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Asashosakari

Kokutai National Sports Festival 2012

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I'm jumping the gun a bit, but maybe having other people aware of it will push me to not slack off on posting the results this year... The main portion of the 2012 Kokutai (held in Gifu prefecture this year) is getting underway in a couple of days, and one of the first events will be the sumo competition this coming Sunday to Tuesday. This is one of the four annual competitions through which amateur rikishi can attain an accelerated start as makushita tsukedashi.

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Things are getting started with the junior competition on Sunday, with the 47 prefectural teams bringing in (up to) 5 high school rikishi to compete in three semi-randomly drawn prelim rounds. The best 16 teams in the overall standings will then compete in a seeded knockout tournament to crown the junior champions later in the day. (The top 4 teams are also scoring points towards the overall Kokutai standings, but that's probably of less concern to us.) Monday morning will then see the junior individual title awarded - the Kokutai uses a bit of a weird mode of qualification for this by not holding actual prelims, but using the results from the team prelims. Only rikishi who won all three of their team bouts are eligible to compete for the individual championship. Needless to say, this can make the qualifier field a bit of a hodge-podge of actual contenders and guys who got lucky draws.

Monday afternoon the big guys are getting into the action for the adult competition, which is open to anyone above high school age - the 3-rikishi prefectural teams are generally made up of current university rikishi and university alumni who are still active on the business sumo league circuit. The tournament mode is the same as for the juniors with three prelim rounds and a top 16 knockout tourney. And last not least on Tuesday morning the competition that's most relevant to us will take place for the adult individual championship with the potential makushita tsukedashi spot at stake, again drawing its competitors from those who went 3-0 in the team prelims.

I haven't really kept up with the university circuit lately, so I have no idea if any of the current big names are good enough to hold their own against the business crowd. We'll see. :-)

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Junior team prelims:

Round 1:

Akita 2-3 Tokyo

Kyoto 3-2 Oita

Nara 0-5 Kanagawa

Iwate 0-5 Tottori

Ehime 2-3 Toyama

Kagoshima 5-0 Kagawa

Kochi 5-0 Saga

Yamaguchi 3-2 Gunma

Gifu 4-1 Yamagata

Osaka 2-3 Niigata

Fukushima 3-2 Nagasaki

Nagano 5-0 Shimane

Aomori 5-0 Hokkaido

Yamanashi 2-3 Okinawa

Aichi 5-0 Hiroshima

Shiga 0-5 Ishikawa

Ibaraki 2-3 Kumamoto

Tokushima 0-5 Fukui

Saitama 2-3 Chiba

Tochigi 3-2 Mie

Miyazaki 0-5 Hyogo

Shizuoka 4-1 Wakayama

Fukuoka 5-0 Okayama

Okayama 1-4 Miyagi

Round 2:

Akita 5-0 Toyama

Kyoto 4-1 Kagawa

Nara 2-3 Saga

Iwate 2-3 Gunma

Ehime 3-2 Yamagata

Kagoshima 3-2 Niigata

Kochi 5-0 Nagasaki

Yamaguchi 3-2 Shimane

Gifu 5-0 Hokkaido

Osaka 2-3 Okinawa

Fukushima 5-0 Hiroshima

Nagano 3-2 Ishikawa

Aomori 2-3 Kumamoto

Yamanashi 0-5 Fukui

Aichi 1-4 Chiba

Shiga 1-4 Mie

Ibaraki 2-3 Hyogo

Tokushima 1-4 Wakayama

Saitama 5-0 Okayama

Tochigi 1-4 Miyagi

Miyazaki 0-5 Tokyo

Shizuoka 1-4 Oita

Fukuoka 3-2 Kanagawa

Yamanashi 0-5 Tottori

Round 3:

