Haguroyama Masaji

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Haguroyama Masaji
羽黒山 政司
Haguroyama.jpg
Personal information
Born Masaji Kobayashi
(1914-11-18)November 18, 1914
Niigata, Japan
Died October 14, 1969(1969-10-14) (aged 54)
Height 1.79 m (5 ft 10 12 in)
Weight 129.5 kg (285 lb)
Career
Stable Tatsunami
Record 359-99-117-1 draw
Debut January, 1934
Highest rank Yokozuna (May, 1941)
Retired September, 1953
Championships 7 (Makuuchi)
1 (Jūryō)
1 (Makushita)
1 (Sandanme)
1 (Jonidan)
1 (Jonokuchi)
* Up to date as of October 2007.

Haguroyama Masaji (羽黒山 政司, November 18, 1914 – October 14, 1969) was a sumo wrestler from Nakanokuchi, Niigata, Japan. He was the sport's 36th yokozuna.[1] He was a yokozuna for a period of twelve years and three months dating from his promotion to that rank in May 1941 until his retirement in September 1953,[1] which is an all-time record. During his career Haguroyama won seven top division championships and was runner-up on six other occasions. However, he was always in the shadow of yokozuna Futabayama Sadaji, who came from the same stable.[2] After his retirement he was the head coach of Tatsunami until his death in 1969.

Career[edit]

Haguroyama made his professional debut in January 1934 at age 19, joining Tatsunami stable. His progression was remarkably rapid. He passed through all the lower divisions in just one tournament each,[2] in every case winning the divisional championship – a feat unlikely ever to be equalled. He made his debut in the top makuuchi division in May 1937. He was promoted to the ōzeki rank after just one tournament at sekiwake. After finishing as runner-up in the January 1941 tournament and winning his first top division title in May 1941 he was promoted to yokozuna. After three more runner-up performances he won his first championship as a yokozuna in May 1944.

Upon the retirement of his great rival Futabayama in November 1945 he became dominant, winning four tournaments in a row. However in November 1947 he severed his Achilles tendon and was out of action until May 1949.[3] He won his final championship in January 1952 at age 37 with a perfect 15–0 record. It was his first tournament win in over four years. He retired in September 1953, when he was nearly 39.

He was known for his hard training and his great strength, and was said to be "made of steel."[2]

Retirement from sumo[edit]

Haguroyama married the daughter of his stablemaster, which enabled him to become head coach of Tatsunami stable after retiring from the ring.[2] He produced ōzeki Wakahaguro and several other top wrestlers. When he died in 1969 the title of Tatsunami Oyakata passed onto his son-in-law, former sekiwake Annenyama.[2]

Top Division Record[edit]

  • Through most of the 1930s and 1940s only two tournaments were held a year, and in 1946 only one was held. The New year tournament began and the Spring tournament returned to Osaka in 1953.
Haguroyama Masaji[4]
- Spring
Haru basho, Tokyo
Summer
Natsu basho, Tokyo
Autumn
Aki basho, Tokyo
1937 x West Maegashira #16
9–4
 
Not held
1938 East Maegashira #5
10–3
 
East Komusubi
7–6
 
Not held
1939 East Komusubi
8–4–1
 
East Sekiwake
11–4
 
Not held
1940 East Ōzeki
11–4
 
East Ōzeki #1
7–5–3
 
Not held
1941 West Ōzeki
14–1
 
West Ōzeki
14–1
 
Not held
1942 East Yokozuna
13–2
 
East Yokozuna
2–4–9
 
Not held
1943 West Yokozuna
13–2
 
East Yokozuna
14–1
 
Not held
1944 West Yokozuna
12–3
 
East Yokozuna
10–0
 
East Yokozuna
7–3
 
1945 Not held East Yokozuna
5–2
 
East Yokozuna
10–0
 
1946 Not held Not held West Yokozuna
13–0
 
1947 Not held East Yokozuna
9–1
 
East Yokozuna
10–1
 
1948 Not held Sat out due to injury Sat out due to injury
1949 Sat out due to injury West Yokozuna
11–4
 
West Yokozuna
12–3
 
1950 East Yokozuna
6–4–5
 
East Yokozuna
12–3
 
West Yokozuna
4–1–10
 
1951 East Yokozuna
12–3
 
West Yokozuna
10–5
 
East Yokozuna
10–5
 
1952 East Yokozuna
15–0
 
East Yokozuna
7–3–5
 
East Yokozuna
4–3–8
 
- New Year
Hatsu basho, Tokyo
Spring
Haru basho, Osaka
Summer
Natsu basho, Tokyo
Autumn
Aki basho, Tokyo
1953 West Yokozuna
9–6
 
Sat out due to injury West Yokozuna
0–3–12
 
East Yokozuna
Retired
0–0–15
Record given as win-loss-absent    Top Division Champion Retired Lower Divisions

Sanshō key: F=Fighting spirit; O=Outstanding performance; T=Technique     Also shown: =Kinboshi(s); P=Playoff(s)
Divisions: MakuuchiJūryōMakushitaSandanmeJonidanJonokuchi

Makuuchi ranks: YokozunaŌzekiSekiwakeKomusubiMaegashira

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "The 36th Yokozuna Haguroyama Masaji". sumo.goo.ne.jp. Retrieved 2007-10-08. 
  2. ^ a b c d e Sharnoff, Lora (1993). Grand Sumo. Weatherhill. ISBN 0-8348-0283-X. 
  3. ^ "Takanohana is still star of the no-show". Japan Times. 2002-05-12. Retrieved 2007-07-25. 
  4. ^ "Haguroyama Masaji Rikishi Information". Sumo Reference. Retrieved 2007-07-26. 

External links[edit]

Previous:
Futabayama Sadaji
36th Yokozuna
1941–1953
Next:
Akinoumi Setsuo
Yokozuna is not a successive rank, and more than one wrestler can share the title