Up against 学習院大学 in the first round, we fought the good fight by giving it our all: as our senpo, 高橋君 pulled out all the stops with his nimble footwork and timed maneuvering in a valiant attempt to set a good pace for our team battle; 丸山 held his own for much of the match and mustered a inviolable defense posture as was the strategy that he had honed painstakingly up until now, though the lack of aggression and attacking initiative did not sit well with the umpires and eventually cost him the match, a hiccup that reared its ugly head again during ミン’s match.
The bright spot of the day came when 板羽 took his opponent down with a well-timed throw which translated into a waza-ari, and eventually took the set on points when the timer ran out.
▲高橋：There was the regrettable scene.
▲チーハオ：Attacking by newaza, but…
▲田澤：Aggressive attitude was not bad.
▲板羽① To return a blow.
▲板羽②His body was getting the movement.
Nobody fights a battle hoping to lose, of course, and our spirits were understandably a little down after the match, but, as our coach put it most succinctly, “There is much more to be learnt from a loss than a victory. When you win, you rejoice, but you also end up thinking, mistakenly perhaps, that you have done well and have no need to improve; when you lose, even if you were good to begin with already, you will definitely reflect on your weaknesses and start on the road to further improvement.”
Though three weeks is not a lot of time, there are still opportunities abound for sorting through the more minor kinks in each of our own styles and techniques, and you can rest assured that we will channel our disappointment from Sunday’s match into correcting our own little quirks with renewed vigor, all in time for the looming showdown on the twenty-third of this month.