Press release text used courtesy of the Delegation of the European Commission to Japan. (edited by Mark Buckton)
On April 24th, the European Union will present ozeki Kotooshu with a kesho-mawashi ceremonial apron to mark his success in Japan’s national sport. The apron will also serve as a symbol of friendship between the EU and Japan.
The design of the apron shown was selected from over 200 entries received in a competition organized by the Delegation of the European Commission to Japan.
After three rounds of screening designs, two entries were selected for use in the design of the final kesho-mawashi.
The designers of the winning entries are Mr. Yuya Fujino (Tokyo) and Mr. Kyoji Fujiki (Gifu).
The chosen design for the apron will contain a circle of the twelve stars of the EU flag with the kanji character that stands for “Europe” in the center. This kanji will be presented in a rainbow color motif, symbolizing cooperation between Europe and Japan.
The ceremonial handing over of the kesho-mawashi to Kotooshu will take place on April 24th in advance of the May Grand Sumo Tournament.
Mark Buckton covers sumo for The Japan Times Online as well as being Editor-in-Chief of the online Sumo Fan Magazine. Look for articles just before and after each honbasho as well as a column in the quieter months between basho.