pricklypomegranate

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About pricklypomegranate

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  • Birthday 22/09/2000

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  1. pricklypomegranate

    Nokozuna again?

    I think I made a post which stated that Hakuho took 5 years to finish his process, Kakuryu on his 3rd year. But yes, according to reports, the problem seems to be on the Mongolian side and not the Japanese side. If the story of Kakuryu only formally applying for severance last year is true, I think that was incredibly foolish, and he will have to take that aspect of responsibility. Nevertheless, I share everyone's wish that Kakuryu is nearing the end and can buy enough time to reach there. I understand that the YDC has only advisory power but they were specifically employed to be arbiters of yokozuna decency and dignity - their hostility and hypocrisy damages their legitimacy. Their silence on Kakuryu's disclosure about Izutsu is deafening. I haven't been watching long and will readily admit my ignorance but my general sentiment is that the younger Japanese sumo fans (and especially international audiences), whom the Kyokai has worked so hard to gain and retain (with their increased and improved media presence) are also not exactly jiving with the YDC and their decisions. I hope that the new rijicho advisory council being set up is more progressive (what with their agenda with the internationalisation of sumo) and formalises the rules regarding administrative matters kabu and heya inheritance and setup (but not necessarily dohyo rules, the ambiguity of it still gives sumo its uniqueness and charm). How would you guys formalise kabu/heya inheritance?
  2. pricklypomegranate

    Preparations of the Y/O- November 2020

    The Kyokai has finally released a video compiling all the training videos and interviews of the degeiko. If anyone can translate please help. Enjoy.
  3. pricklypomegranate

    Nokozuna again?

    Whether you love or hate him, Hakuho is a sumo phenomenon and emphatically not a representation of the norm - the worth of a rikishi should not be judged in relation to him. I think we really have to look at sumo as a whole to judge Kakuryu, whom I think is a better than average yokozuna. If you look at the amount of yusho won, the big kahuna yokozuna only seems to be a recent trend. If you look at the 6BPY system, post-1938 to present, Kakuryu's got most of them beat in terms of yusho, longevity and some say technique, especially in the presence of two mega, extremely large, family size kahunas - Asashoryu and Hakuho. Also, considering his achievements, the amount of knowledge and expertise he can impart and the impact on his career and the lives of his wife and kids (they go to school in Japan) on the line, to ask him to quit when Kisenosato sat 7 basho out is quite a travesty to me.
  4. pricklypomegranate

    Nokozuna again?

    I sincerely hope that what Kintamayama says is true - Kakuryu is certainly in no condition to compete. I have nothing against him, but certainly am not a diehard fan. It's not that he doesn't have charisma, it's just that I feel he is a very private person and not very easy for some one on the outside to know. However, technique wise, although greatly overshadowed by Hakuho, you cannot deny that Kakuryu is one of the best in his generation. It would be a great loss for sumo if Kakuryu didn't continue to coach - I think we have to take that into account. He doesn't seem like the ultra violent and cruel type and genuinely has many things to teach his (perhaps) future deshi. We can certainly have more Kakuryus in the oyakata world, and a few less of The Oyakatas That Shall Not Be Named.
  5. pricklypomegranate

