Winter Jungyo began on December 1. As is usual, the winter Jungyo will travel around Kyushu, ending in Okinawa. This Jungyo is not as much of a long, winding tour as has been the case in past. With 11 dates in 10 locations, it is much shorter than the Spring and Summer trips which often span a whole month, hitting around twenty-five tour sites.
The tour kicked off in Nogata with both Yokozuna, as Kakuryu’s back was feeling better. I have had back spasms before to where I can’t move for a couple of days…the cause, in both cases, was picking up my son. The funny thing is, he’s 10 now and weighs virtually nothing. Back then he was a tiny baby, always below the 5th percentile. Moral of the story is, take care of your back. I hope the Yokozuna and Ichinojo are able to recuperate. Sadly, we have a dwindling contingent of banged up (former) Ozeki. The only one to show up for Jungyo has been Takakeisho, and that comes with an asterisk, as Herouth reported. Herouth’s kyujo list grew a few days later with the addition of Kotoshogiku…but Takayasu was back to practicing as his arm is totally fine.
Nogata lies on the outskirts of Kita-Kyushu, the city at the northern tip of Kyushu. Herouth found this amazing video of practice bout between Enho and Shohozan. These two are a very entertaining pair so I hope this rivalry will last several years, though Shohozan has already been in Makuuchi for the better part of the last eight years.
For the next stop, Jungyo crossed the Kanmon Strait back to the main island of Honshu for an event in Shimonoseki, two days later. Perhaps the wrestlers needed an extra day to tour the Higashida Museum Park in Kita-Kyushu? Surely no more sightseeing time as the troupe hopped back down to the southern side of Kumamoto on the 4th and back up to Fukuoka prefecture on the 5th.