Akita 5-0 Yamagata

Kyoto 3-2 Niigata

Nara 0-5 Nagasaki

Iwate 4-1 Shimane

Ehime 3-2 Hokkaido

Kagoshima 3-2 Okinawa

Kochi 5-0 Hiroshima

Yamaguchi 0-5 Ishikawa

Gifu 3-2 Kumamoto

Osaka 2-3 Fukui

Fukushima 1-4 Chiba

Nagano 4-1 Mie

Aomori 5-0 Hyogo

Yamanashi 0-5 Wakayama

Aichi 4-1 Okayama

Shiga 0-5 Miyagi

Ibaraki 2-3 Tokyo

Tokushima 0-5 Oita

Saitama 4-1 Kanagawa

Tochigi 1-4 Tottori

Miyazaki 0-5 Toyama

Shizuoka 5-0 Kagawa

Fukuoka 5-0 Saga

Kagawa 2-3 Gunma

Standings:

1 Kochi 3-0, 15 wins

2 Tottori 3-0, 14 wins

3 Fukui 3-0, 13 wins

3 Fukuoka 3-0, 13 wins

3 Miyagi 3-0, 13 wins

6 Gifu 3-0, 12 wins

6 Nagano 3-0, 12 wins

8 Chiba 3-0, 11 wins

8 Kagoshima 3-0, 11 wins

8 Tokyo 3-0, 11 wins

11 Kyoto 3-0, 10 wins

12 Akita 2-1, 12 wins

12 Aomori 2-1, 12 wins

12 Ishikawa 2-1, 12 wins

15 Oita 2-1, 11 wins

15 Saitama 2-1, 11 wins

---------------------------

17 Aichi 2-1, 10 wins

17 Shizuoka 2-1, 10 wins

17 Wakayama 2-1, 10 wins

20 Fukushima 2-1, 9 wins

21 Ehime 2-1, 8 wins

21 Gunma 2-1, 8 wins

21 Hyogo 2-1, 8 wins

21 Kumamoto 2-1, 8 wins

21 Okinawa 2-1, 8 wins

21 Toyama 2-1, 8 wins

27 Yamaguchi 2-1, 6 wins

28 Kanagawa 1-2, 8 wins

29 Mie 1-2, 7 wins

29 Nagasaki 1-2, 7 wins

29 Niigata 1-2, 7 wins

32 Iwate 1-2, 6 wins

33 Tochigi 1-2, 5 wins

34 Saga 1-2, 3 wins

35 Ibaraki 0-3, 6 wins

35 Osaka 0-3, 6 wins

37 Kagawa 0-4, 3 wins

37 Shimane 0-3, 3 wins

37 Yamagata 0-3, 3 wins

40 Hokkaido 0-3, 2 wins

40 Nara 0-3, 2 wins

40 Okayama 0-4, 2 wins

40 Yamanashi 0-4, 2 wins

44 Shiga 0-3, 1 wins

44 Tokushima 0-3, 1 wins

46 Hiroshima 0-3, 0 wins

46 Miyazaki 0-3, 0 wins

The draw worked out rather competitively this year; in 2011 no less than 9 squads had finished with 14 or 15 wins. That also means that a lot fewer rikishi escaped with a clean slate for tomorrow's individual competition, after 63 participants last year we'll be seeing only 48 this time around.

Edited by Asashosakari

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Adult team prelims:

Round 1:

Ishikawa 3-0 Tokushima

Kagawa 0-3 Chiba

Okayama 1-2 Fukui

Niigata 3-0 Mie

Fukuoka 2-1 Aomori

Shizuoka 3-0 Nagano

Oita 2-1 Hiroshima

Ehime 0-3 Fukushima

Yamanashi 0-3 Hyogo

Tochigi 0-3 Kumamoto

Saitama 3-0 Okinawa

Osaka 0-3 Iwate

Toyama 2-1 Aichi

Shiga 1-2 Kochi

Akita 0-3 Kyoto

Miyazaki 1-2 Kagoshima

Nara 0-3 Tottori

Gunma 1-2 Tokyo

Wakayama 3-0 Hokkaido

Yamagata 2-1 Kanagawa

Saga 2-1 Shimane

Nagasaki 1-2 Gifu

Yamaguchi 2-1 Miyagi

Tochigi 1-2 Ibaraki

Round 2:

