Evidence of Bout-Fixing in Sumo Leads to Investigation

   Nine rikishi and one elder were summoned to the Kokugikan for a meeting with the JSA board of directors on Wednesday afternoon regarding cell phone text messages seeming to indicate match-fixing.


Among those summoned were:

Elder: Takenawa (former Kasuganishiki)

Makuuchi: Shotenro, Koryu, and Toyozakura

Juryo: Kyokunankai, Wakatenro, and Kiyoseumi

Makushita: Yamamotoyama, Shirononami, and Enatsukasa

   The names of 11 rikishi (four makuuchi, four juryo, three makushita) and two elders were mentioned in the text messages.  Tokyo police seized two cell phones as part of last year’s investigation on the baseball gambling scandal.  Below is a sample of the messages released to the public.

22 March (2010) Rikishi A to Rikishi B: “I’m going to attack today at full strength.”

7 May Rikishi A to Rikishi C: “If ____ faces someone from Juryo joi, ____ has to take him down.”

10 May Rikishi D to Rikishi C: “Please attack hard at the tachiai, then go with the flow.”

12 May Rikishi A to Rikishi C: “If I face ____, I want him to fall for me.  I win tomorrow, then I’ll lose to ____.”

12 May Rikishi A to Rikishi C: “I think the best idea is to do some tsuppari, then while receiving the tsuppari in the chest, near the end ____ will cut to the right and finish with a force-out or belt-less arm-throw.”

23 May Rikishi D to Rikishi C: “Can you give me next basho?  If not, please return the 200,000.”

   In the evening, JSA Commissioner Hanaregoma held an emergency news conference where he arrived more than a half hour late for the live televised event, then proceeded to tell everyone how this must be handled “promptly,” as it is very important.  “Today’s issue is a problem which affects the sumo world at its core.  We will put together an ad hoc investigation committee, and after a thorough investigation, and if the facts are true we will handle this strictly.”  The committee will consist of seven members not affiliated with the JSA.  When asked when he wanted to have this issue resolved, he replied “we will work as soon as possible.  There is no timeframe, but I want to see this all resolve by the Haru Basho in March.”

4 responses to “Evidence of Bout-Fixing in Sumo Leads to Investigation

  1. fuck… not again… Here comes another lost basho… I wonder if NHK will cut the broadcast of this one too.

  2. I should mention that the named nine rikishi and one elder who were summoned are not necessarily among the eleven rikishi and two elders whose names were included in the emails.

  3. It appears from the news that the above “Rikishi C” has been identified as Kasuganishiki and “Rikishi D” as Kiyoseumi.

  4. reconsidering my Banzuke prediction… is it too late to make new sekitori?

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