Match 33: Mens Individual: 17th All Japan Tankendo Championships

Commentary by Simon Larsen

I am not a judge, these are just my ideas watching the match.

Baptiste is a big fan of Setei and uses a technique where if the initial do strike doesn’t succeed he moves into a setei attack. I like this technique a lot (but can’t do it) and think if it even makes contact it can put doubt into the opponents mind with regard to using blocking techniques. Doing it on the opening charge was a good idea I think.

Takashi experimented with the traditional “give them a cuddle” to stop seitei (00:37) but that technique is unlikely to score you points and so he moved on to using debana waza (00:46 and more successfully 00:49 – the strike missed but Baptiste was lucky there I think).

I think Takashi realised he was more mobile and he suddenly switched to attacking rather than counter attacking and scored with a waza I quite like; make a small circular motion around the opponents kissaki and then immediately strike the opening if the circle draws the opponent off centre (01:21). From then on Takashi usually blocked setei with a shoulder barge which might have given more openings after the failed setei.

Baptiste responded well to try and take the initiative back but Takashi responded with constant attacks and started varying them relying on his faster movement as Baptiste slowed down.

Taking Jodan certainly seemed to confuse Takashi, I don’t think I have seen it in shiai before. Takashi kept focus and quickly reverted to using debana waza which might be his favourite technique. It certainly seems to have settled any nerves Baptiste may have caused.

At about 2:30 Takashi appears to start losing energy (all that running can be tiring) and starts using more direct and simple attacks, none of them succeed however and he wins the match with a single point.

Watching the matches I think that attacking techniques tend to score more often that counter attacks. Also anything where your opponent has bad posture after the strike seems more likely to score. So I guess the message is stand up straight, attack and run around a lot.


Close points:

00:49 – The tanken slides off the do.

01:34 – Hard to see but if Baptiste landed then simultaneous strikes.

01:45 – I think the strike landed but Takashi stayed close, none of the judges even twitched. Maybe with zanshin this would have scored?

02:54 – I don’t know why that didn’t score

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