    Preparations of the Y/O- November 2020

    It's the last day of the joint degeiko. Let's see what the rikishi themselves have to say... Sources https://www.tokyo-sports.co.jp/sports/sumou/2323338/ https://www.nikkansports.com/battle/sumo/news/202010220000275.html https://hochi.news/articles/20201022-OHT1T50090.html https://www.nikkansports.com/m/battle/sumo/news/amp/202010220000674.html Takakeisho and Shodai did not show up for degeiko today. The newspapers did note Hakuho's perfect attendance, despite his injury and age. With the lack of Ozeki prey, Hakuho calmed down and got into a charitable mood giving advice to Kiribayama (see above) and sticking to basic exercises. Hakuho: [on joint degeiko] "Though I had a little discomfort and anxiety over my knee, it is nothing major. I'm glad I finished this week without any injuries and without wasting this opportunity. I tried to rebuild my body and regain my sumo sense. Through this, I hope I can make a comeback [in November]." Additional [potentially worrying] information about Asanoyama has cropped up. Source: https://www.nikkansports.com/m/battle/sumo/news/amp/202010220000674.html Asanoyama: [On not coming for the degeiko] "I have read articles theorising why I did not come for group practice. Well, I thought about what works well for me and did it in the heya. I will continue to work hard between now and shoinichi." Asanoyama: [On not allowing press into Takasago-beya today] "I'm sorry, but I wanted to concentrate today. Weight along is meaningless - it needs speed to accompany it. The number of spectators is increasing and it gives rikishi more of an incentive. I want to work hard and make sure I do not do shameful sumo." No evidence about Asanoyama being secretive, but hmm. Also, Shodai and Asanoyama should follow the aforementioned showbiz advice and don't read (or at least don't read too closely) their reviews. Epilogue Here is some video footage of Shodai and Hakuho's bouts yesterday on Twitter.
  6. pricklypomegranate

    Preparations of the masses- November 2020

    I don't think Enho would have even the privilege of that. Looking at past videos, it's more like Hakuho sitting at the head of the table and Enho at the side, so it might be a full on stare. I would have lost my appetite.
  7. pricklypomegranate

    Preparations of the masses- November 2020

    The loveable Enho has broken his silence. In his interview with the Hokkoku Shimbun, which I will give the gist of, he gives an honest, yet optimistic look at his recent make-koshi streak: Enho (Miyagino Stable, Kanazawa City, Kanazawa Gakuin University alumni) celebrated his 26th birthday on the 18th. He responded to an interview with the Hokkoku Shimbun yesterday and gave promotion to sanyaku as his goal for the next year. Looking back at his make-koshi streak, he said, "My physical and mental state was weak, but now I am enriched with mental skills." Yokozuna Hakuho ordered him to increase his weight by 18kg to fulfil his 110kg "winning plan". To accomplish this, Enho is eating three bowls of rice. He turned from employment at a general company to jumping into the world of sumo wrestling. "It's been four years since I started, and I'm now 26 years old. With this small body, I didn't expect [my career] to work. It's so strange to be in Makuuchi." Enho laughed. [...] In addition to his well-publicised neck pain, he also injured his wrist. He mounted the dohyo with no excuse, but admitted, "My heart wasn't there. When I was on the rise, I felt determined even if I couldn't practice. Last basho, I was totally out of it." Last basho, when Enho started with 2 wins and 8 losses, his mother sent him a message on his smartphone. It contained the energetic appearance of children at his alma mater, Daitoku Elementary School with them saying "Do you best, Enho!". "Some children did shiko to support me, and I couldn't help but smile. They gave me strength." Enho beamed. The next day, he brilliantly scored a win and achieved a revival of 4 wins and 1 loss until Senshuraku. Surgery is needed to completely cure his neck pain, but the treatment has helped calm it down. Enho called the eating "the hardest practice". Hakuho ordered, "If you want to rise, you need 110kg. Don't go home until you eat three bowls of rice." As well we know, Enho doesn't like the aroma of freshly cooked white rice. On the 20th during lunch Enho managed to eat three bowls of rice under the imperious Yokozuna's gaze (emphasis mine), but complained, "I suffered so much I couldn't move until the evening." As he receives the Yokozuna's "whip of love", Enho commented, "Recently, my performance has been weak, but I want to show my hometown fans a rejuvenated appearance. My body is full and I will aim for sanyaku in the next year."
  8. pricklypomegranate

    Preparations of the masses- November 2020

    Astute and long-time followers of sumo have guessed correctly that Takayasu was the mysterious last person in the 10-person degeiko session. Here is what he has to say: Source: https://www.nikkansports.com/battle/sumo/news/202010210000384.html - photo from Sumo Kyokai's Twitter, where he is training with Kiribayama. The former Ozeki is looking very good as he is expecting a return to the sanyaku ranks and winning 10/14 of his bouts today. He had much to say about his life outside of sumo, especially his first child, which is expected to arrive soon: Takayasu: [About degeiko] I wasn't feeling well when the degeiko started, so I didn't participate [until today]." Takayasu: [About his personal affairs] "I am receiving support. My wife is having a difficult time, so we are trying to support each other. I'm not going to retire yet. I have to do my best in sumo so that I can look good when my child is born [and potentially see himself going into the sport]."
  9. pricklypomegranate

