The famous and ancient Japanese sport of Sumo wrestling can be child's play ... at?
SV Sumo wrestlers preparing for battle circling each other
GV Wrestlers in action as crowd looks on
SCU Mr. Tokugawa playing sumo wrestling with paper figures
SV Paper sumo being played as children look on
CU Children watch paper sumo wrestling
CU Paper figures "Wrestling" and finish as one paper figure falls over
SV Results of paper sumo wrestling on scoreboard
GV Children watch yet another game of paper figures sumo wrestling
Initials BB/1535 GB/JB/BB/1600
SPORT: PAPER PUPPET WRESTLING
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: The famous and ancient Japanese sport of Sumo wrestling can be child's play ... at least according to Tokyo coffee-shop proprietor Tokugawa-san.
He claims that Sumo wrestling, Japan's most popular sport watched by millions during the season, is restricted because the total number of competitors is only 668.
He also says many Japanese would rather compete than watch. So, calling on that remarkable flair for adaptation that most Japanese have, Tokugawa-san invented his own form of Sumo wrestling.
In fact, he had just the background to do it. Tokugawa-san trained as a wrestler with one of the country's leading "stables", but had to drop out because he couldn't reach the average 250 pounds necessary for a sporting chance in the pastime of giants.
Tokugawa-san could only reach 200 pounds so he invented "Kami-sumo" (literally paper sumo) creating a sophisticated miniature wrestling game using puppets.
Tokugawa-san is also the official announcer, commentator, interviewer, judge and cheer leader for his wrestling matches....
Now the paper sumo league (of which Tokugawa-san is also President) has grown so much in popularity that the coffee shop proprietor has had to employ technicians to man the complicated electronic scoreboard which is an exact replica of the ones used at full-sized sumo stadiums.
The paperweight championships lack only the real grunt and groan of a proper match ... and of course the performers are about 500 pounds lighter.