I was at a sticking point again with Yoshida during sparring. I can pass the guard by sticking very close to him but once I go to move my arm to underhook his neck he manages to hold off the arm and shrimp away. It's frustrating as well as tiring. I need to find a way past this. A potential new member came for a trial lesson. I sparred with him a few times and he was very strong with excellent balance. I asked him later if he had done anything. He said he had done judo for 5-6 years. Another one! It makes me wish I had done judo as a kid. I suspect he had done more than that because he was very good at returning to guard and scrambled well. I understand that new people don't want to tell the full story on their MA history. That's cool. People like to downplay things over here in Japan. They call it Tatemae (建前) or polite face. He made such a good opponent that I sparred with him a second time. I only caught him once with a bow and arrow choke and after that failed to pin him down because he was so quick to scramble to his feet.
I need to chain attacks and once I achieve a good position I must not delay to move to attack. For example, I am prone to get into X-guard then just wait for the opponent to react. This is not good. I must make the first move. To attack is to make the opponent defend. If he is not made to defend, he will attack.
I talked to the guy, Kondo, after class and he seems a cheerful guy who enjoyed the sparring. He is an old friend of my instructor apparently. I hope he comes again. He is the same weight as me but 5 years younger. I told him that I need sparring partners in his range of weight so he needs to come again. Fingers crossed that he does. The tougher the sparring partner the better I get.
Sparring time: 6 x 6 mins = 36 minsNotable moments: Escaping from bad position especially from K-sensei's side control with a nice reversal.