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"Thanks to you, I remembered how much fun rugby is. But... There's a lot you don't know about rugby yet." Iwashimizu Sumiaki.

Iwashimizu Sumiaki ( 石清水澄明 ) is a first-year lock at Kanagawa Prefectural High School and the deuteragonist of the series. He first started playing rugby at Agatsuma Middle School after being invited to the club by Miyuki Atsushi. In their third year, he badly broke Miyuki's right shoulder during a practice game just before the prefectural finals.

He quit rugby for about half a year between the end of the prefectural tournament in middle school and the beginning of his first year of high school.

Appearance[]

Iwashimizu is a very tall young man, being the second tallest in the entire series. He has amber eyes and chin-length, straight, blonde hair. He is rather lanky for a forward, especially at the beginning of the series, but he grows more muscular as time goes on. It is said that Iwashi always wears a worried expression. He is blushing more often than not, and his eyes frequently appear glassy. His facial features are generally regarded as quite handsome.

His usual school uniform consists of a white button-up shirt, black trousers, and an optional black gakuran, which he prefers to carry around rather than wear. His uniform is too small for him, but he's too ashamed to have it replaced as he's already had to size up so many times.

During matches, he wears a tight-fitting red jersey with Jinkou's kanji written on the left pectoral, two black stripes around the chest, and a white collar; the jersey has a white number 5 imprinted on the back to indicate his position. He also sports white shorts and spikes, as well as black tape around his thighs to increase friction when the props lift him during line-outs.

Iwashimizu generally wears comfortable loungewear on his days off, such as loose t-shirts and joggers. He is also often seen wearing sweaters layered over polos. He owns a Jinkou Rugby Club windbreaker, but he rarely wears it as even the largest size is too short for his figure. Many of his tops are too wide for him, as only plus-sizes fit him length-wise.

Personality[]

Iwashimizu is a timid, sensitive wallflower. He would typically much prefer books to sports, but he is quite devoted to rugby. Initially, this was merely an extension of his devotion to Miyuki, but it grew into a genuine passion for the sport after he joined the high school team. Rugby also provides a healthy outlet for his surprisingly short temper.

Being an introspective person, Iwashimizu has a tendency to overthink. He has a noticeably hard time making decisions on his feet and is often singled out by his opponents as being slow. He struggles a lot with insecurity and anxiety; he spiraled into a severe depressive episode after the incident with Miyuki. It took longer for Iwashimizu to mentally recover from the guilt than for Miyuki to physically recover from the injury.

Iwashi is highly encouraging toward his friends. He always lends a listening ear when they have something to complain about, and he has been shown to become very sentimental when he feels they are growing as people, so much so that he tears up over seemingly insignificant details, like when he started crying after hearing Sekizan and Hachiouji's meeting story. Furthermore, his subservient and self-effacing nature entails he often get pushed around by the more dominant personalities of Miyuki, Gion, and Ooharano, but he doesn't seem to mind this and is usually content enough just being included. In fact, it is often said that his rugby performance is merely a reflection of the skill and spirit of his teammates, and at the beginning of the series he couldn't tap into his competitive energy without someone else riling him up. With all of that being said, he is the protective type; while he rarely contests when he himself is being walked over, he does not tolerate anyone mistreating his friends.

He is self-conscious about being so big and tends to have anxiety about taking up too much space or getting in others' way. Before the start of every game, he checks if there is anyone on the opposing team that appears to be taller than him.

Plot[]

Background[]

On Iwashimizu's first day of middle school, he meets Miyuki Atsushi, who invites him to the rugby club on behalf of his height. Though Iwashi had never been the athletic type, Miyuki's enthusiasm and bright smile persuade him to join. It is here that he also meets third year Hachiouji Mutsumi and fellow first year Oku Yuuri, the latter of whom takes an immediate disliking to him that would last the entirety of middle school. Initially, he requires special training with Miyuki in order to learn how to move his body correctly.

When Iwashimizu is in his third year, Miyuki becomes the captain of the team. They have an incredible winning season up until a scrimmage just before the prefectural finals: while holding the ball, Iwashi bulldozes straight through Miyuki, fending off an attempted tackle. Miyuki, in turn, suffers a broken shoulder as he hits the ground, meaning he's out of commission for the rest of the season. Azuma loses their next game and does not qualify for the national tournament. Miyuki swears that Iwashi doesn't need to feel guilty—it was an accident, after all—but Oku, who was then the vice-captain, blames him for their loss entirely. In the end, Iwashimizu resigns from the club, planning to quit rugby for good.

