Natsu 2018 Jungyo Newsreel – Days 6 and 7

Today I’m wrapping two Jungyo days into one post, because frankly, materials about the visit to Yuzawa were scarce. Both events took place in Niigata prefecture, so they fit together anyway.


  • Turns out Gagamaru and Takekaze have joined the Jungyo at Niigata
  • The full bout between Yutakayama and Endo turned up. See below.

🌐 Location: Yuzawa-machi, Uonuma-gun, Niigata

In a small, sleepy ski resort, Churanoumi, who is soon to lose his sekitori status, is nevertheless diligently working out. The surprising aspect of this is the guy he is using for weight lifting:

We have seen several sekitori lifting their tsukebito or their trainer. Or in the case of the Taka twins, their brother. But in this case, Churanoumi is lifting a man who outranks him a whole division. Yes, that’s Ishiura on his back.

And we have good news – a second Yokozuna mounts the dohyo for practice. This involves giving Yutakayama, the local boy, some TLC, Yokozuna-style:

Hakuho was practicing with a rubber band. And the Yokozuna can’t finish this rubber band practice without targeting his tsukebito’s sensitive parts:

He does it every single time. This time he was even a little merciful, letting it loosen a bit before letting go. I suspect his partner had a stiff insert inside his mawashi in anticipation of this. Here is Enho (who, you may recall, is also one of the Yokozuna’s tsukebito, so he has to do this thing from time to time) in the training camp before the Nagoya basho. His face tells of anticipated pain.

Enho knows what’s coming. And that towel won’t help a bit.

🌐 Location: Niigata city, Niigata prefecture

Now, this was a whole different thing as far as coverage is concerned. As I said, Yutakayama hails from this city, and he was the star of the day:

The second lady there wants Yutakayama to become Yokozuna. Well, time will tell. In the meantime, Kakuryu again gave him a butsukari session:

A slightly longer video of this is here:

Yutakayama at least fared better than Daiamami did two Jungyos ago – he finished up on his own two feet. You can also see that as usual, Kakuryu does away with much of the Alpha Male bravado part of the butsukari. The usual way to complete a butsukari session is with the receiver knocking on the giver’s chest, who in turn rolls him one last time in the dirt. Kakuryu here is all like – “OK, we’re done. I get it, I got a knock on my chest. But really, do you like rolling in the dirt? Just go…”

That bout between Yutakayama and Endo of which you saw a glimpse in the video, in fact included a wardrobe malfunction. Konosuke did not let it go this time, and had a mawashi-matta:


Endo seems to have lost both front and back there. And something about this amuses him very much. Maybe the prolonged hug with Yutakayama:


That’s not an expression you’re likely to see on anybody’s face during honbasho – even in the middle of a wardrobe malfunction.

And here is the full bout:

Anyway, Yutakayama may have been the main course in this meal, but there were many other activities going on around the venue. For example, Kotoeko joined a calisthenics class:

The sekitori were doing moshi-ai. Here we have Endo and Myogiryu:


And Shohozan vs. Okinoumi:


Tochiozan was trying to hide from the Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal:


You see, knowing where your towel is is very important!

Tamawashi shook off his murderous ways and instead taught Kyokushuho a resistance training drill:

You wrap the rubber band around your arms like so…
And then pull those arms together.

As the sekitori were getting ready for the dohyo-iri… OK, we interrupt our programming for the following message. This is Yago:


Kintamayama claims that only 3 out of 10 fans would recognize this man. I’m here to rectify this. I have a soft spot for Yago, as my very first post on Tachiai was about Yago. He was amateur Yokozuna, got a Makushita tsuke-dashi position, and struggled a bit to find his place in Juryo at first. He is now one of the mainstays with a good chance of making it to Makuuchi soon. Yago is his real name – his stablemaster said he will not give him a shikona until he matures from a “yago” (different spelling, a dragonfly nymph) to a full-fledged dragonfly. Dragonflies, by the way, are symbolic in sumo – they can only fly forward, so they are a symbol for forward-moving, no-retreat attitude.

Oh, and Osunaarashi in his day nicknamed Yago “Ago”. Which is Japanese for “chin” or “jaw”. Yago is very highly recognizable by his substantial jawline. No, he is not a pretty boy like Enho or Tobizaru, but he is a friendly guy with great potential.

So now I hope you all know who Yago is and how to recognize him, and we shall now proceed with the our planned programming.

Speaking of Enho and Tobizaru, Enho was pulling the oldest prank in the book on Tobuzaru today:

This involve mixing a good amount of the dohyo salt in the ladle of chikara-mizu before handing it over to the awaiting wrestler. The yobidashi usually sees what’s happening but keeps his mouth shut. This is not something you ever do in honbasho, but there is not a single jungyo where this is not done – several times, if possible.