Ishikawa 3-0 Aomori

Kagawa 1-2 Nagano

Okayama 2-1 Hiroshima

Niigata 2-1 Fukushima

Fukuoka 1-2 Hyogo

Shizuoka 1-2 Kumamoto

Oita 3-0 Okinawa

Ehime 1-2 Iwate

Yamanashi 1-2 Aichi

Tochigi 0-3 Kochi

Saitama 2-1 Kyoto

Osaka 1-2 Kagoshima

Toyama 1-2 Tottori

Shiga 0-3 Tokyo

Akita 3-0 Hokkaido

Miyazaki 1-2 Kanagawa

Nara 2-1 Shimane

Gunma 0-3 Gifu

Wakayama 3-0 Miyagi

Yamagata 2-1 Ibaraki

Saga 2-1 Tokushima

Nagasaki 2-1 Chiba

Yamaguchi 2-1 Fukui

Shiga 1-2 Mie

Round 3:

Ishikawa 2-1 Hyogo

Kagawa 0-3 Kumamoto

Okayama 1-2 Okinawa

Niigata 3-0 Iwate

Fukuoka 3-0 Aichi

Shizuoka 2-1 Kochi

Oita 1-2 Kyoto

Ehime 2-1 Kagoshima

Yamanashi 0-3 Tottori

Tochigi 0-3 Tokyo

Saitama 3-0 Hokkaido

Osaka 1-2 Kanagawa

Toyama 3-0 Shimane

Shiga 0-3 Gifu

Akita 3-0 Miyagi

Miyazaki 0-3 Ibaraki

Nara 3-0 Tokushima

Gunma 0-3 Chiba

Wakayama 3-0 Fukui

Yamagata 2-1 Mie

Saga 2-1 Aomori

Nagasaki 2-1 Nagano

Yamaguchi 3-0 Hiroshima

Yamanashi 0-3 Fukushima

Standings:

1 Wakayama 3-0, 9 wins (Tomita 元 3, Tomita 有 3, Sekizawa 3)

2 Gifu 3-0, 8 wins (Kimura 3, Kamiyama 2, Yasuda 3)

2 Ishikawa 3-0, 8 wins (Arakizeki 3, Endo 3, Sakashita 2)

2 Kumamoto 3-0, 8 wins (Shodai 3, Yamamoto 2, Yoshida 3)

2 Niigata 3-0, 8 wins (Murayama 3, Matsunaga 2, Kaneko 3)

2 Saitama 3-0, 8 wins (Abiko 3, Tsushima 2, Enomoto 3)

2 Tokyo 3-0, 8 wins (Nakamura 智 3, Nakamura 大 3, Morishige 2)

2 Tottori 3-0, 8 wins (Sasaki 2, Ishiura 3, Kokumae 3)

9 Yamaguchi 3-0, 7 wins (Nakamura 3, Kitamura 1, Inamura 3)

10 Saga 3-0, 6 wins (Kawaguchi 2, Kita 3, Matsuo 1)

10 Yamagata 3-0, 6 wins (Kato 慧 0, Onodera 3, Kato 隼 3)

12 Chiba 2-1, 7 wins (Kasamatsu 3, Hagiwara 2, Teramoto 2)

12 Fukushima 2-1, 7 wins (Saito 2, Usui 3, Nihei 2)

14 Akita 2-1, 6 wins (Shibuya 2, Nishikata 2, Yasuda 2)

14 Fukuoka 2-1, 6 wins (Ichinose 1, Hashimoto 3, Mitsunaga 2)

14 Hyogo 2-1, 6 wins (Ozaki 2, Masuda 1, Hashimoto 3)

14 Ibaraki 2-1, 6 wins (Haga 3, Yamamoto 1, Masuko 2)

14 Kochi 2-1, 6 wins (Uehara 3, Teramura 2, Komatsu 1)

14 Kyoto 2-1, 6 wins (Maekawa 2, Teshima 3, Takane 1)

14 Oita 2-1, 6 wins (Takada 1, Himeno 2, Nakamura 3)

14 Shizuoka 2-1, 6 wins (Mizuno 1, Narikawa 3, Kato 2)

14 Toyama 2-1, 6 wins (Hori 3, Tanimura 1, Kurokawa 2)

---------------------------------------------------------------------

23 Iwate 2-1, 5 wins (Endo 1, Igarashi 2, Satodate 2)

23 Kagoshima 2-1, 5 wins (Saigusa 2, Sakamoto 3, Miyashita 0)

23 Kanagawa 2-1, 5 wins (Fujita 3, Nikamoto 1, Kubota 1)

23 Nagasaki 2-1, 5 wins (Tanaka 1, Noguchi 3, Matsunaga 1)

23 Nara 2-1, 5 wins (Fujiwara 1, Sugiura 2, Nishio 2)

28 Okayama 1-2, 4 wins (Yoshioka 1, Tsumura 3, Yamaguchi 0)

29 Aichi 1-2, 3 wins (Nishimura 0, Yoshida 2, Takayama 1)

29 Ehime 1-2, 3 wins (Haraikawa 2, Kamatani 0, Kajiwara 1)

29 Fukui 1-2, 3 wins (Uenaka 1, Katsura 1, Murata 1)

29 Mie 1-2, 3 wins (Takita 2, Shimozato 1, Seko 0)

29 Nagano 1-2, 3 wins (Hanamura 0, Ishizaka 1, Yokoyama 2)

34 Okinawa 1-2, 2 wins (Yamamoto 1, Yamashiro 0, Shimabukuro 1)

34 Aomori 0-3, 2 wins (Kudo 1, Ito 0, Tomita 1)

34 Hiroshima 0-3, 2 wins (Nagao 1, ---, Tanizaki 1)

34 Miyazaki 0-3, 2 wins (Nakamura 0, Beppu 1, Hori 1)

34 Osaka 0-3, 2 wins (Oki 0, Ishiguro 0, Maeda 2)

34 Shiga 0-4, 2 wins (Ogawa 0, Kawasaki 0, Tsuji 2)

34 Shimane 0-3, 2 wins (Ikeda 2, Tanaka 0, Uno 0)

41 Gunma 0-3, 1 wins (Miyasaka 0, Murakami 0, Tanaka 1)

41 Kagawa 0-3, 1 wins (Katanaga 1, Horie 0, Ryuman 0)

41 Miyagi 0-3, 1 wins (Sugawara 0, Sekikawa 1, Mori 0)

41 Tochigi 0-4, 1 wins (Kitahara 0, Fukuda 1, Nagasawa 0)

41 Tokushima 0-3, 1 wins (Honda 0, Mima 0, Matsumura 1)

41 Yamanashi 0-4, 1 wins (Fujimoto 1, Ishikawa 0, Komachi 0)

47 Hokkaido 0-3, 0 wins (Kanazawa 0, Yamamoto 0, Shirao 0)

The 9-way tie for the last 3 playoff spots was broken through the following matchups:

Top 16 tie-breakers:

Akita 2-1 Fukuoka

Shizuoka 2-1 Oita

Ibaraki 2-1 Kyoto

Toyama 2-1 Akita

Hyogo 2-1 Shizuoka

Kochi 2-0 Ibaraki

Here, too, the draw was more competitive again overall with only 10 3-0 teams (last year 14, with four 9-win squads). Nevertheless, tomorrow's fight for the individual title will actually see a larger field than last year (36, up from 34), as many prefectures with overall middling results ended up having a rikishi who went 3-0 in his bouts. All in all 25 prefectures will be represented in the individual competition. Incidentally, no less than four of the qualifiers are named Nakamura.

The surprise of the prelims has to be the Saga team, which I remember as pretty hapless in all previous years (in 2011 they went 1-11). Three 2-1's this time around. Defending champion Toyama - with the same team as last year - barely made it in via the 9-way tiebreaker. 2011 runner-up Oita weren't so lucky and are out already, while last year's semifinalists Kumamoto (with reigning university yokozuna Naoya Shodai) and Wakayama made short work of it.