Due to a combination of the guilt from the incident itself and the loneliness from cutting off his friends, Iwashimizu spirals into a depressive episode. At school, he appears nervous and absent-minded. He does everything in his power to avoid his former teammates, especially Miyuki and Oku. At home, he is despondent; his mother notes that he hardly ever leaves his room during this period. Funnily enough, this is about the time he becomes infatuated with the romance genre.

Semester One[]

Entering Jinkou[]

During the orientation ceremony, a few upperclassmen whisper about Iwashimizu's staggering height. He has barely made it to his locker after school when he bumps into a group of unnamed third years, who badger him for taking up so much space. He frantically apologizes, and the third years crack a few jokes about his balls being too small for the rest of his body before promptly deciding someone of his timid nature would make the perfect lackey. It is then that Gion, another first year whom is more than 30 centimeters (1 foot) shorter than Iwashimizu, enters the hall. As he struggles to reach his high locker, the third years turn their attention to him, at this point howling with laughter, as they call him a shrimp and make a few creative comments comparing the two freshmen.

Suddenly, Gion jumps the upperclassmen, offended that they called him a shrimp. He starts to attack them, but Iwashimizu picks him up over his head, the upperclassmen assuming he's going to throw Gion at them as a weapon. Then, having intended to disperse the fight before anyone could do any real damage, Iwashi runs away. They exit the building like this, and Iwashi continues to run until Gion's struggling grows powerful enough to knock the both of them over. Gion yells at Iwashi, questioning why he had to go and pick him up, to which Iwashi meekly says Gion was going to get hurt if he hadn't stepped in.

When Iwashimizu thanks Gion for sticking up for him, the latter responds by saying that he was just pissed about the short jokes; Iwashi just happened to also be getting picked on. He claims to hate cowardly types like Iwashimizu. The two finally introduce themselves and begin walking toward the main building, Gion once again shouting at Iwashi for a moment under the assumption Iwashi was following him, before promptly realizing they absolutely had to go in the same direction. They walk in silence for a bit and start speaking at the same time, only for Iwashimizu to skittishly usher Gion to go ahead. He laments about how being held up so high gave him perspective on how much tall guys can see and do compared to him. Suddenly, he loses his temper and jumps onto Iwashi, grabbing him by the shirt, hounding him about what kind of diet he has that made him grow so big. In his anger, he opens up about his insecurity that everyone is looking down on him because of his height.

Before the conversation can continue, Hachiouji tackles Iwashi from behind, trapping Gion beneath him. Hachi exclaims that he didn’t expect Iwashimizu to be attending his school and asks if he’d hit another growth spurt. Then, Gion makes his presence known by popping out from under Iwashi. After introductions, Hachiouji asks if Gion wants to come to the rugby club with he and Iwashi.

At the rugby ground, Hachiouji joins the scrimmage at practice. Gion had never heard of rugby before, so Iwashimizu explains the basics of the game: carry the ball to the opponent’s goal in order to score, and use brute force to take the ball back if the opponent is the one carrying it. Iwashi tells him he was scouted because big guys like him have an advantage, but really anyone could be the star no matter if they were tall, short, fat, thin, or anything in between. Gion is mesmerized at the idea of being able to steal the ball from someone huge, but Iwashi grows anxious and begins rambling about how dangerous rugby is.

When the scrim ends and Hachiouji returns, Gion declares he’s going to join the rugby team and demands that Iwashimizu teach him everything he knows. However, Iwashi declines and begins to walk away, claiming he won’t be joining the rugby club because he doesn’t play anymore.

The next day, Iwashimizu attempts to join the literature club. All is well until Gion barges into the clubroom, shines a fake smile, and drags him to the rugby field. Since everyone else is out recruiting new members, the pair has all of the ground and equipment to themselves. Gion tosses a tackle bag at him, effectively forcing Iwashi to be his training partner. Iwashi is intimidated by how quickly Gion started wanting to tackle, since it is typically something new rugby players are scared of. Gion then decides that Iwashimizu should tackle him first as a demonstration, and the latter voices a concern that Gion would get seriously hurt if he were to be tackled by someone Iwashi's size. Gion argues that he can take it as long as he doesn't run from it.

