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Exil

Featured Rikishi - Otsukasa

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(It's been a while since we've had a featured rikishi, so Rijicho instructed me to pick a completely random rikishi to revive the tradition. So, I put all the rikishi in a big hat and completely randomly picked a random Otsukasa rikishi. (Applauding...))

Otsukasa!

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Otsupotsu! One of those competely invisible rikishi until you actually do notice them (for me it was his heroic fight against yokozuna Musashimaru - I've forgotten the outcome, but not the never-say-die intensity with which Otsu wrestled). I (Heart) Otsu... unfortunately, I can't add much more about him.

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Born February 18, 1971, Otsukasa (real name: Nobuhide Ohuchi) wanted to become a rikishi ever since he was a little kid as his father and grandfather were passionate sumo fans.. He seriously started sumo training when he entered Miki Middle School in his native Kyoto Prefecture. He continued his sumo club activity at Ichikawa High School and contributed to their team winning national level high schooll sumo championships. He joined the famed NIhon University Sumo Club and did well at All Japan Sumo Tournaments as a member of the club. He was one year junior of Ohinode at Ichikawa High and Nichi-Dai.

He joined Irumagawa Beya and his dohyo debut at the 1993 Haru Basho after receiving a Makushita Tsukedashi designation. Initially because of his smallish physique, he could not win against bigger rikishis but he soon learned a few ways to counter attack their power by keep moving around and managed to win a Makushita Yusho.

He was promoted to Juryo at the 1996 January Basho and changed his shikona to Otsukasa from Ohuchi which is his real family name. In the 1999 May Basho he won Juryo Yusho and in September of the same year he was promoted to Makuuchi for the first time. He won his second Juryo Yusho at the 2005 January Basho.

With Kotonowaka's retirement at the 2005 November Basho, he has become the oldest active sekitori and oldest active Makuuchi rikishi now.

He has never won a Sansho. His highest rank was Maegashira West 4 at the 2001 July Basho.

He often reminds me of a wily cat perhaps because of his mastery of "Neko Damashi" technique.

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Including the Haru basho this year his Makuuchi record is 155 wins and 220 losses in 25 basho. He has 10 KK in Makuuchi but all of them have been 8-7. He obviously does enough to get by!

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I almost got taken to visit Irumagawa-beya in Saitama in 2001. The nice folks I was staying with said they knew someone there but the Haru-basho had just ended and the heya was busy with more important things so visitations were discouraged.

As this fell through, I have never actually visited any heya.

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A small and unimportant remark:

In the German Comic Series "Mosaik" (once the most important Comic in the German Democratic Republic) the heroes went to visit 19th Century Japan and visit a heya as well. Once they get to see a fight between to guys named "Takanonami" and "Otsukasa". Seems, that one Comic-Author and Sumo-Fan gave his favourite rikishi a small appearance. ;)

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He seriously started sumo training when he entered Miki Middle School in his native Kyoto Prefecture.

I had an Air Force student (50ish) who said Otsukasa was his favorite rikishi and he only rooted for Otsukasa because Otsukasa was from his hometown of Kobe (not in Kyoto prefecture).

What's up with that? Was my student mistaken?

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I think it is a typo and he means Hyogo.

(Kobe is in Hyogo of course, as is Miki)

Edited by Naganoyama

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I think it is a typo and he means Hyogo.

(Kobe is in Hyogo of course, as is Miki)

Right, his shusshin is given as Hyogo-ken, Miki-shi.

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I just noticed how old Otsukasa is. He's really lasted a long time in the top 2 divisions. Although he's not very tall and is very fat, he's technically very good and capitalizes quite well on an opponent's mistakes. His physical talent level just isn't high enough though, and he's really done quite well to have had such a long and respectable career in both Makunouchi and Juryo. When he retires I hope and expect that he will lose a lot of weight. I bet that he could get to less than 200 lbs. very easily with the right diet plan.

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