By Michael Ishimatsu-Prime, Senior Staff Writer
Live commentary by Hamish Robison (See below)
The 57th AJKC at the Nippon Budokan has just finished. As usual, KW were there reporting on the main event in the kendo calendar. This year, as we did last year, we brought you up-to-date information and results. See the tournament summary, tournament ladder, competitor profiles and Hamish's live feed below. Also, for those of you who do not live in Japan or could not watch NHK, we will be uploading videos to our YouTube page
as soon as we can.
Uchimura Ryoichi (L - Tokyo Police) about to strike the winning yoko men on Takahashi Hidehito (Tokyo Police) for his second All Japan Kendo Championships title. Photo by Bruce Flanagan.
Teramoto(R) takes men to even the score against Shikano of Yamanashi at the start of the second round. Teramoto won 2-1 (MK-M). Photo by Bruce Flanagan.
So the dust has settled on what turned out to be an intriguing 57th All Japan Kendo Championships, full of thrills and spills, upsets and shocks at the Nippon Budokan in central Tokyo.
On shiai-jo 1, Teramoto started off in convincing fashion winning with a well timed kaeshi-do against Norimoto, the doctor from Tottori in his third championships, who made a good account of himself. A big upset followed when Wako (Hokkaido), last year’s runner-up, was defeated by Shikano, a teacher representing Yamanashi. You would have thought that Wako, being a policeman, would have won this encounter therefore setting up a tantalizing second round tie against Teramoto. However, Shikano was apparently destined for Tokyo police but due to a family tragedy he became a teacher. His record before this tournament, his third entry, was impressive winning the Kokutai and also with the mighty Kokushikan University finishing second and third in the individual university championships. At only 25 years of age, he will surely be another to keep an eye on in the future.
Another massive upset occurred on shiai-jo 2 when defending champion Shodai (Kanagawa) fought Oishi (Osaka), and was defeated. Shodai was many people’s favourite this year but there was a real buzz surrounding Oishi, who at 24, was the second youngest in the competition. Qualifying from the Osaka group cannot be easy but Oishi has real pedigree winning both the team and individual