One of sumo’s two present yokozuna (grand champions) may have just cemented his place in the sport’s history last weekend, but far fewer people were watching than just a decade earlier. Could playing cards help rekindle interest?
The traditional Japanese sport has been simultaneously battling two nebulous forces: controversy and apathy. Not only are popularity and new recruits dropping, but at the same time a number of scandals continue to fester. There was the hazing death of a young wrestler in 2007, the recent accusations ofspecial treatment of yakuza bosses in Nagoya and an assault charge and civil suit filed this month by atokoyama (sumo hair stylists). And, of course, few have forgotten the marijuana busts.
Read the full piece at Japan Pulse.