71st Yokozuna Kakuryu Retires, Announces Elder Name

After 5 consecutive tournaments absent due to various injuries, Yokozuna Kakuryu has decided to retire from competition. The 6 time Emperor’s Cup champion had sought a 7th before pulling out of the current Spring basho. He will remain in the sumo association, addressed as Kakuryu-oyakata. Kakuryu, born Anand Mangaljalav in his native Mongolia, was takenContinue reading “71st Yokozuna Kakuryu Retires, Announces Elder Name”

Hakuho and Kotoshoho Join Kakuryu on Sidelines

Undefeated so far at the Spring Grand Sumo Tournament, Yokozuna Hakuho’s day 2 win against M1 Takarafuji came at a price. Takarafuji went chest to chest with the Yokozuna, securing a dominant right inside belt grip after the initial scuffle. Unable to reciprocate on his outmatched opponent’s belt, Hakuho took a brief pause at centerContinue reading “Hakuho and Kotoshoho Join Kakuryu on Sidelines”

Can Kakuryu Catch a Break?

Last Wednesday, Kakuryu confirmed his intention to return to the ring after four consecutive tournaments absent. Ranked at West Yokozuna alongside fellow Mongolian Hakuho in the East slot, Kakuryu shared his feelings on the upcoming Haru Basho, now only one week away. “I’m finally competing. Finally,” he said between sniffles and coughs while talking toContinue reading “Can Kakuryu Catch a Break?”

Kakuryu is Japanese! | Hakuho Challenges Takakeisho

Mongolian-born Yokozuna Kakuryu has attained Japanese citizenship, a prerequisite for holding elder stock in the Japan Sumo Association. He of course has the option to continue competing, but with 15 years worth of professional level wear-and-tear, and pressure from the Yokozuna Deliberation Council to produce results or quit, it seems the main thing holding himContinue reading “Kakuryu is Japanese! | Hakuho Challenges Takakeisho”

November Banzuke

We are less than two weeks away from the last honbasho of 2020! Taking place in Tokyo instead of the usual Fukuoka Kokusai Center, spectator capacity in the Ryogoku Kokugikan will be increased to around 5000 seats, double the previous tournament. Aside from bold moves by the sumo association, the newly released rankings chart promisesContinue reading “November Banzuke”

Both Yokozuna to Take September Off

Two days before the beginning of Aki Basho, both current Yokozuna submitted doctor’s notes to the sumo association, withdrawing from the tournament. This will be the first time in 37 years that two or more active Yokozuna will not compete from day one. The last time this happened was at Natsu Basho 1983, when bothContinue reading “Both Yokozuna to Take September Off”

Kakuryu Proud Father of Three

Taking part in NHK’s “Special Basho” broadcast from a remote location, Yokozuna Kakuryu announced his second daughter (third child) was born this past April. The proud father fielded questions from NHK announcer Ota Masahide during the end of the program. “Last month, in the midst of these difficult times, my third child was born. I’veContinue reading “Kakuryu Proud Father of Three”

COVID Cases in Sumo Not the Reason for Cancellation says Shibatayama

April 4th was a big day in sumo news media, with 18 articles in the Grand Sumo section of Nikkan Sports alone. Public relations director Shibatayama offered a bit of insight into the Japan Sumo Association’s decisions to cancel Natsu Basho and to move the July tournament from Nagoya to Tokyo, and popular rikishi gaveContinue reading “COVID Cases in Sumo Not the Reason for Cancellation says Shibatayama”

Kakuryu Aiming for 7th Title at Natsu

Natsu Basho will be the fifth tournament since Kakuryu’s last Emperor’s Cup. The West Yokozuna spent most of the time since then absent due to injury. But just last month, in a solid comeback, he ended the meet as runner up with 12 wins after being backed out by Hakuho in a final day tie-breaker.Continue reading “Kakuryu Aiming for 7th Title at Natsu”

Takayasu Severely Injured on Day 4

West Yokozuna Kakuryu faced West Maegashira 1 Takayasu in the final bout of day 4 of the Spring tournament. During the match, Kakuryu was not able to attack with his desired inside belt grip, but after a patient grip fight the Yokozuna gave up the belt and deflected Takayasu to the side for a tsukiotoshiContinue reading “Takayasu Severely Injured on Day 4”