And another three months
Our man in Japan, Adi Jones,
continues his report
Part 4 in an ongoing series
it's getting colder here now, and morning running is unfortunately becoming a thing of the
past. I have a bad ankle, but half the reason is that my bed is a lot warmer. Since my back
injury in the summer I have been finding it harder to keep up with these young whipper-snappers.
As this term comes to an end, the 4th year students are preparing for graduation, and so they
don't train as much. Hence in randori there are less players now. The sad thing is that in
this Japanese system, judo is very popular at junior and university level, but once players
graduate they retire from judo altogether. The Japanese system produces so many great players,
and then once they finish their education they are unlikely to go back into a dojo again.
Unless these 4th year students get a job as a teacher, or in the police, or at a company where
there is a strong judo club, their judo will most likely come to an end. Adult judo in municipal
dojos, as exists in Britain and most of the rest of the world, is not as common here. What
a waste of all that talent and years of hard work. Adult judo, judo for fun and social reasons,
and the veterans judo is not, in my experience, very prevalent in Japan and that is a shame.
Last week there was a foreigners judo competition held in Osaka (13 hours drive away from
the university!). The competition was open to any foreigner living in Japan and all expenses
were paid. We all entered from the university and competed along with another couple of hundred
judoka from 31 different countries. Japan also had a strong representation which was quite
surprising (seeing as though it was supposed to be for foreigners and local Japanese only),
and along with Korea, they shared the medals haul. The competition had individuals in the
morning (based on age categories, not weight), and then a team competition in the afternoon,
in which Budai got 3rd.
Also representing Britain along with myself
was Karen Harrison from Bath who brought along her very nice coach Atsuko Nagai (formerly
of Bisham). The competition was great fun and the party and drinking competition afterwards
was even better.
Ricky (USA) Fan Ti (CHN), Li Jun (CHN), Don Li (CHN), Hector (CHI),Tessu (KOR), Wayne
(HKG), Henry (PER), Chippi (ROM)
Kneeling: Johnathon (MEX), Battbold (MON), Akapei (TONGA), Bunasawa Senei,
Erica (MON), and me, Adi Jones Great Britain
It made a nice end to the year.
Winter training awaits ! ! !
HAJI AKHONDZADEH, Masoud (IRI)
KIM, Hyung Ju (KOR)
CHOI, Yong Sin (KOR)
AKIYAMA, Yoshihiro (JPN)
YAZAKI, Yuta (JPN)
SUZUKI, Keiji (JPN)
MUNETA, Yauyuki (JPN)
INOUE, Kosei (JPN)
KITADA, Kayo (JPN)
LEE, Eun Hee (KOR)
HONG, Ok Song (PRK)
TANIMOTO, Ayumi (JPN)
QIN, Dongya (CHN)
JO, Soo Hee (KOR)
SUN, Fuming (CHN)
TONG, Wen (CHN)