Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Sumo for dummiess

Trivia Questions:

1) How much salt is used per day in matches?

2) What is the minimum height and weight for you to be qualified to be Sumo Wreslter?
173cm, 75kg!!

3) How much does those fancy ceremonial aprons (Kesho-Mawashi) cost?
At least 2 million yen up to 100million yen. (20kUSD up to 1M USD)

When I first looked at the ticket price, 3600¥(pic abov), I thought it would be a pretty good seats, like near to the sumo ring, available garcon serving Oo-Long tea.... It turned out, USD36 just worth the 2nd floor last row in the sumo arena, first floor, first row, cost USD140, which doesnt even have chair! just a cushion for you to kneel on the floor.

I was there in the afternoon, just in time to see the Makuuchi (Senior Division) wrestlers ceremonial entrance. They stepped into the ring in their vividly decorated kesho-mawashi, received from their supporters or sponsors. The most expensive kesho-mawashi was 1M USD, featuring 5 diamonds, pearls, gold, silver thread embrodiery and other fine touches.

Watch the Grand entrance here.

Then it was Grand Champion (Yokozuna) Ring Entrance, accompanied by two two attendents, he stamp feets, to let the audience warm up their cheers before the actual match.

Before wrestling, sumo wrestlers have to do warm up. 1..2...1...2..... pictures showing Kotooshu origin from Bulgaria on the left vs Toyonoshima origin from Japan on the right.

After warm up, sip water handed out by the sumo wrestler from the previous match.

Then they have to grab a handful of salt, and toss it into the ring. ( Sipping water, and tossing salts are actually religious ritual, it is believed that salt purify the ring as a sacred place, sip water to purify their body and leg stamping the ring to supposedly squash the bad spirits). They repeat the whole purifying for one full minute.

Pic above shows the Grand champion Hakuho origin from Mongolia vs Baruto from Estonia. The flags are the sponsors for this particular match. In the final match, there were total 19 sponsors, winner take all the prizes, average match, normally just 1 or 2 sponsors.

watch the match here.

After the match, all of the sumo wrestlers wear Yukata, and walk out from the arena.

When they passby me, I went berserk, THEY WERE HUMONGOUS!! one stomp, I think i could die of heart attack already.

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