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And now for the individual results. The juniors, name readings to be taken with the usual grain of salt:

Qualifiers:

Aoyama Masashi Kyoto, Kyoto-shi Toba HS

Fujiwara Kotaro Saitama, Saitama-shi Sakae HS

Furusawa Daiki Fukui, Fukui-shi Agricultural & Forestry HS

Hiroshima Chikara Fukuoka, Nakama-shi Kibogaoka HS

Horikiri Kosuke Chiba, Nagareyama-shi Minami HS

Ihara Kazunari Shizuoka, Mishima-shi Hiryu HS

Inui Rikito Fukui, Ono-shi Okuetsu Meisei HS

Ito Haraki Fukuoka, Nakama-shi Kibogaoka HS

Ito Masayuki Ehime, Seiyo-shi Nomura HS

Iwasa Yutaro Fukui, Fukui-shi Agricultural & Forestry HS

Katsuyama Mitsuo Okinawa, Uruma-shi Chubu Agricultural & Forestry HS

Kawamoto So Wakayama, Arida-shi Minoshima HS

Kawamura Shohei Kyoto, Kyoto-shi Hiyoshigaoka HS

Kawasaki Hiroki Kochi, Kochi-shi Technical HS

Kitamura Naoki Nagano, Nagano-shi Sarashina Agricultural HS

Kizaki Shinnosuke Tottori, Tottori-shi Johoku HS

Matsunaga Shuzo Fukuoka, Nakama-shi Kibogaoka HS

Minami Tomota Kanagawa, Kawasaki-shi Mukainooka Technical HS

Miwa Hayato Niigata, Itoigawa-shi Kaiyo HS

Mizuta Kento Tottori, Tottori-shi Johoku HS

Motobayashi Kenji Osaka, Higashiosaka-shi Kinki University HS

Nagano Shota Kochi, Kochi-shi Technical HS

Nagao Yuki Gifu, Kitagata-cho Agricultural & Forestry HS

Nakai Shun Kochi, Susaki-shi Meitoku Gijuku HS

Nakashima Hiroki Aichi, Nagoya-shi Aichi Institute of Technology Meiden HS

Nakashima Nozomi Tottori, Tottori-shi Johoku HS

Nishi Taisei Kochi, Susaki-shi Meitoku Gijuku HS

Nogami Kengo Oita, Nakatsu-shi Higashi HS

Noguchi Takuma Oita, Hita-shi Forestry & Technical HS

Oba Katsutaro Kumamoto, Kumamoto-shi Buntoku HS

Obata Kutaka Miyagi, Misato-machi Kogota Agricultural & Forestry HS

Onami Atsushi Fukushima, Fukushima-shi Shoin Gakuen HS

Sakae Toshiki Kagoshima, Kagoshima-shi Commercial HS

Sato Katsunari Miyagi, Shikama-cho Kami Agricultural HS

Shibaoka Yoshiki Kochi, Kochi-shi Technical HS

Shibata Tetsuya Nagano, Kiso-machi Seiho HS

Shijirbayar Chiba, Nagareyama-shi Minami HS

Shinbo Kyoya Aomori, Ajigasawa-machi HS

Sugawara Jun Miyagi, Misato-machi Kogota Agricultural & Forestry HS

Suzuki Genta Akita, Yokote-shi HS

Suzuki Takumi Tokyo, Meguro-ku Gakuen HS

Takahashi Masatoshi Gunma, Kiryu-shi Jutoku HS

Tanabe Hironobu Ishikawa, Kanazawa-shi Gakuin Higashi HS

Turbold Tottori, Tottori-shi Johoku HS

Ukawa Yoshiki Ishikawa, Kanazawa Technical HS

Utetsu Fumiya Aomori, Towada-shi Sanbongi Agricultural HS

Wakabayashi Kai Gifu, Kitagata-cho Agricultural & Forestry HS

Yasuda So Akita, Akita-shi Kanaashi Agricultural HS

Prelims:

Nishi uwatenage Suzuki G.

