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Re: Question on Betsuseki

Minanogawa was Sekiwake Asashio when he quit Sumo Kyokai and performed
sumo independently from Kyokai in 1932. When he quit, he lost his shikona,
prestigious Asashio and started using his old name Minanogawa. When he was
allowed to return to Kyokai a year after, he started as "Makuuchi Betsuseki
(or Besseki)" and won makuuchi yusho with 11-0 record. He was promoted to
komusubi the next basho and recorded 8-3 and promoted to sekiwake. He won
yusho again the next basho with 9-2 record and promoted to ozeki. His two 
basho prior to his quitting was 0-0-15 and 1-10 both at sekiwake, so people
were surprised by the strong performance of Minanogawa when he came back
to Kyokai. He did not practice very hard before quitting, but by necessity, he
performed almost everyday while he was away from Kyokai, and it made him
much better rikishi. Eventually he became yokozuna in 1937.

"Makuuchi Betsuseki" was a very unusual rank name and it is similar to 
"tsukedashi" which is used when a good college rikishi starts ozumo at 
Makushita. It is used only when Kyokai recognize their skills are equivalent 
of the rank, but since they were not in the rank in previous basho, they won't
get any specific rank. My understanding is that both these "titles" means
"equivalent of".

The incident in 1932 is called Shunju-en Jiken or Tenryu Jiken, when many
rikishi quit Kyokai and the leader rikishi was Sekiwake Tenryu. A rumor said
that the main reason of this incident was that Komusubi Musashiyama was
promoted to ozeki with 8-2-1, but Sekiwake Tenryu with 8-3 was not promoted.
Both rikishi belonged to Dewanoumi-beya.


BANDEY さんが  3:10 PM 9/12/96 -0800ごろに
「Question on Betsuseki」の件で:
>Dear Abe-san,
>I've just found an interesting rank, which I didn't hear before.
>I read that in 1933's first basho won BETSUSEKI Minanogawa. What does 
>this rank mean?
>Thank you very much,
>                           Andras LEDECZI                    
>                          Debrecen, Hungary