Japan hosts poem boxing championships

| Posted in Funny News |


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The verbal sparring takes place in a boxing ring and each contestant is given three minutes to deliver a poem. The panel of judges awards points for originality and style, as well as the delivery of the piece, before declaring the winner.

Unlike chess boxing however, where contestants are required to alternate between a round of chess and boxing, the poets do not have to spar at any point.

The 16 final regional rounds are presently taking place ahead of the national final, which is to be held on October 16 at the Nikkei Hall in Tokyo.

Katsunori Kusunoki, from Kanto Gakuin University, said he created the event because he wanted young people to overcome their shyness and reluctance to participate

He added that by putting contestants into a ring, he has turned it into a popular spectator sport.

The subject matter for the poems range from politics and philosophy to everyday situations. The combatants are permitted to use props, but those that score the highest rely on their words, voice and delivery, Kusunoki said.

In the final round of the tournament, the two contestants still standing will be required to improvise a poem incorporating a word thrown at them by the judges. The winner of last year’s event came up with a work on butter.

A new division has been added to the tournament this year, with eight teams of three amateur poets battling it out in the ring in a tag team format.

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