Kintamayama

Corona and sumo

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More than 7500 new confirmed cases yesterday. They should cancel this basho. The vaccine is coming, do the best to avoid being taken down by the virus. 

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16 minutes ago, Dapeng said:

More than 7500 new confirmed cases yesterday. They should cancel this basho. The vaccine is coming, do the best to avoid being taken down by the virus. 

I believe they will go ahead with the basho.  I just hope it ends well.

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I won't be surprised if they cancel spectators, as they did back in March. Seems like a reasonable approach  since all the personnel and rikishi are being tested this week, right?

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Posted (edited)

Well, if you believe certain outlets, the NSK is in the red and is trying to avoid digging themselves deeper with this basho. And with the state of emergency permitting the 5k spectators, they've pretty much been sanctioned to hold a spectator basho by the government, so why be a smart alec and take the initiative to play safe? 

Edited by Seiyashi
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14 minutes ago, WAKATAKE said:

And they are letting the crowds in, capping off at 5000 spectators for all 15 days

https://www.nikkansports.com/battle/sumo/news/202101080000350.html

A Kintamayama translation:

Although an emergency state  has been declared in the Tokyo area the basho will take place with 5000 spectators maximum a day for all 15 days. That is the decision for now, pending test results of all 900 Kyokai people. The original plan was to up the numbers to 5300 a day from day three, but that has been abandoned. The rest will remain as planned. Still, everyone is waiting for the test results of all 900 Kyokai people. "We'll get the results, discuss them with the doctors and the executive committee and decide what to do and how in the event of unfavorable results. in the meantime we are not there yet and there is no indication of that happening so it is not an issue... Although the Miyagino beya people were found negative, we need to check this out again thoroughly and Kyokai-widely, to make sure we know where we stand health-wise.." said Shibatayama Oyakata PR man.

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So if a significant number of deshi test positive, I suppose that it will be cancelled?

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48 minutes ago, rhyen said:

So if a significant number of deshi test positive, I suppose that it will be cancelled?

I wonder what the threshold is? I guess we'll find out tomorrow with all of those test results. 

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I suspect that at least 10 of the rikishi will test positive. Whether they are concentrated in a heya or spread out will matter more than the numbers.

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The Kyokai seems to be looking at the situation stable by stable, rather than across the board. Hopefully as rikishi pop positive they just put individual stables kyujo rather than the whole sport. 

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Posted (edited)

The virus tests results are in and it is not pretty.. Kokonoe beya, Arashio beya, Tomozuna beya, Miyagino beya- all members out. No less than 15 sekitori out. Juryo will have nine daily bouts instead of 14 and Makuuchi will have 18 instead of 21. Actually infected are Chiyoshouma, Chiyoootori, and two lower rankers from Kokonoe, causing the whole heya to go kyujo, including the  Oyakata and gyoji Kimura Ryuunosuke and hairdressers.  One lower ranker from Tomozuna, the whole heya is out, including the Oyakatas. Arashio beya and Miyagino beya (including Hakuhou, Enhou and Ishiura)  and everyone else from last week’s infections and Gyoji Kimura Motoki from Minato beya. 65 rikishi in all across the banzuke. “Our foremost concern is the safety of the fans.There was no contact between the heya so the outbreak was contained inside the respective heyas. The virus has exploded in one metropolitan area and three prefectures. We don’t want any serious outbreaks here. I think it was a great idea to do the tests.If someone gets infected during the basho we may have no choice but to stop the basho,” he explained

Edited by Kintamayama
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Oguruma Oyakata: “At some point the possibility of canceling the basho was brought up but it was decided to leave it to the chairman to decide. If the infection was more widespread we probably would have called it off..”

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5000 fans in an indoor arena for 15 days.  Don't they know wearing a mask is not foolproof (although it helps quite a bit)?     And the fast-spreading UK virus is already in Japan.    What is the odd of the basho finishing without a COVID19 incident?   So many juyro and makucchi rikishi are out which cheapens the basho.   This is a clear case of money over common sense.   Then again, it is not very surprising given the characters involved.

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31 minutes ago, robnplunder said:

5000 fans in an indoor arena for 15 days.  Don't they know wearing a mask is not foolproof (although it helps quite a bit)?     And the fast-spreading UK virus is already in Japan.    What is the odd of the basho finishing without a COVID19 incident?   So many juyro and makucchi rikishi are out which cheapens the basho.   This is a clear case of money over common sense.   Then again, it is not very surprising given the characters involved.

I have got to agree. Miyagino and Arashio being sidelined was sad, Kokonoe and Tomozuna being out as well just elevates it to farce.

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Kotokantetsu was forced to retire after he expressed his desire not to do any sumo this basho at the Kokugikan amid the pandemic but was told either to participate or to retire, so he chose latter. Source

Japan has not handled this properly. So, JSA does not deviate from the norm - all for the Olympics which would be very hard to happen. Mindo ga takai, ne (Aso, Deputy preme minister, remark that the Japanese are better than other peoples and that was the reason for their lower positive results last spring)

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1 minute ago, I am the Yokozuna said:

Kotokantetsu was forced to retire after he expressed his desire not to do any sumo this basho at the Kokugikan amid the pandemic but was told either to participate or to retire, so he chose latter. Source

Japan has not handled this properly. So, JSA does not deviate from the norm - all for the Olympics which would be very hard to happen. Mindo ga takai, ne (Aso, Deputy preme minister, remark that the Japanese are better than other peoples and that was the reason for their lower positive results last spring)

It gets better. Because he used Twitter to announce his retirement, they are wondering how he was able to use social media to talk about sumo. Cue Chris Gould and Takatoriki!

