Sawako Shimono: The Dirty Dirty Sheets Interview

One of the less well-known companies featured on CHIKARA’s Joshimania this weekend will be Osaka Joshi Puroresu, or DAIJO. It’s top star and US representative will be Sawako Shimono. While most woman toil for years before any similar recognition, Sawako Shimono began her career by immediately debuting in a main event. That was less than two years ago and since then she’s had a number of highlights in her career, the most recent being winning the JWP Jr. and POP (Princess of Pro Wrestling) titles from Kagetsu. Joshimana presents Shimono an amazing opportunity to show her skills abroad this weekend, amongst all time greats like Manami Toyota and Aja Kong. We caught up with Osaka Joshi’s young ace for a brief interview as she prepares for her trip to America.

Photos by Mascara Amigos Flying Suihanki (@flying_suihanki) and Aoikougei.

Please tell us when you made your debut and against whom.

My first opponent was Kagetsu from Sendai Girls Pro Wrestling on March 21, 2010.

Prior to that, you were experienced in other sports, correct? Who trained you to become a pro wrestler?

I practiced judo for 12 years. I have a first degree black belt in it. I trained Puroresu at Osaka Pro Wrestling’s school.

Until my debut, Rie Nakamura [Bad Nurse Nakamura, formerly of FMW] trained me. Recently, I have studied under GAMI who is president of the Pro Wrestling WAVE, and also a forewoman of Osaka Joshi.

What made you decide to become a professional wrestler? Why have you chosen Osaka Joshi as your home as opposed to Pro Wrestling WAVE?

I was invited to join when I went to the Puroresu school. It was just in time, as I was wondering whether to quit the job and return to my hometown or start new work. I thought this life might be good, I decided.

I am referred to as a starting member of the Osaka Joshi. There was an absence of junior and senior wrestlers. I’m interested in the fact that we built it up from nothing.

What are your finishing moves.

Ebisu Otoshi, Raiden Drop, Nandeyanen!

Who are some of the wrestlers that you emulate and have inspired you? Your greatest rivals?

There is no wrestler I emulate.

The wrestler that inspired me is Tadasuke of Osaka Pro Wrestling. He is the wrestler who caused me to begin to look at professional wrestling. I think, my rivals are wrestlers from my same generation and Kagetsu.

One year and eight months after your debut, who is the most impressive wrestler you’ve faced? And what is your greatest match?

All of my the matches in my 10 Match Challenge series, that began in January 2011. Especially against Kaori Yoneyama that was my 1st anniversary match. And also, the final round of that series against Kagetsu. Also, my match against Aja Kong October 30, 2011.

You hold the JWP Jr. & POP title. How did it feel to become the champion? Moreover, are there any titles you aim to win next?

I was very glad and I can not express with words. At this time I am not challenging for other titles, as I feel a strong sense of responsibility as the JWP Jr. and POP champion.

You will be wrestling for CHIKARA in the U.S. soon. What do you think of this show? What do you hope to show American fans?

I’m very, very excited about the shows in the US! I have the least experience among the Japanese wrestlers, but I will do my best not hide among senior wrestlers.

What are your goals in your wrestling career?

My present goal is to continue to holding the JWP Jr. and POP titles and break the defense record.

Do you have any hobbies? And What is your favorite food?

My hobbies are cycling and visiting various cafeterias. My favorite food is white rice, strawberry jam and margarine bread.

Is there anything else you would like to say to your current and future fans?

Thank you for always giving me a lot of support. I will continue every day to face every challenge and then grow bigger as, “The face of Osaka Joshi Sawako Shimono.”

Thank you for replying to our interview today. We look forward to your future and wild rampage in the U.S.

Thank you very much!

Learn more about Sawako Shimono by following her on Twitter (@sawako_shimono) and her blog. Also check her complete match history, as organized by Flying Suihanki. Here is her JWP Jr. Title & POP Title defense against Nao Komatsu of OZ academy this past August at Korakuen Hall.


DDS: こんにちは。まずはあなたのキャリアをお聞かせください。 あなたがプロレスデビューした日はいつで、対戦相手は?

SS: こんにちは。デビュー戦は2010年3月21日、対戦相手はセンダイガールズプロレスリングの花月選手です。

DDS: デビューまでにやっていたスポーツは? どこでプロレスのトレーニングをつみましたかか? デビューまでの、そして今のあなたのコーチは?

SS: スポーツ歴は柔道を十二年間やっていました。初段です。大阪プロレスのプロレス教室で練習しました。

DDS: プロレスラーになろうと思ったきっかけは? なぜ、WAVEではなく、OSAKA女子?

SS: プロレス教室に通っていたところを、声を掛けられて。声を掛けられた時期に丁度、今の職場を辞めて実家に帰るか・・・他の仕事を始めるか・・・迷っていた時期でもありました。そんな時に声を掛けられて、こんな人生もありかな?と決意しました。



DDS: 得意技は何ですか。

SS: 雷電ドロップ、えびす落とし、なんでやねん!です。

DDS: 目標とするレスラー、影響を受けたレスラーは誰ですか? また、ライバルは?

SS: 目標とするレスラーは居ません。影響を受けたレスラーはタダスケ選手(大阪プロレス)です。プロレスを見始めるきっかけになった選手です。


DDS: デビュー以来1年8ヶ月、今まで試合をした選手で印象に残っている選手、一番印象に残っている試合は?

SS: 2011年1月から始まった、十番勝負の全て(特に一周年の米山香織戦、最終戦の花月戦)と、2011年10月30日の対アジャ・コング戦です。

DDS: あなたはJWP認定ジュニア&POP王座を保持しています、奪取したときの感想は? また、次に狙いたいタイトルはありますか?

SS: 言葉に表せられない嬉しい気持ちと同時に、挑戦者ではなくなり、王者としての強い責任感を感じました。

DDS: CHIKARA JOSHIMANIAにむけての意気込み、「下野佐和子のここを見てほしい」というところをおねがいします。

SS: とにかくアメリカでの試合が楽しみで楽しみで仕方ありません! 日本から行くメンバーの中ではキャリアも一番下ですが・・・大先輩たちの中に埋もれてしまうことの無いよう、精一杯頑張りたいと思います。

DDS: プロレスでの目標は?

SS: 今の目標はJWP認定Jr.とPOP選手権のタイトル保持、防衛記録の更新です。

DDS: 趣味と、好きな食べ物を教えて下さい。

SS: 趣味はサイクリング、カフェ巡りです。好きな食べ物は白いご飯、イチゴジャムマーガリンのパンです。

DDS: あなたのファン、そしてこれからファンになる人々に向けて特別なメッセージをお願いいたします。

SS: ファンの皆さん、いつも沢山の応援ありがとうございます。これからも日々何事にも「挑戦」し、OSAKA女子プロレスの下野佐和子として大きく成長していけるよう、頑張りますので応援宜しくお願い致します!

DDS: 今日はわれわれのインタビューにお答えいただき、ありがとうございます。今後のご活躍、アメリカでの大暴れに期待します。

SS: ありがとうございます!

Bonus video! Shimono’s appearance on Yomiuri TV in February 2011.


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