I won’t be surprised if revenge awaits Enho in tomorrow’s event. As Enho always fights first in the Juryo bouts, he will be receiving the water from the wrestler that follows him… which is very likely to be the same Tobizaru.

Goofing around in the Jungyo is not reserved just to Juryo. Take a look at Onosho in the Makuuchi dohyo-iri, as Mitakeumi ascends the dohyo:

So here is the musubi-no-ichiban. And finally, it seems that Kakuryu is able to produce some forward motion:

This is it for today. But I can’t finish without the obligatory Enho photo!


Ah yes, Shohozan is in it, too. 😀

And there is even a “the making of” version of this picture:


17 thoughts on “Natsu 2018 Jungyo Newsreel – Days 6 and 7

  1. Wonderful article Herouth san, yet again. Especially the Yago 矢後,!! The photo terrific! And yes he’s in my Top5 faves – another Hokkaido boy! May not be a pretty boy in the Japanese & wider world sense, but like Hokutofuji, his friendliness, politeness, and charm, u can see through his eyes, and his gentle nature with a dash of humour just beneath the surface, it’s there for all to see, making him, in my eyes, a very kawaii 可愛い young man slowly and confidently making his own way up the banzuke 🙂

  2. I love this stuff. Another great job, Herouth!

    Today’s update for Ikioi fans: Ikioi’s fiancee, golfer Mamiko Higa, struggled with her approach shots in Day 3 of the Women’s British Open. She still managed to post a one under par round, leaving her tied for fourth, but only three shots behind leader Pornanong Phatlum. If she can clean up those approach shots on Day 4, then she clearly has the game to contend for this championship. Miss Phatlum, now in her ninth year on the LPGA tour, has never yet managed to close the deal for an LPGA tournament victory, much less a major like the British Open.

    The NBC announcers shared the rumor that Ikioi may be heading for Royal Lytham for Day 4; the announcers definitely are hoping to see the 6’4″, 375 pound sumo giant trailing the 5’3″ Miss Higa. They noted that Ikioi and Higa’s October 11 wedding date also is the birthday for both of them.

      • Royal Lytham golf course in Blackpool, England. Just a rumor, but the TV announcers were having fun with it. Can you imagine seeing Ikioi caddying for Miss Higa?

        • The idea of Ikioi hanging around a golf course in a yukata, towing a caddy (he can’t actually drive a golf cart, though), while humming his steam iron commercial, is very amusing. The likelihood of this happening, though, is zero. See the hoops Hakuho had to go through to get a permission to visit his freaking father’s funeral. He had to get permission not just from the NSK but also from the sponsors.

          I wonder, though, if Ikioi has ever been outside of Japan at all in his life.

          • Ikioi’s future bride, Mamiko Higa, finished Day 4 of the Women’s British Open exactly where she began it — in a tie for fourth place (tied with world #1 Ariya Jutanugarn). The course had dried out and she, and most of the rest of the field, seemed to have trouble adjusting to the faster conditions, finishing +1 for the day, -9 for the tournament. She’ll be bringing home a check for US$145,000 for her very solid efforts.

            To no one’s surprise, there was no Ikioi sighting at Royal Lytham.

            P.S. England’s own Georgia Hall made her fellow Britishers very happy by taking the victory.

          • I can’t help but wonder what Mongolian cusses Hakuho was dropping towards the NSK et al…behind their backs, of course…

            • Apparently, Mongolian is not very strong on the cussing side. Their original ones involve things like used tea leaves and dead horses. The young generation tends to rely on Russian for good cussing. 😁

  3. Enho knows how to look pretty. Always get your picture taken next to the ugly guy.

    And on the subject of “towels” Ichinojo (sadly absent) reminds me of the Sperm Whale who turns into a bowl of flowers at a crucial moment.

    • Time to re-read THHGTTG… The nuclear missiles sent by the thousands-of-years-old automatic defense system of Magrathea were changed into a Sperm Whale and a bowl of petunias, both ending their lives shortly afterwards as they crashed on the planet’s surface and why do I remember any of this stuff anyway? 😳

      • Probably because you are “having tremendous difficulty” with your lifestyle.

        In the upcoming Japanese adaptation Takayasu will play Marvin the paranoid android and Akiseyama is tipped for the role of Vogon commander.

      • because you’re mad like the rest of us! do they hand around the sun glasses that darken when they sense danger approaching so you can’t see danger approaching….?? mmm….


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