Te Guruma Counter with Harai Goshi

Below is a clip from the 2010 Tokyo Grand Slam showing a beautiful counter of te guruma with harai goshi from the over-the-back grip. There are a few interesting things about this throw. First, blue’s te guruma (which obviously involves a leg grab) is legal because of white’s cross grip over the back. That’s one of the exceptions to the leg grab rule. On a side note, I don’t like the fact that at smaller local tournaments the refs don’t watch for that as closely. I love to do pickups against that grip, and have already been disqualified twice for it. I’m not going to stop doing it (unless I’m up on points), because it is still legal, and I would like to take full advantage of the rules.

The second interesting thing is the observation that the commentator makes about blue not stepping in front and under white with the te guruma attack. It’s tough to do obviously when white’s hips are turning all the way around for the harai, but still if you go for it and start standing up, you better have the opponent loaded up. It’s exciting to see judoka taking full advantage of the rule, and seeing that the refs understand the situation (given how quickly it all happens) to allow the te guruma.

Lastly, it’s great to see a harai from that over-the-back belt grip. It’s one of my favorite attacks and it’s always nice to see it done in international competition, proving that it CAN work well, especially with an incoming te-guruma attack.

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