recruits for Haru 2019

    Totally agree with @Katooshu on this one. I've seen Toma over the years, and he has NEVER shown good sumo, even when he was sweeping all 9 tournaments during his elementary school days. In fact, part of my reasoning for awarding Tottori Johoku with high school of the year is that their other members carried the team to very good results last year, despite having Toma as their captain. He probably won't even get to higher Sandanme. The thing is that in order to win the Wanpaku Tournament three years in a row, you pretty much have to be a strong kid with a very big body, which would inevitably mean that their skills and techniques never improve to a high enough level because they've never needed it. Once they've grown up, that's when this will come back to bite them. Regarding what @Yubinhaad said, it does look like that Yabugasaki Rento has a younger brother, called Yabugasaki Akihito, who was a Wanpaku quarter-finalist when he was in Grade 5. Akihito will be starting middle school this coming April, a few weeks before another Akihito is set to graduate.
  10. mikawa

    Hakuho cup 2019

    Chris Gould has uploaded videos of the semi-finals and the final in the team event. A lot of research were put into the making of these videos, he even went as far as to contact the Mongolian team coach directly to find out the Mongolian competitors' names. Now that's dedication!
  11. mikawa

    Hakuho cup 2019

    To be honest, I'm not sure why Mahato has not joined a local sumo club yet, even though he does train with his father just before the Hakuho Cup each year. He obviously wants to win more bouts, so why not? One thing I've seen time and again is that training with older guys is NOT the same as training with opponents your own age, you won't improve as much.
  12. Chris Gould has just uploaded his video of the team final between Kawakami Dojo and Sumiyo Sumo Club. Will the three musketeers be able to overcome their eternal nemesis this time?
  13. Found this short documentary from 3 years ago when the three club-mates prepared for the Kyushu qualifiers:
  14. Where Sumo is A Way of Life Location - Amami Exchange Centre (奄美市住用町 奄美体験交流館), Sumiyo Town, Amami City, Kagoshima Keiko - Tuesdays (from 5pm), Fridays (from 5pm), Sundays (from 9am) Founded in 1991, Sumiyo Sumo Club (住用相撲クラブ) is located in the heart of the Amami Oshima Islands, where sumo has been extremely popular since as far back as the Edo Period. Even though Amami Oshima isn't too big (it's only 700 sq km), there are dohyos spread all over the island, and it is home to quite a number of sumo clubs / dojos. Amami Oshima has also produced a large number of talented wrestlers, many of whom are familiar names in Ozumo (such as Satoyama and Daiamami). Our focus today is on one of the most successful clubs there - Sumiyo Sumo Club. There are many sumo clubs in Japan who can boast of a talented member or two. Some of them, such as Kashiwa Junior Sumo Club, are home to even more talented wrestlers. However, the golden generation that Komatsuryu Dojo (John Gunning's club) were able to produce during recent years, where no less than FOUR members from the SAME year group (Tsubasa, Koshi, Yudai and Soma) were all national quarter-finalists, is extremely rare. Imagine then how good of a job Sumiyo's coach Morita Jiro (森田 次郎) must have done to nurture these three talents, all of whom are from the same year group I might add. Talent #1 - Sakae Ryusei (栄 龍征) Ryusei has one of the biggest bodies in his year group. He was one of the favourites for the entire tournament when he made his Wanpaku debut back in the summer of 2013, but when he reached the semi-finals, he came up against a familiar adversary (from 20:14). However, Ryusei would come back the following year to claim the Wanpaku title by beating Kawazoe Fuma's conqueror, Ochiai Tetsuya, in the final. Ryusei would not qualify for the Wanpaku Tournament in Grade 6 because he couldn't win the Amami Oshima qualifiers. The person who did is actually a club-mate of Ryusei's, and he goes by the name of Hamaguchi Hayato. Talent #2 - Hamaguchi Hayato (濱口 颯翔) The incredibly tall Hayato first rose to prominence when he beat out his club-mate Ryusei to qualify for the Wanpaku Tournament when he was in Grade 6. He performed incredibly well during the tournament, and ended up winning it. His opponent in the final was someone called Kanzaki Oki, who got to the final by side-stepping, of all people, Kawazoe Fuma. You've probably realised by now that in this one year group alone, Sumiyo Sumo Club had not one but TWO national champions. Quite an achievement eh? However, things don't stop there, because...... Talent #3 - Nishika Haruto (西加 陽斗) With such strong opponents such as Ryusei and Hayato in his club, the relatively short Haruto's elementary school days were tough, as you might expect. He is a strong kid, no doubt about that, but Ryusei and Hayato were also strong, and much bigger. You can see how difficult it was for Haruto in the following video, where he went up against Ryusei in a best-of-3 match: However, that isn't to say that Haruto didn't have a chance to shine when he was young. Although he never made it to the Wanpaku Tournament because only the winner in Amami Oshima can qualify, he did qualify for the national finals of the Primary School Championships when he was in Grade 4, because you "only" need to be in the top 4 in the Kyushu region to get there. Haruto did very well in that tournament, making it all the way to the semi-finals, where he lost against a certain Narita Rikido (Rikido is a year younger than Haruto). This was Rikido's first eye-catching moment. Incidentally, the opponent whom Haruto beat in the quarter-finals that year was Uchida Kyota, who has a famous rivalry with the aforementioned Narita Rikido. Although Haruto's primary school days weren't as glamorous as Ryusei and Hayato, he would improve leaps and bounds during his middle school days, eventually overtaking his two club-mates. Last summer, during the National Middle School Student Championships, Haruto would go on to win the whole thing, and become a national champion himself. The Eternal Nemesis And so, we have Sakae Ryusei, Hamaguchi Hayato and Nishika Haruto. Three members of Sumiyo Sumo Club, three national champions, and all three in the same year group. Despite all of their achievements, there is one shadow that hangs over all of them. One opponent who is so strong and whose sumo is so well-rounded, that he has tormented the three of them both at regional level and at national level for years and years. I am, of course, referring to the star of Kumamoto - Kawazoe Fuma (川副 楓馬). The three members of Sumiyo are all very good in their own right, but Fuma is just better. It was Fuma who knocked out Sakae Ryusei during his first Wanpaku tournament, when it looked like no one could stop him. It was Fuma who beat Ryusei again on his way to becoming Primary School Yokozuna during Grade 6. It was Fuma who has such a big presence in the Kyushu region that at least one of them would not qualify for the Primary School Championships. Sometimes one, sometimes two, but never all three. It's like a Sword of Damocles hanging over their heads. So imagine the pressure on Haruto's shoulders when he went up against Kawazoe Fuma inside the Kokugikan last year, in the championship bout. His team-mates watched on from the hanamichi...... They have finally banished their demons, and have finally defeated Fuma on the national stage. During the team competitions last summer, Team Kagoshima, which was made up of Haruto, Ryusei and Hayato (which was really cool to see), finished in the semi-finals in one tournament, and were runner-up in the other. It was a very strong team on paper, with all three Sumiyo stars working together, but they couldn't quite go all the way. And now onto the 9th Hakuho Cup earlier this week, where there was to be one final chapter to our story. Sumiyo Sumo Club upset the national champions Yaizu Sumo Club to earn a final match against Kawakami Dojo, who are captained by none other than Kawazoe Fuma. The three musketeers have one final score to settle with their arch nemesis, with Nishika Haruto given the responsibility to take him down. Highlights of the match will be available later this week on Chris Gould's YouTube channel.
  15. Sugahara Haruka at Monday's Hakuho Cup. He will be a third year middle schooler come the new school year in April, so he will be a name to watch out for this summer.