🌐 Location: Shirakawa, Fukushima
Today’s newsreel is going to be short, as little material floated my way from that location.
First, for those who worry when they hear the name “Fukushima”, let me assure you that Shirakawa is not really anywhere near the unfortunate nuclear disaster area. You can verify on the Japan Radiation Map. The latest reading from Shirakawa is 115nSv/h.
The star of the day – appearing for the first time in his home prefecture as a sekitori – was Wakatakakage. As such, he was trying to give a good show during morning practice, but when he was about to do some butsukari with yusho winner Mitakeumi, the oyakata around the dohyo stopped him. “What’s that on your forehead? Having issues adjusting to the Jungyo?” (It’s his first).
As it turns out, a big fat cold sore found the worst timing to make an appearance on the young wrestler’s forehead. He was told to take it easy and rest a bit.
But he did participate in the torikumi and enthusiastically answered fan requests for photos and autographs.
There have been reports that Kisenosato was also absent from keiko this day – he was definitely not in the torikumi, and visitors reported not seeing him anywhere, though he was not officially reported as absent.
Absent stars did not disrupt the usual energetic flow of keiko:
This is moshi-ai. Or rather, the part of it where somebody just won and every wrestler tries to be picked as the next opponent. You snooze – you lose.
After practice was done, Takayasu and Onosho found a spot suitable for more practice in a publc park:
— えみぬあ (@eminyaaaaa) August 10, 2018
— okbizm (@okabeizm1) August 10, 2018
See, doing sumo is very simple. Find a clear spot of hardened earth, mark a circle and two lines with a stick, and off you go. Of course, no tawara tricks are available.
In addition to Wakatakakage and Terunohana (Terutsuyoshi’s tsukebito), who also happens to be from Fukushima, there was a third Fukushima man who caught some limelight:
Introducing the backup performer of the yumi-tori. This is Hokutoo, 25 years old, from Hakkaku beya. And he is no less than 196cm tall, which could make for a very impressive performance. That’s taller than Ikioi, believe it or not.
Being a local boy, he got to do the duty today rather than Kasugaryu.
This probably means that, alas, the chances of us ever seeing Satonofuji holding a bow again are getting extremely slim. I have a feeling that Harumafuji’s retirement ceremony may well be his last performance, and may be the reason he has not retired as yet.
At the end of the day, Hakuho re-joined the Jungyo, just in time to catch the bus as everybody was leaving for the next destination. Apparently, he will need neither arthroscopy nor surgery.
Signing off this short report, here is your Enho. With the Yokozuna back, Enho will stay with us for the rest of the Jungyo. Yay!