Kisenosato Recommended For Promotion To Yokozuna


Yokozuna Deliberation Council Approves Unanimously

In a move that has been expected since the end of the Hatsu basho, the Yokozuna Deliberation Council has met on Monday January 23rd at the Kokugikan, and after only 10 minutes of discussion, unanimously approved Kisenosato as the 72nd Yokozuna. He will be the first Japanese man to take the rope since 1998 when it was given to the 66th Yokozuna Wakanohana.

The meeting on the 23rd was held as an “extraordinary session” at request of the Shimpan of the Japan Sumo Association, and was conducted by its chairman Nobuyoshi Hakkaku. Based on that decision, the Sumo Association will decide Kisenosato’s promotion during a meeting of the directors on the 25th.

Official notification is expected to be delivered to the stable later on Wednesday, with all of the pomp and ceremony associated with elevation to Grand Champion. Word in the press is that retired Yokozuna Ōnokuni has offered to teach Kisenosato the ritual of Yokozuna dohyo-iri. It is expected that Yokozuna Kisenosato will adopt the Unryu style, which focuses on defense, and is practiced by Yokozuna Kakuryu, and legendary Yokozuna Takanohana.

Tachiai congratulates Kisenosato in achieving this mighty goal, to which he has dedicated his entire life.

More details from the Asahi Shimbun here

2 thoughts on “Kisenosato Recommended For Promotion To Yokozuna

  1. Amazing. I kind of saw it coming though. The Japanese are really, really desperate, aren’t they? Oh well…let’s see what Kisenosato does in the upcoming March basho. Being Yokozuna means more pressure and he’s got to be able to handle it. I really wish him well and perhaps he will raise his level of competition.

  2. I am not sure I would call it desperation, the flip side to Andy’s analysis is that the current class of Ozeki and Yokozuna are all facing health problems. By some magic Kisenosato seems to be incredibly durable. With this really nice crop of up-and-coming rikishi, it may be a bit of an “insurance policy” in case greats like Harumafuji or Kakuryu are too banged up to survive much longer. There would be Kisenosato to serve the role of Yokozuna no matter what, because they can count on him to show up.

    This kind of dogged dedication to your station in life is highly prized in Japanese culture, and I can see why they would consider Yokozuna Kisenosato an insurance policy against future changes in the Ozeki and Yokozuna ranks. It’s for this same reason I would guess we see at least one of Takayasu / Mitakeumi / Shodai at or near Ozeki rank by this time next year. They need new mainstays.

    We really don’t know too much about the medical condition of the two kyujo Yokozuna, but the initial reports on Harumfuji described what could be a career ending injury, as it is difficult to heal a knee that has suffered that kind of damage. Doubly so when your job involves Tokyo-rodeo of 300+ pound sumotori.

    It’s pretty clear the NSK and YDC have wanted to promote Kisenosato for a while now, and they just needed a fig leaf to give them credibility. So now that is done, one has to wonder what the YDC is going to do with its time.


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.