Kawamoto yorikiri Ihara

Turbold sukuinage Minami

Furusawa oshidashi Sugawara

Tanabe uwatedashinage Sato

Shinbo kotenage Shibata

Nakashima N. oshidashi Shibaoka

Wakabayashi hatakikomi Takahashi

Nakai oshidashi Fujiwara

Suzuki T. uwatedashinage Iwasa

Mizuta oshidashi Horikiri

Nakashima H. tsukiotoshi Obata

Inui uwatenage Kizaki

Miwa hatakikomi Motobayashi

Ito M. uwatenage Aoyama

Nagano yorikiri Yasuda

Round of 32:

Shijirbayar uwatenage Nishi

Kawamoto kotenage Oba

Turbold tsuridashi Kawamura

Ito H. tsukiotoshi Furusawa

Tanabe oshitaoshi Nogami

Shinbo yoritaoshi Onami

Sakae shitatehiheri Nakashima N.

Wakabayashi yoritaoshi Hiroshima

Matsunaga uwatenage Nakai

Kitamura yorikiri Suzuki T.

Mizuta uwatenage Noguchi

Kawasaki okuridashi Nakashima H.

Ukawa shitatedashinage Inui

Nagao oshidashi Miwa

Ito M. uwatenage Katsuyama

Utetsu hatakikomi Nagano

Round of 16:

Shijirbayar tsukiotoshi Kawamoto

Turbold hatakikomi Ito H.

Shinbo yorikiri Tanabe

Sakae oshidashi Wakabayashi

Kitamura uwatenage Matsunaga

Mizuta abisetaoshi Kawasaki

Nagao uchimuso Ukawa

Utetsu hatakikomi Ito M.

Quarterfinals:

Turbold yorikiri Shijirbayar

Shinbo uwatenage Sakae

Mizuta uwatenage Kitamura

Utetsu tsukidashi Nagao

Semifinals:

Turbold uwatenage Shinbo

Utetsu yorikiri Mizuta

Third Place:

Shinbo yoritaoshi Mizuta

Final:

Utetsu tsukiotoshi Turbold

A great showing for Aomori prefecture with winner Utetsu and third-place Shinbo, and not quite unexpectedly also for Tottori with 2nd and 4th place. Utetsu (previously mentioned winning a regional tournament a few weeks ago) has been cleaning up in high-profile amateur events for the last few years, and Shinbo may be coming back into prominence after being a big name back in his wampaku days, so perhaps an Aomori resurgence in the professional ranks may be on the way. It'll be a bit longer though as they're only in 1st grade (Utetsu) and 2nd grade (Shinbo) of high school yet, respectively.

Turbold is a 3rd grade student at powerhouse Tottori Johoku and after this showing one should probably start wondering if we'll be seeing him in a heya come next March. At 187 cm / 135 kg and reportedly inspired to come to Japan by Hakuho's example, it's probably a safe bet that he's interested in turning pro. If somebody wants to translate his quotes from the article, I'd appreciate it. (Incidentally, Tottori Johoku has another Mongolian student in its sumo club, fellow 3rd grader Ichinnorov - after being runner-up in last year's Kokutai individual category he wasn't part of the Tottori prefectural squad this year. Not sure if he's injured or just didn't make the cut in their high-powered team.)

Turbold narrowly missed making it a repeat title for Tottori after Shinji Kizaki's victory in 2011; instead the crown returns to Aomori after two years (to the same school, in fact), the 2010 winner Hasegawa having been from Sanbongi HS as well. For anyone wondering, Kizaki is at Nihon University now, Hasegawa at Tokyo Nogyo.

BTW, Fukushima prefecture's Onami is probably yet another brother of Arashio-beya's Onami and Goshi. I'm not sure which grade he is in, but I wouldn't be surprised if he's joining them after graduating.

