NHK World Harumafuji Update


During the day Friday, US Time, NHK World has been leading their broadcast (video at the link) with an update on the investigation into Harumafuji’s assault of Takanoiwa. Leading the report is news that Harumafuji told police investigators that he did attack Takanoiwa, but only used his hands, rather than a beer bottle as earlier reports stated.

This comes on the back of reports this morning Japan time that the health report filed by Takanoiwa and his Oyakata, former Yokozuna Takanohana, may have included descriptions of injuries sustained well before his hospitalization. This includes the skull fracture and the cerebral-spinal fluid reported in Takanoiwa’s ears. From Tachiai’s own lead Japanese press-hawk, Herouth;



As well as this translation:


If true, this departs greatly from the events that were reported when the story broke earlier this week, and greatly change the context of the scandal.  Tachiai will continue to track this story as the investigation continues.

9 thoughts on “NHK World Harumafuji Update

  1. Thanks for the credit.

    To me it’s a relief to know that the man is not more brutal than Asashoryu. But an assault is still an assault. I want to forgive him and say it’s all the fault of Alchohol. But… the gentleman Yokozuna should have realized he did wrong under the influence and should have come clean, rather than trust to the hush system to allow him to continue as Yokozuna.

    There is still no way I see him not going intai. But now Takanohana and Takanoiwa are also in trouble, and the Yokozuna may just get off with just resignation rather than time served.

    • Takanohana will need to be answering questions about that timeline and whether he made the appropriate notifications to the Kyokai in a timely manner.

  2. I don’t even know what is going on here any more.

    Regardless, the Demon Alcohol is not an excuse for violence. If one is known to be a violent drunk, one should not drink.

    • That’s fine in general, but in reality how is a person like him going to avoid drinking situations that are basically mandated due to the prevailing culture and job? He’s going to lose face by staying home in his hotel room while all his peers party it up. He could sit there at the table drinking soda all night long, but as anyone who’d has to play DD for their friends knows, it gets really tedious being the only sober one in the room.

      I also wonder if he’s on any other medications for his chronic injuries, because you can get some really scary reactions to alcohol with prescription drugs.

      He looks like an ass regardless, and I don’t know enough about public contrition and rehabilitation in Japan to say whether his career is toast or not.

      • Nevertheless, people do play DD all the time, because they are responsible, which Harumafuji usually was. Also, I can’t drink alcohol due to a blood pressure medication I take. Now, regardless of the fact that personally I don’t really like either the taste or the effect of alcohol, so this is not much of a punishment to me, I’m sure many other people who use that medication (and if he is on one of those you mentioned, he should know it) have to refrain from drinking alcohol. And the way they do it is explain it to their peers and bosses.

        So the man just needs to break those sake kegs, he doesn’t need to actually sample them. And he could go just to the party and refrain from going to the after-party. Or he can busy himself with the karaoke instead of chugging. That’s part of the responsibility of being a Yokozuna.

        • I’ll support your Yokozuna run once women finally revolt and form their own pro sumo league. We’ve got more than enough hinkaku to go around. :)

          Previous Yokozuna were big boozers and horndogs, but they kept it on the down low and everyone looked the other way. Same as Hollywood, it won’t improve until people feel safe enough to speak out against the status quo.

  3. From Kintamayama via the sumo forum: “The Kyokai’s crisis committee has launched its own investigation into this matter. The hospital where Takanoiwa was hospitalized was surprised to hear the seriousness of the understanding of their certificate. Additionally, the Kyokai is saying that the “2 weeks to heal” thing should be applied from October 26th till November 9th, so, for all intents and purposes, Takanoiwa should not have had any problems entering Kyushu. “We feel that there is no problem with Takanoiwa’s condition at the present.. The hospital has no idea why anyone thought this was serious..”said a committee member. A CT scan was done and a fracture line was found, but the hospital says it could have been there before and was not necessarily new and said they pointed it out on the certificate just to be on the safe side. As for the cerebrospinal fluid, the hospital says it could come from an outer ear inflammation but they have no way of being certain that it wasn’t caused by the blow so they wrote it as well. So in fact, there is no real proof that cerebrospinal fluid leaked at all from the blow.”

  4. It is tiresome hearing a story with so many changes and contradictory information. Call me when we have the full story figured out.


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