We have shown you how they prepare for battle. Now it is time to share some photos of the Sumo competition itself. Last November, the world’s top Sumo wrestlers gathered in Fukuoka City for the Kyushu Bashoo. Fukuoka is one of only four cities where Sumo competitions are held in Japan. It was the first time for both Asawa and I to see a Sumo competition so we were naturally excited. The wrestlers did not disappoint as they put on an amazing show for us. As I said in the prior post, I have a whole new respect for sumo wrestlers and their sport. It takes a lifetime of commitment, passion and humility to excel in it.
For the uninitiated, here are some clips about Sumo from Wikipedia:
There are six divisions in sumo: makuuchi, jūryō, makushita, sandanme, jonidan, and jonokuchi . Wrestlers enter sumo in the lowest jonokuchi division and, ability permitting, work their way up to the top division. Wrestlers in the top two divisions are known as sekitori, while lower division wrestlers are generally referred to by the generic term for wrestlers, rikishi.
The topmost makuuchi division receives the most attention from fans and has the most complex hierarchy. The majority of wrestlers are maegashira and are numbered from one (at the top) down to about sixteen or seventeen. Above the maegashira are the three champion or titleholder ranks, called the sanyaku. These are, in ascending order, komusubi, sekiwake, and ōzeki. At the pinnacle of the ranking system is the rank of yokozuna.
Yokozuna, or grand champions, are generally expected to compete for and to win the top division tournament title on a regular basis. Hence the promotion criteria for yokozuna are very strict. In general, an ōzeki must win the championship for two consecutive tournaments or an “equivalent performance” to be considered for promotion to yokozuna. More than one wrestler can hold the rank of yokozuna at the same time.
Now that we got that out of the way on to the photos.
Sumos enter the ring for their Introduction
Speaking of ads, I need to insert some of my own!
Ok back to the match!