Not a whole lot of pictorial evidence this year, but the above article does have this pic of the decision in the Utetsu-Turbold final:

5347030943.jpg

Oh, here's another one, from the Utetsu-Mizuta semifinal (Utetsu on the right):

img12100209top_l.jpg

Edited by Asashosakari
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And last not least, the adult individual championship:

Qualifiers:

Abiko Kentaro Saitama, Nihon University (3rd year)

Arakizeki Kengo Ishikawa, Toyo University faculty

Endo Masahiro Ishikawa, Nihon University (4th year)

Enomoto Shota Saitama, Nippon Express

Fujita Katsuhiro Kanagawa, Kamakura-shi Fukasawa Retirement Care

Haga Shoma Ibaraki, Toyo University (3rd year)

Hashimoto Seiya Hyogo, Nishinomiya-shi Hotoku Gakuen HS faculty

Hashimoto Takahiro Fukuoka, Kyushu Electric

Hori Atsushi Toyama, Aisin Light Metals

Inamura Masato Yamaguchi, Toyoura-shi Comprehensive Support School faculty

Ishiura Masakatsu Tottori, Tottori Prefectural Federation

Kaneko Tatsuya Niigata, Niigata Prefectural Federation

Kasamatsu Ryota Chiba, Takushoku University (4th year)

Kato Jun Yamagata, Shinjo-shi School for the Handicapped faculty

Kimura Yu Gifu, Gifu-shi Motosu Special Support School faculty

Kita Kyohei Saga, Kyushu Torishima

Kokumae Tatsunori Tottori, Nihon University faculty

Murayama Taiyo Niigata, Nihon Taiiku University (3rd year)

Nakamura Daiki Tokyo, Nihon Taiiku University (2nd year)

Nakamura Naoki Oita, Nakatsu-shi Sanko MS faculty

Nakamura Tomoaki Tokyo, Katsushika-ku Yotsugi MS faculty

Nakamura Yuta Yamaguchi, Toyoura-shi Comprehensive Support School faculty

Narikawa Teru Shizuoka, Yaizu-shi municipal office

Noguchi Kiyoyuki Nagasaki, Nihon University (4th year)

Onodera Takashi Yamagata, Tsuruoka-shi Haguro MS faculty

Sakamoto Motoki Kagoshima, Nihon University (2nd year)

Sekizawa Hideyuki Wakayama, Wakayama prefectural office

Shodai Naoya Kumamoto, Tokyo Nogyo University (3rd year)

Teshima Shingo Kyoto, Kyoto-shi water works department

Tomita Motoki Wakayama, Wakayama prefectural office

Tomita Yuki Wakayama, Wakayama prefectural office

Tsumura Masahito Okayama, Shinagawa Refractories

Uehara Kensei Kochi, Kochi-shi Wakakusa School for the Handicapped faculty

Usui Yuki Fukushima, Aizubange-machi Aizu Agricultural & Forestry HS faculty

Yasuda Tatsuhiro Gifu, Gifu-shi Nagara Special Support School faculty

Yoshida Katsuo Kumamoto, Kyushu Electric

Prelims:

Abiko tsukidashi Shodai

Nakamura T. ashitori Usui

Haga oshidashi Kita

Enomoto yorikiri Yoshida

Round of 32:

Ishiura zubuneri Fujita

Hashimoto S. fusen Kato

Yasuda sotogake Sekizawa

Abiko tsukiotoshi Nakamura Y.

Endo yorikiri Nakamura N.

Tomita M. yorikiri Teshima

Sakamoto yorikiri Kasamatsu

Nakamura T. sotogake Murayama

Arakizeki oshidashi Tomita Y.

Inamura oshitaoshi Kimura

Onodera yorikiri Kaneko

Kokumae hatakikomi Haga

Narikawa hatakikomi Tsumura

Uehara yoritaoshi Noguchi

Nakamura D. yorikiri Hashimoto T.

Hori tsukidashi Enomoto

Round of 16:

Hashimoto S. oshidashi Ishiura

Yasuda oshidashi Abiko

Endo uwatenage Tomita M.

Nakamura T. okuridashi Sakamoto

Arakizeki yorikiri Inamura

Kokumae uwatenage Onodera

Uehara oshitaoshi Narikawa

Nakamura D. oshidashi Hori

Quarterfinals:

Yasuda oshidashi Hashimoto S.

