Nagoya Nears
Eric Blair
As Nagoya nears, EB gets a head start on the pack by focussing on points of interest, past and present surrounding sumo's hottest basho

Rikishi of Old
Joe Kuroda
The 42nd yokozuna Kagamisato falls under the JK microscope

Heya Peek
Barbara Ann Klein
Kokonoe-beya and the Chiyo Boys

SFM Interview
Mark Buckton
SFM's Ed-in-Chief interviews Estonian up and comer Baruto

Sumo 101
Barbara Ann Klein
SFM's Editor looks at all the twists and turns involved in the tsunauchi-shiki and adds a photo bonanza to boot

Photo Bonanza
See the Natsu
Basho and Kokonoe-beya photo bonanzas

Natsu Basho Summary
Lon Howard
Lon gives us his Natsu Basho summary, along with the henka sightings results

Lower Division Rikishi
Mikko Mattila
Mikko Mattila lets you know what is going on down below the curtain

Nagoya Ones to Watch
Mark Buckton
MB's mixed bag of things to look out for in Nagoya

Kimarite Focus
Mikko Mattila
Our man Mikko takes us on a tour of several defensive oriented kimarite

Amateur Angles
Howard Gilbert
The first of our regular column pieces on the amateur sumo scene from a man who knows more than most

Sumo Game
Bruce Rae
For a look at his very own: PTYW (Pick The Yusho Winners)

Sumo in Print
Barbara Ann Klein
SFM's Editor reviews the newly published biography of Akebono, Gaijin Yokozuna – but sees it as more than just a biography

Kokugi Connections
Todd Lambert
Check out Todd's bimonthly focus on 3 of the WWW's best sumo sites around

Fan Debate
Facilitator – Lon Howard
Sumo author Mina Hall and long long time fan Jim Bitgood discuss how to make sumo more entertaining – if such a concept is even necessary

SFM Cartoons
Benny Loh & Stephen Thompson
Sit back and enjoy the offerings of sumo's premier artists

Let’s Hear From You
What was it that
made you a sumo fan? James Vath in rural Japan lets us in on his gateway to the sport

Readers’ Letters
See what our readers had to say since we last went out

Sumo Quiz
The Quizmaster
Answer the Qs and win yourself next basho’s banzuke.

Amateur Angles

by Howard Gilbert
though, of course, the most able athletes are approached by sumo scouts or directly by oyakata and many of the boys and young men may aspire to a career in ozumo. But that is only part of the story of amateur sumo, even in Japan. For every amateur sumo athlete who goes into ozumo there are many, many more who do not, instead just enjoying the competition and test of physical and mental endurance that sumo provides. Furthermore, the sport is divided into weight divisions and includes women’s divisions (called Shinsumo) as well. So, ultimately, there are many athletes who participate in amateur sumo who will never be able to enter ozumo because they don’t have the physical presence or, in the case of women, simply are not permitted by the Japan Sumo Association.

In Japan, amateur sumo exists in three broad categories. The first, children’s sumo, is the lifeblood of the sport in that country, both amateur and professional. It is at this stage that children are exposed to sumo and become acquainted with the rules, etiquette and techniques through clubs in the community or at those primary

Welcome to Amateur Angles, the new column that looks at the amateur sumo scene worldwide. In each edition we’ll explore some facet of the sport of amateur sumo to give a much broader view of what perhaps is only sketchily known by many of you out there. So, join me and my contacts around the globe as we show another side to the sport we all love.
This column looks to build upon the previous forays into exploring the world of amateur sumo that Sumo Fan Magazine has so far undertaken. In Issue 3 we had a report on the 2005 World Sumo Championships from Mark Buckton, a photo bonanza of that tournament by John Gunning, Barbara Klein’s Sumo 101 on amateur sumo and an interview with Katrina Watts. In Issue 6 this was followed up by an interview with Stephen Gadd of the European Sumo Union, information from the International Sumo Federation, and news of the establishment of Sumo Ireland.

The recent successes of Kotooshu and Baruto in makuuchi make apparent the potential of the worldwide presence of amateur sumo as a breeding ground for future ozumo talent. It is not only the
foreign rikishi who have come from amateur sumo, however. Scanning the banzuke reveals former college stars such as Kotomitsuki and Miyabiyama, able journeymen in Takamisakari and Tokitenku (a Mongolian who went through the Japanese college ranks) and the emerging talents of Shimoda and Sawai. Some of our favourites of yesteryear, such as Musoyama, Mainoumi and Wajima, were also notable amateur sumo athletes in college before attaining huge success in ozumo.

However, amateur sumo is far more than just a training ground for tomorrow’s ozumo stars. It is a network of tournaments and organisations that facilitate and administer the existence of sumo as a competitive fighting sport for all. There is no automatic link to the professional world,
L10 Web Stats Reporter 3.15 LevelTen Hit Counter - Free PHP Web Analytics Script
LevelTen dallas web development firm - website design, flash, graphics & marketing