Natsu 2018 Jungyo Newsreel – Day 4

🌐 Location: Komatsu, Ishikawa


Today the Jungyo found itself in the Komatsu Dome, a semi-outdoors stadium, rather different than the usual local gymnasiums where the Jungyo takes place. It has a retractable roof and a bare-bones design, and is used to host baseball, soccer, and other turf-based sports. Well, tatty artificial turf, but still.

And there is no air-conditioning there. At all.

And it was 32ºC (~90ºF) today.

Did I mention it was hot?

There were electric fans and “tsurara” – blocks of ice, of which the rikishi made as much use as they could. For example, Kyokushuho thought this would be an ideal place for his rubber-band training:

Komatsu Hot

Takekaze, on the other hand, used the ice to cool off his aching elbow:


You can imagine that doing fansa under such conditions is not easy. But Kakuryu was very dutiful:

Where is Shinzan (the scary-looking bespectacled tsukebito) when we need him?

Despite the heat, some rikishi made good use of the facilities for some track-and-field:

Participants, from the left: Terutsuyoshi, Nishikigi, Shodai, officiated by Shohozan. And… Shodai could have won this, if he only had a… better… start…

The NSK’s PR department made an appearance in today’s event, for the first time bringing the NSK’s mascot, Hiyonoyama, to the Jungyo. They were there to promote ticket sales for the Aki basho, which start in a few days. They picked a nice way to do it – videos of “guess the rikishi”, followed by “come and support us in the basho, ticket sales start on August 4th”. I’m including a few of those here, you can see them all in the NSK’s twitter account if you want:

This mystery rikishi was captured in his undies. Doesn’t seem to bother him much, though.

And this one was actually captured coming out of the bath! And got photobombed, too.

“Make sure you come!” cries the intruder.

Apart from this, business was as usual. Onosho did some suri-ashi on the artificial turf:


Goeido lended his chest to Tobizaru. The Ozeki seems to enjoy this immensely.


Yutakayama and Asanoyama engaged in an energetic moshi-ai bout. A moshi-ai is a series of bouts, in which the winner decides who his next rival will be. This always involves several anxious rikishi hovering around and begging to be selected as soon as the current bout is over:


The king of the moshi-ai in this Jungyo seems to be none other than Aoiyama:

Aoiyama vs. Asanoyama

He has been doing serial moshi-ai (which means he was winning) for four days in a row now. Today it was just four, but on day 1 he had 5 bouts, on day 2 11, and on day 3 9 straight moshi-ai bouts. He is taping padding to his injured heels, and gambarizing in general, and it seems to be working.

Komatsu is in Ishikawa, and there are two and a half sekitori Ishikawa boasts as its own. These are Endo, Kagayaki, and Enho:

Enho in a Taiho yukata, Endo in a Takanohana Yukata, and Kagayaki going for monochrome sakura.

169cm Enho right next to 193cm Kagayaki. It’s the story of his life, really:

Enho and Kagayaki, or rather Nakamura-kun and Tatsu-kun, in their middle school days.

Endo is, of course, the undeniable superstar of the three. He was everywhere. He gave butsukari:

The victim is Daishoryu (I think he is his tsukebito)

He also received some butsukari:

The chest is offered by Yutakayama

The okonomi acts of the day also involved the local boys. In addition to the usual Shokkiri (this time by the Kasugano pair, they seem to be alternating), Endo was used to demonstrate how an oicho-mage is tied:


The other okonomi allowed Enho, who is not a sekitori, to also partake of the limelight. How? Well, put Hakuho on stage for a rope-tying demonstration:

Enho on the right, pulling with every ounce of his (considerable) strength

The three local boys were also in the news! So here are three torikumi packed into one news report:

Whoa, that’s some nice tsuri-yori from Enho there. Churanoumi gets a reminder why he is going back to Makushita while Enho back to Juryo.

That’s it for today. If I get my hands on the Musubi or any other bout I’ll add it here. Here is your daily Enho (as if you didn’t have enough…):

The kid is actually wearing an Kokonoe shirt… Oops…

PS – Since I found this on the net after the post was already published, but couldn’t just let it slip away: Here is the full opening drum roll:

9 thoughts on “Natsu 2018 Jungyo Newsreel – Day 4

  1. One thing I don’t understand. Do the Japanese have some kind of dreadful phobia concerning air conditioning? I assume Japanese summers are like summers throughout the world—-hot and muggy. And I find it odd that these indoor facilities are utilizing ”electric fans and blocks of ice” to keep cool. Say what? This is one of the most modern nations in the world, for goodness sake. I’m a huge fan of the all-girl Japanese pop idol group, AKB48. Absolutely love ’em. And after a summer concern in one of these big indoor stadia, the girls look like they’ve just run a marathon through an Arizona desert. What am I missing here?

    • Europe doesn’t seem to have much A/C, either. As for Japan, it doesn’t seem like forced air and central a/c & hvac have been incorporated into many office or apartment buildings. It would take massive retrofitting. They seem to have room a/c, almost exclusively. Instead of those square things in windows, it’s a longer Kawasaki thing cut into the wall, controlled w/ a remote.

    • I suppose a full answer to this would necessitate a long dissertation, but one of the many correct factors that go into the lack and/or inadequacy of AC in many Japanese venues is the Japanese notion of “gaman.” There is a perception that there is some heroic beauty in withstanding uncomfortable situations, enduring in spite of things like hot/cold weather or awkward sitting postures. When I lived in Japan as a child, and went to a normal public school, it was ingrained in us to rigidly sit on our knees rather than crossing our legs and sitting on our butts. Getting comfortable was a sign of moral weakness. There certainly wasn’t air conditioning or heaters in school. Being comfortable with being uncomfortable is believed to build character.

      This notion that Japanese people should be able to practice “gaman” is one of, but certainly not the only, reasons why there isn’t a huge emphasis on comfort in Japanese life. The fact that Japan somehow became the mecca for uber comfortable toilets (even though traditional toilets are squat types) makes for a strange dichotomy. In general, though, Japanese people view themselves as being able to endure difficult conditions, long hours, uncomfortable situations and an elevated amount of physical exertion. Gaman is one of the foundational ideals of Japaneseness.

      • Bakanofuji, thanks so much for enlightening me on the subject. That was, indeed, a wonderful explanation. I obviously know very little about what’s involved and what it means to be Japanese. It’s still amazing to me that the whole concept of ”gaman” can be so ingrained in those people as to exist so strenuously and so profusely well into the 21st century. To the average American such as myself, I find it almost endearing. Thanks again.

  2. would be interested to read some replies on ice-v-aircon to Rich’s above comment, but for me the stand outs were those fun ‘who am i?’ clips! Yago (my other Hokkaido rikishi) i’d know anywhere… the other clips are cute – with the stand out for me being Tsurugisho (the ‘intruder’) – he’s a natural! hehehehe….

  3. The thing to remember about the old Enho/ Kagayaki pic is that the age difference is only 4 months. Kagayaki was 183 cm and 108 kg at 13, which I think is bigger than Enho is now. He must have been a terrifying prospect in junior competition.

    • Hehe. I should have looked at their birth dates. Really amazing. Yes, indeed that’s more than Enho is right now. I don’t think he is over the 100kg line yet. Thank you!


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