Danpatsu-shiki Galore

The past few days have seen quite a few prominant Danpatsu-shiki, with Kitazakura, Chiyotaikai, and Asashoryu all getting snipped since the 1st of the month.

Kitazakura had about 230 take the scissors to his fading mage, with Kitanoumi oyakata making the final cut.  Kitzakura, kind soul that he is, was in good enough spirits to make a joke about his thining hair, saying “my hair was already pretty thin, but my head feels a little lighter.”  Kitazakura spent 12 basho in Makuuchi, and 48 in Juryo picking up 1 yusho there.  He is widely know for his ample and dramatic salt throwing and his saintly personality.

Next on the chopping block was Chiyotaikai.  The former ozeki has his mage snipped by 358 people with the wolf Kokonoe performing the final snip.  The artist formerly known as Chiyotaikai (now Sanoyama)’s mother was also in attendance, and expressed her disappointment at being unable to step foot on the dohyo.  Taikai holds the record for most tournaments at Ozeki with 65 (but also hold the dubious honor of having the most amount of kadoban basho, 14 I believe.)  Over his career he had 3 yusho, and only dropped to the rank of sekiwake the basho of his retirement.  Taikai was known for his ferocious tsuppari, which, at his peak, could beat most every rikishi.

Lastly former Yokozuna Asashoryu had his topknot cut at the Kokugikan on the 3rd of October.  The Khan did his final dohyo-iri in his standard unryu style, with Harumafuji serving as tachi-mochi (sword bearer) and Asasekiryu serving as tsuyu-harai (dew-sweeper).  About 380 people took turns snipping at Asa’s mage before Takasago-oyakata made the final cut.  The former yokozuna kissed the dohyo and said “I have put my life into this dohyo.  The dohyo was an inseparable part of my life and so important. I feel so much appreciation.”  Asashoryu was sumo’s 68th Yokozuna.  He accumulated 25 emperor’s cups (the 3rd most ever) in only 55 basho in the Makuuchi division.  He also remains the only rikishi to have gona zen-yusho winning all 6 tournamnets in a calendar year.  Asashoryu was known for his dramatic and firey style, diversity with kimarite, and brute strength in the ring.

Thank you for the sumo gentlemen, enjoy your retirement.

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