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Posted (edited)
46 minutes ago, I am the Yokozuna said:

Kotokantetsu was forced to retire after he expressed his desire not to do any sumo this basho at the Kokugikan amid the pandemic but was told either to participate or to retire, so he chose latter. Source

Japan has not handled this properly. So, JSA does not deviate from the norm - all for the Olympics which would be very hard to happen. Mindo ga takai, ne (Aso, Deputy preme minister, remark that the Japanese are better than other peoples and that was the reason for their lower positive results last spring)

Wow!  If Kotokantetsu story is true, it is sad. 

The deputy prime minister said that?  If that is the case, so many other peoples (those who are doing better than Japan in handling COVID19) are superior to Japanese people.   What an idiotic thing to say for someone like him!

Back to sumo ... I hope people restrain from attending the event and watch it from the safety of their home.  Large 4k TV is perfect for the sumo.

Edited by robnplunder

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, Kintamayama said:

... "If the infection was more widespread we probably would have called it off..” - Oguruma Oyakata

Wow, more widespread?? The list is already pretty horrendous. It's clear that the need for revenue is the overarching concern rather than common sense as @robnplunder has said. Last year's basho cancellation and the subsequent bans on spectators came at a time when the virus seemed to be less prevalent in the sumo world (even with the awful death of Shobushi). Now the virus is really spreading through the rikishi, the JSA wants to plod along with a basho and spectators even though it has been shown this week that their safety processes aren't foolproof. We all want to see sumo but I for one, don't want to see rikishi deaths as a result. I really hope this goes OK.

Edited by Karasukurai
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So, let me get this straight. After Hakuho tested positive, that's when they suddenly decided "maybe we should test everybody"? I wasn't sure on this before, but it does sound like they weren't planning on running these tests until they announced they would do so. ("I think it was a great idea to do the tests." from Kintamayama's article quote.)

Does that mean they were close to letting a bunch of people infected with coronavirus participate, never testing them because they never complained of symptoms? Again, please tell me if I'm wrong.

At this point the basho sounds like it will be an infamous one. With so many wrestlers out it's going to be difficult to make matches, and even more difficult to calculate new ranks afterwards assuming all coronavirus absentees will have their ranks frozen.

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1 hour ago, dada78641 said:

With so many wrestlers out it's going to be difficult to make matches, and even more difficult to calculate new ranks afterwards assuming all coronavirus absentees will have their ranks frozen.

This. We are entering into farce territory, not to mention risking a public health disaster. 

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7 hours ago, I am the Yokozuna said:

Kotokantetsu was forced to retire after he expressed his desire not to do any sumo this basho at the Kokugikan amid the pandemic but was told either to participate or to retire, so he chose latter. Source

Japan has not handled this properly. So, JSA does not deviate from the norm - all for the Olympics which would be very hard to happen. Mindo ga takai, ne (Aso, Deputy preme minister, remark that the Japanese are better than other peoples and that was the reason for their lower positive results last spring)

I am missing a detail, which I haven't found neither here nor on other channels:

Has Kotokantetsu asked for a normal kyujo (with the regular drop in rank) and was denied, or to stay away from the tournament out of fear to contract the virus and keep his rank like the ones already infected?

If the latter was the case, a denial of kyujo doesn't come as a surprise. If he had handed in a regular kyujo notice for whatever injury, that would have also done the trick to stay away. Looks like he wanted to play with open cards and we have to respect his decision not to be part of the NSK anymore. Very weird scenario!!

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Posted (edited)
8 hours ago, I am the Yokozuna said:

Kotokantetsu was forced to retire after he expressed his desire not to do any sumo this basho at the Kokugikan amid the pandemic but was told either to participate or to retire, so he chose latter. Source

Japan has not handled this properly. So, JSA does not deviate from the norm - all for the Olympics which would be very hard to happen. Mindo ga takai, ne (Aso, Deputy preme minister, remark that the Japanese are better than other peoples and that was the reason for their lower positive results last spring)

More details:

Jonidan rikishi Kotokantetsu tweeted his retirement today, saying he asked to go kyujo this basho because of his fear of contracting the virus, but was told he had to enter, so he retired. "I have retired today. I'm afraid to travel to Ryogoku because of the virus, so I asked my stablemaster Sadogatake Oyakata to be allowed to go kyujo. The answer I got from the Kyokai was that fear of the virus was not a  valid reason to go kyujo. Being left with a choice of entering or not, I knew i wouldn't be able to patiently do sumo while the virus was scaring me, so I chose to quit," he wrote. Mr. Takada Miyata, manager at the Kyokai, acknowledged that he received this request from Sadogatake Oyakata. He explained that only rikishi who were tested negative for the virus could enter the basho (what has that got to do with anything?) and added that to be kyujo, you needed a medical certificate. "Please ask Mr. Takada Miyata if you want further details," is what Sadogatake answered when asked what happened there. As we know, rikishi are not allowed to use social media , yet Kotokanketsu tweeted about his intai. "I think that ban ended when I retired, " he said. It seems the retirement papers were already handed over to the Kyokai. He has changed his Twitter account name to his own name.

Edited by Kintamayama
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