Before Iwashimizu can respond, Gion tells him that Hachiouji told him about what happened to Miyuki. Iwashimizu recalls the injury, and the loss that followed, internally apologizing to Miyuki. He is pulled back to reality when Gion claims that anyone who could get hurt from someone like Iwashimizu is just weak. This whips Iwashi into a frenzy, and he flies at Gion, yells at him for speaking badly of Miyuki, and tackles him rather violently. For a moment, as he sees Gion strewn across the ground, he relives Miyuki's injury, believing that he had done the same to Gion. To his surprise, Gion begins to laugh. He enjoys the rush of the pain. Gion exclaims that rugby is really fun, which reminds Iwashimizu of the first time he had met Miyuki. Just as Iwashi starts to cry from the sentiment of it all, Gion demands he treat him to food as payment for how painful the tackle was.

They go out for burgers. Gion trolls Iwashimizu by trying to order a hundred teriyaki burgers, and Iwashi scolds him for doing so.

The next day, the first years officially join the team. There are seven in total, including Iwashimizu and Gion, and they all line up for introductions. Iwashi is already anxious from the pressure of meeting new people, but his anxiety grows when he meets the captain, Sekizan Takuya, due to his intense look and large size. Iwashimizu is too nervous to speak when it comes time for him to introduce himself, so Hachiouji, as vice-captain, fills in the information for him. The first years are separated into those with experience (to follow Sekizan) and those without (to follow Hachiouji). Accompanied by Ooharano Etsugo, the only other first year with rugby experience, Iwashi walks off, left to wonder if the hyperactive Gion will be able to contain himself.

Only a few seconds later, Gion starts making a scene. He wants to practice tackling instead of just getting used to the ball. Sekizan punishes him by pulling on his cheeks, and then gives him a chance to tackle him. Of course, Sekizan easily overpowers him. Iwashimizu looks on, terrified, and vocalizes his fear from the other side of the field.

Gion is assigned to do an exercise called the turtle in exchange for five tackles against Sekizan per day. Ooharano asks if he was friends with Gion in middle school, and Iwashi tells him that he wasn't. Ooharano mutters that Gion is a disgrace. Sekizan calls them over, and practice resumes as normal. At the end of the day, Gion is so tired he can barely stand.

For the next few days, Gion continues to do the turtle and his five tackles while the rest of the team does normal practice. One night, he remains on the field, catching his breath, after the rest of the team has already finished changing. Iwashimizu comes back to check if he's okay. He voices a concern that what Gion is doing is too intense for a beginner, and that he worries he'll grow to hate rugby because of such difficult work. Gion doesn't know what he's talking about, claiming that the turtle exercise taught him how to tackle. At first, Iwashi is confused by this. Gion explains that, while he was watching everyone else actually practice tackling, he was able to observe was differentiated a good tackle from a bad one: good tackle posture was straight like a spear, which is what the turtle helps improve. Iwashi is enamored by what he was able to learn.

Gion then says that Sekizan is just too big for him to take down on his own, even if he perfected his piercing tackle posture. They both decide Iwashi would make a good practice partner, since he and Sekizan are similar in height. Gion thanks Iwashimizu for stopping by and exclaims that he's going to blow Sekizan away. Together, they discover a technique that will surely work against the captain: diving low and aiming for the calves, as they are less muscular than the rest of the body.

At the end of practice the next day, Iwashimizu watches Gion tire himself out for the first four tackles. He is momentarily worried that he had forgotten their training the previous night, until Gion surprises everyone as he sends Sekizan into a backflip with a low tackle to his ankles. Gion bursts into laughter as everyone else is stunned, claiming he was acting tired on purpose so the captain would let his guard down. Iwashi, with a smile on his face, scolds him for pulling a stunt like that.

Jinkou-Keijou Scrimmage[]

During the team meeting where Sekizan briefs the team about the upcoming scrimmage against Keijou, Iwashi sits with the other forwards. Downtrodden at the idea of playing against Miyuki's new team, he asks Hachiouji if he really has to play. Because the team doesn't have another lock to take his place, and the scrim will serve as a good measure of skill and style for the first-years with experience, Iwashimizu is forced to play.