Endo oshidashi Nakamura T.

Arakizeki oshidashi Kokumae

Uehara oshidashi Nakamura D.

Semifinals:

Endo oshitaoshi Yasuda

Arakizeki sukuinage Uehara

Third Place:

Yasuda okuritaoshi Uehara

Final:

Endo yorikiri Arakizeki

Hurray, the winner is a university senior! According to Daily Sports Masahiro Endo hasn't definitely decided to turn pro yet, but is strongly considering it, and with the Ms15Td start in his hands now, one probably has to consider it a safe bet that we'll be seeing him on the dohyo in January or March. (Barring another cancelled basho or two.) At 183 cm / 145 kg he certainly brings the physical tools for it. Nice variety in his winning techniques, too...

Having won the team crown with the Ishikawa squad earlier in the day it's a double success for Endo. In fact, Ishikawa pretty much ran roughshod over the adult competition here with runner-up Kengo Arakizeki also competing out of that prefecture. Arakizeki continues to be one of the most prominent names on the amateur circuit, adding on another top finish to his Kokutai 3rd place last year and recent strong results in the All-Japan Championship (quarterfinal 2011, runner-up 2010). Apparently he has also been the business league yokozuna the last two years...dang, I wonder what he could have done as a pro. Looking at last year's Kokutai updates, Arakizeki has now qualified for the playoffs (at least) four straight times, which given the crapshoot nature of this tournament is just outstanding. (Then again, so has Yu Kimura who hasn't done much after getting there...total record 1-4 in these four playoffs.)

But all in all, as usual not a whole lot of year-to-year consistency among the qualifiers, only 11 of the 36 were also in the playoffs in 2011. Less gakusei presence in the playoffs, too, down to 9 of 36 from 11 of 34. (Not that much should be read into that.) The 2010 high school yokozuna Daiki Nakamura continues to be one to watch; after his impressive runner-up performance as a freshman in last year's All-Japan University Championships it has to count as another big notch on the mawashi that he went into the quarterfinals here. (And refreshing my memory, he was also a quarterfinalist at the All-Japan Championship in 2010 while still a high-schooler.) Naoya Shodai, the much heralded now-3rd grader who beat Nakamura for the university yokozuna title last year wasn't so fortunate here, losing already in his first playoff bout, against "only" another collegiate rikishi no less.

Edited by Asashosakari
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Qualifiers:

Shijirbayar Chiba, Nagareyama-shi Minami HS

Another Mongolian-any details about him?

Edited by Kintamayama

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Another Mongolian-any details about him?

All I know is that he must be a senior this year as he already appeared in the national high school championship two years ago, and that he's apparently a heavyweight (according to a signup for a regional tournament), whatever that means in the high school sumo context.

Minato beya

I guess we can stop wondering, then. ;-) Thanks. (Did I get the name reading right?)

Edited by Asashosakari

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Adult yusho team Ishikawa: Arakizeki, Endo, Sakashita

sum12100305020001-p1.jpg

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Hmm, I just realized they're apparently taking a page out of the UEFA playbook and seeding individual competitors from the same prefecture into different sections of the draw...interesting.

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A great showing for Aomori prefecture with winner Utetsu and third-place Shinbo, and not quite unexpectedly also for Tottori with 2nd and 4th place. Utetsu (previously mentioned winning a regional tournament a few weeks ago) has been cleaning up in high-profile amateur events for the last few years, and Shinbo may be coming back into prominence after being a big name back in his wampaku days, so perhaps an Aomori resurgence in the professional ranks may be on the way. It'll be a bit longer though as they're only in 1st grade (Utetsu) and 2nd grade (Shinbo) of high school yet, respectively.

Rumour has it that Utetsu has quit school and will show up in the next maezumo for a yet to be determined heya. Dunno if I'm ready to believe it, but given that he's one of the highest-profile names at the pre-university amateur levels right now, I figure it's worth mentioning just in case.

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