NHK Sumo – Yea or Nay?

by Mark Buckton

NHK, Japan’s public broadcaster, is this week expected to make an announcement that will, in part, give either a thumbs up or a thumbs down to the continuation of their English language coverage of sumo tournaments.

While the possibility that the bilingual coverage, now in its 14th year, could be in jeopardy first surfaced in online sumo forums late in 2005, no answer confirming one way or the other has yet been given to the viewing public who will be hoping recent comments by Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi, in support of increasing English language broadcasts on NHK, will contribute to saving the broadcast from the chopping block.

At least one NHK source now indicates this to be the case with the bilingual broadcast itself safe and more than likely to see the next financial year.