    Preparations of the Y/O- November 2020

    Well, knowing Hakuho's playful and Mitakeumi's joyful personality and also the lack of warnings after, I hope the ankle grab was just in jest as he could have seriously injured that oyakata there. I know no harm, no foul, but he I just wish he wouldn't do these wholly unnecessary and unsafe things.
  10. pricklypomegranate

    Preparations of the Y/O- November 2020

    @RabidJohn Aww... Someone very important was missing at degeiko today. Very late, but here is the latest on Takakeisho - the picture below is from the Sumo Kyokai Twitter. Please enjoy Takakeisho working with the dumbbells: Source: https://www.nikkansports.com/battle/sumo/news/202010060000474.html Takakeisho did not come for the group degeiko today. Instead, he remained at Chiganoura-beya working on the basics. Earlier on, he said he wanted to decide on a plan and follow it through, so here are the results: Takakeisho: [On his plan] "The only thing left is to increase the power of my push, which I will work on. I must win [November] as I am an Ozeki." Epilogue Here on Herouth's Twitter you can see two of Hakuho's bouts with Mitakeumi - with a leg trip and delicious ankle grab.
  11. pricklypomegranate

    Preparations of the Y/O- November 2020

    News about Hakuho's sanban, Shodai's progress and (gasp!) Kakuryu's condition has been revealed. All comments below are just the gist, as I don't read Japanese, so sorry for the inaccuracies or omissions: Sources: https://www.nikkansports.com/battle/sumo/news/202010200000301.html https://hochi.news/amp/articles/20201020-OHT1T50063.html https://www.tokyo-sports.co.jp/sports/sumou/2312952/ https://www.tokyo-sports.co.jp/sports/sumou/2312862/ Not really sure if this is a good indicator of Hakuho's condition as Mitakeumi is notoriously bad at practice. Nevertheless, Hakuho had 23 bouts with Mitakeumi today, winning 22 in an eager attempt to pay the Sekiwake back for that devastating loss in July. He also responded to reporters' questions about whether he will be practicing with Shodai with a Hakuho-esque sly smile. Here are the Yokozuna's comments: Hakuho: [On sanban] "I originally intended to do 30 bouts today, but my tsukebito are not here to keep count for me. I feel good today and heard that I did good sumo. The fact that I could even practice today is one step forward. It's more of the number than content at this point. I was very conscious about the wrestling, pushing and movement inside the dohyo today. It might be evidence that the pain is slowly disappearing." Hakuho: [On practicing with Shodai]: "It might be tomorrow or the day after tomorrow. If I say too much, he might not come." What about Kakuryu? Well, it seems that he is still on basic training, and the threat of imminent retirement weighs heavy on his mind: Kakuryu: [On his current situation] "I know [my kyujo record] myself. Especially in times like this, I don't overlook it. I have to do it well but I do not have to rush. If I go all out till the end, I know I will have a result." Things are not rosy for Shodai either and it seems that the aching body he's been complaining about on Sunday is starting to take a toll his performance. Today, he only won 2 out of 8 of the bouts he fought with Ichinojo and Aoiyama today. Perhaps Hakuho was right about Shodai taking it too quickly in the first half: Shodai: [On his performance] "Everyone who has practiced earlier is getting better. I couldn't win normally. I wish I won more. I'm rather confused." Thanks @Kintamayama for being so speedy for the past two days.
  12. pricklypomegranate

    Preparations of the Y/O- November 2020

    It's not a regular degeiko where Asanoyama can just show up - he's has to do and score negative on the PCR Test. But yes, I do hope he shows up if he isn't hurt too bad.
  13. pricklypomegranate

