Tickets on sale for Dec. 14-15 Grand Sumo Tournament Okinawa

by Shoji Kudaka
Stripes Okinawa

The Grand Sumo Exhibition Match, or Oozumou Okinawa Basho, is set to make its way back to Okinawa for a stop on the 2019 Winter Tour Dec. 14-15.

Amongst the wrestlers scheduled to compete are many high-ranking ones like Yokozuna and Oozeki.

Although this may be an exhibition event, this circuit is designed to offer both authentic and entertaining presentations of the old martial art. And, one of the biggest features is expected to be a knockout tournament.

While regular tournaments, held six times per year, apply a system similar to round-robin where wrestlers enter the ring once a day, this two-day contest will bring winners back to the ring several times a day until it comes down to the last man standing.

Prior to the bouts, catch various ceremonies like the Sumo Jinku, a folksong dedicated to sumo wrestling, and Yokozuna Dohyou Iri, which is Yokozuna’s entrance to the ring accompanied by two wrestlers as attendants. After the bouts, Yumitorishiki, a victory dance with a bow, will be performed to make this just as much a competition as a cultural presentation.

Keep an eye out for “shokirri,” a unique feature of this circuit which allows wrestlers to play dirty in a similar manner of heels in professional wrestling. There will also be “Chibikko sumo,” a comical side of the old martial art where kids enter the ring to challenge the wrestlers, Sumo wrestlers are famous for starting their day early in the morning. This applies to their tour in Okinawa as well.

Starting 9 a.m., the public can get a peek into early training sessions. There will also be plenty of chankonabe, known as sumo stew, famous for feeding hulking sumo wrestlers, on sale from vendors at the venue.

Don’t miss the opportunity to interact with the wrestlers. Unlike regular tournaments where wrestlers find themselves in a tense feeling, this fan-friendly event which allows for chatting and taking photos with the crowd.

If you’ve yet to check out one of Japan’s traditional martial arts, make sure to get to the Grand Sumo Tournament Okinawa and enjoy this unique experience you can only experience here.

Grand Sumo (Exhibition) Tournament
DATE: Dec. 14 – 15
TIME: 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.
LOCATION: Uruma City Gushikawa Dome
GPS COORDINATES: N 26.360001, E 127.866838
*Tickets available at MCCS Okinawa: https://www.mccsokinawa.com/mccsoki2015/_sub2015.1.0.aspx?cid=4294978936&pglot=-1
Ticket price (in order of the nearest seats to the ring to the farthest): Tamari SS ($133), Tamari S ($124), Pair Masu seat ($210), Chair seat A ($76), and Table Seat Max 4 ($238).
Souvenir Package with a bento meal, a drink, and sumo goods- $48 for Yokozuna, $29 for Ozeki
For more info, contact MCCS Tours+ at 646-3502

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