He is still having trouble by the time Saturday rolls around. On the train ride to Keijou, he is so wrapped up in his own mind that he forgets to duck when getting off and ends up bumping his forehead into the top of the train door (because he is so tall). Gion, ecstatic about his first game, questions why Iwashi looks so sad. Iwashimizu dismisses him, claiming to be totally fine, and Hachiouji gives him a sympathetic look, though he doesn't say anything.

Iwashimizu's spirits lighten somewhat during the walk to the school, and he is seen laughing at Kamo's and Gion's antics.

After getting changed into his jersey, his anxiety starts up again. He stares unto the field, struggling to keep his breathing steady, as Miyuki greets him. Iwashi asks if his shoulder has healed, to which Miyuki smacks him hard on the chest with his previously injured arm. Just as he is about to take a sigh of relief, the pair overhear Gion whining about not being allowed to play, complaining that if "Tree Trunk" was allowed to, then he should to. Miyuki is furious that this kid could be making fun of Iwashimizu, who tries to calm him down, insisting that Gion is a friend and he doesn't mean any harm. But Miyuki is already ranting about how strong and talented Iwashimizu is, telling Gion that he'll see when the game starts.

Golden Week Training Camp[]

Jinkou-Sagami Scrimmage[]

Arukimizu Beach[]

Jinkou-Keijou Interteam Scrimmage[]

Before Sugadaira[]

Sugadaira Training Camp[]

Entering Sugadaira[]

Jinkou-Tenjiku Scrimmage[]

Before Ryouin[]

Jinkou-Ryouin Scrimmage[]

Davos Hill[]

Hanazono Preliminaries[]

Tournament Preparations[]

Jinkou vs. Nozomigaoka[]

Jinkou vs. Hiratsuka[]

Keijou vs. Kamakura[]

Jinkou vs. Kamakura[]

Final Chapter[]

Skills[]

Powerful Fends[]

Offensively, Iwashimizu is as fast as a Number Eight and have great upper body strength, his powerful shoulder barges and fend offs (stiff arms) can hurt.

One-handed Grabs[]

In terms of differences between the two locks, as a Number-5, he is the closest receiver in a line out, which unlike a Number-4, who is often directly behind him that would hook the ball with his hand to the Scrum Half, his job is to secure the ball to set up a maul, but his big hands meant he can do so with just one hand, but he often chooses to hook the ball to the halfback as well to speed up the game. Since he is not heavy for a lock, he is often taken out by opponents in defensive lineout, or be completely thrown off-guard when opposing hookers aim for the other lock, or throwing it even further back to negate him.

"The Iwashi Lift" Choke Tackle[]

Tag-Team Tackle: Overpass[]

Iwashimizu begins to tackle an opponent. In the few seconds while he's still in the air, his feet serve as an overpass for Gion to dive beneath, taking out said opponent's ankles while he is distracted by Iwashi's size.

Relationship[]

Jinkou[]

Gion Kenji[]

Iwashimizu and Gion first became friends by circumstance. Their personalities are opposites in nearly every way, but perhaps that is what creates the balance in their friendship.

Keijou[]

Miyuki Atsushi[]

Iwashimizu initially started playing rugby when Miyuki invited him to join the middle school team. Iwashimizu harbours regret after he broke Miyuki's shoulder in a middle school practice, which made him fearful and unmotivated to play rugby. But they both defend each other from Gion's retorts, but both Gion and Miyuki constantly motivates him to give it his all.

Sagami[]

Kamakura[]

Other[]

Trivia[]

  • The first character of Iwashimizu's surname ("石") is more commonly read as "ishi" than "iwa."
  • He claims that his favorite literary genre is romance. Despite this, he has been shown to also enjoy grim, tragic stories.
    • According to the ALL OUT!! Official Character Book, a box set of novels by Dazai Osamu is at the top of his wishlist.
    • In one panel of the manga, he can be seen reading The Sorrows of Young Werther, a German book from just before the Romantic movement, in which the protagonist commits suicide at the end.
  • According to the ALL OUT!! Official Character Book, Iwashimizu is very attractive to the girls at school.
    • He is the most attractive of the first years in the rugby club.
    • He is the fourth most attractive member overall.
    • Still, he does not appear to be very interested in relationships with women.
  • His beverage of choice is barley tea. His family rarely drinks anything else.
  • When he was younger, he wanted to be a zookeeper. He particularly likes small, cute animals like bunnies and great, big animals like elephants.

    From chapter 2 of the manga

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