    Preparations of the Y/O- November 2020

    Now, I am not a Hakuho jingoist and have previously been quite critical about his ill thought-out decision to use dangerous tactics during practice so close to the basho, I think he wanted to assert his position more than he intended to hurt Asanoyama - the two intentions are not necessarily mutual. I think it was not a pre-meditated move, but an accident, albeit one which Asanoyama should have expected to be prevented. I think it's so easy to be cynical about the sumo world, but I try to avoid that without romanticising the sport too much - I don't think we should count Hakuho out yet and I don't think he was there just for image purposes - he was a known degeiko nut and might be genuinely happy about somewhat returning to his routine and interacting with his other colleagues again, treasured (see Ikioi) or otherwise, and though it may be frowned upon in Japanese circles, I think he has a right to politely respond the YDC comments about him. No! Kakuryu must survive! Asanoyama conspicuously absent. P.S. Thanks for clarifying the errors in my post.
  14. pricklypomegranate

    Preparations of the Y/O- November 2020

    Information about the degeiko held at 8am today at the Kokugikan has surfaced. Degeiko will continue now till the 22nd. Here is the information I collated from the Nikkan Sports and Sports Hochi, apologies in advance if I interpret it wrongly - I am trying to decipher and amalgamate the puzzles Google Translate has provided me: Sources: https://hochi.news/articles/20201016-OHT1T50074.html https://www.nikkansports.com/battle/sumo/news/202010160000355.html https://www.nikkansports.com/battle/sumo/news/202010160000359.html?utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=nikkansports_ogp https://www.nikkansports.com/battle/sumo/news/202010160000370.html Attendees: Hakuho, Shodai, Takakeisho, Mitakeumi, Kiribayama, Aoiyama, Ichinojo, Nishikigi (and Ikioi, who is clearly pictured here, yet not mentioned in the articles). Hakuho did not fight any bouts and stuck to regular training as well as lent his chest to the shin-Ozeki Shodai for about 5 minutes. While doing so, he jokingly commented that there was only 30 minutes left of degeiko, implying he didn't want to leave. He seemed to be in good spirits and was very talkative (all following comments are not pinpoint precision translation, just the gist): [About degeiko]: "It's been a long time. I'm glad I was able to come back from surgery and do degeiko for the first time in two and a half months. It was comfortable and I am grateful. I was a little swollen and was afraid and impatient to get back to training. However, after consulting my body, I decided to go at the last minute. [Shodai] is starting to gain momentum and it's time I started to gain momentum too. I'm also a representative for the sumo world so it is my duty to show up and increase the standard of the training." [About the YDC's remarks]: "I've been here a long time. Over 30, the amount of injuries inevitably increase. Old injuries get worse, and new ones crop up. However, I would like to respond to that by saying that whenever I heal and return from injury, I post good results. I want you to understand this a little more." Shodai was also positive about the experience: [About degeiko] "I was able to practice well. I haven't been able to do much since I started training so I am hope to progress gradually from here and prepare properly as an Ozeki. The feeling of degeiko is not something you can experience in your own heya, so it is good stimuli. I am not participating in it just because I am a shin-Ozeki, but because I have this kind of opportunity. I still have more time to prepare, and would like to prepare well. I felt things were normal just for a day." Takakeisho made good practice, winning 6 out of 10 bouts with Shodai (though I am not super sure about this, Japanese proficient people please confirm): [About degeiko] "It's a very valuable experience, so I want to make it my own. I want to improve my sumo. I want to consult my body, decide on a plan and execute it well." Epilogue Here is some spicy news from the Nikkan Gendai: https://www.nikkan-gendai.com/articles/view/sports/280065 If you don't want to add to the readership figures of Japanese Daily Mail, it basically accuses Hakuho of entering in the last minute to affirm that Shodai was going to show up, thus allowing him to beat Shodai into a mush and intimidate him. Obviously, the predictions did not come true, as usual.
  15. pricklypomegranate

    Preparations of the Y/O- November 2020

    When Hakuho retires, the rikishi retirement bonus will already bankrupt the Kyokai But yeah, I don't think Hakuho will go further than July or whenever the Olympics happen, because deshis need to punished (cough cough Enho cough Ishiura)