Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Not since 2006???

A Japanese sumo wrestler has not won the tournament since 2006. Seriously?

I guess we had the era of Asashoryu, and now it's Hakuhou, both of them Mongolian sumo wonders.

During January's basho, a Japanese wrestler, Kisenosato, was promoted to Ozeki (champ, the rank just below Yokozuna, which is Grand Champion, the highest rank in sumo.) For a while NO Japanese occupied the top two ranks!

In September after the basho in Tokyo, Kotoshogiku (another Japanese) was promoted to Ozeki, but before that, it was all foreigners.

The year 2011 was a rocky one for sumo and some fans lost their fire for the sport after a bout-fixing scandal. And there was the baseball scandal. And that came after the brutal 2007 beating of the Japanese recruit that resulted in his death.

Sumo needs to shape up! Shape up for the fans! Maybe with some fresh, native blood in the top ranks there will be an increased interest in the show. I hope so~


  1. My cousin, Ty Hopkins, was a sumo wrestler in Japan in Akebono's stable from the late 1980s to about 1997. His wrestling name was Sunahama Shoji (they used to call his mother Sunahama Mama) and he ended his career as Juryo 5. He has lots of wild stories about things Japanese men would do to get into the sport such as getting silicone implants in the tops of their heads to meet minimum height requirements. I think Japanese wrestlers have a great desire to compete, but when sumo opened up to the world, the sheer size and power of the competition really amped up. I agree it would be fantastic to have a native born son as champion again.

  2. wOw! Lehua! That is so cool to know about! I have never heard of the silicone implants on the tops of the heads. Fascinating. Someday I'd love to visit with your cousin, if you think he would talk to me! So cool. Thanks so much for commenting!