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January Sumo Tournament 相撲 平成22年1月 初場所

The recent January 2010 Sumo Tournament held in Ryogoku Kokugikan (Tokyo) held great promise of being one of the most exciting sumo competitions in a while until the last few days. Why? Because Ozeki-hopeful Baruto defeated all of the Ozeki and Yokozuna Hakuho (白鵬). There were several scenarios which showed Baruto winning the tournament, a rare achievement for a non-Yokozuna, non-Ozeki. There were other exciting possibilities, such as a five-way tie for first place which would have resulted in a mega-playoff on the last day, something I was hoping for since I had a ticket for the final day of the tournament.

However, Baruto was defeated by Yokozuna Asashoryu (朝青龍) and Toyonoshima (pictured above sitting down in the background) late in the tournament. Also, Hakuho was defeated by Ozeki Harumafuji and Ozeki Kaio. Both ozeki used henka (変化), a rather lame move in which the wrestler steps aside instead of confronting their opponent, to defeat Hakuho. I suppose Hakuho should have been looking for the henka technique a bit more. In any event, with Hakuho’s three losses, the only way a five-way tie for first could be achieved would be for Ozeki Harumafuji to defeat Yokozuna Asashoryu on Day 14 and Hakuho to defeat Asashoryu on the final day. The latter was very likely as Hakuho routinely beats Asashoryu these days. Harumafuji couldn’t pull off a Day 14 win, though, so there was nothing on the line on Day 15 with Asashoryu’s one loss compared to the three losses of the others.

Here is Asashoryu receiving his trophy for winning the tournament, the 25th time he has done so. I’m guessing it may be his last as both Baruto and Hakuho seem better at this point in time.

Asasekiryu 朝赤龍

And here Asashoryu is, beginning his victory parade and smiling for my camera, before heading back to his stable. Asasekiryu (朝赤龍) is by his side.

Below is a video I took of 白鵬 vs. 朝青龍 from very far away. Not only did the TZ7 do a decent job given the distance, but the battery died before I stopped recording. I thought the video wouldn’t record but it did! I guess the TZ7 has something built in that causes it to save the video with the last bit of juice. The battery really was dead. The camera wouldn’t even turn on, let alone show me if the video had recorded. I was very surprised to see the video saved on the SD card.

2 Responses to “January Sumo Tournament 相撲 平成22年1月 初場所”

  1. 1

    Thanks for the update. I’d love it if someone had a dedicated English language sumo blog (hint hint). Baruto is my favorite wrestler (with Yamamotoyama coming in a close second) and I’ve actually met him twice.

  2. 2

    I would love to do it, but I’m afraid it won’t be very good once I return to the states in August. I don’t think I’ll even have TV access to the matches after the July tournament.

    I have found a few decent sites in English though: