The loser in Miyamoto Musashi's most famous duel. The duel took place in 1612, on Ganryu Island. Kojiro was said to have perfected a "Swallow Counter" Technique inspired by the motion of a swallow's tail in flight. So confident was he of his technique, that he challenged Musashi to a duel. The duel was at 8 in the morning, but Musashi decided to show up late to anger Kojiro. On the boat ride to the island, Musashi took one of the oars and fashioned a wooden sword out of it. When they arrived at the site of the duel, Kojiro was so upset at Musashi's lateness, he threw away his scabbard and held his sword ready. Musashi ran at him and hit him over the head once with the wooden sword, killing him. That was the end of poor Kojiro.

Sasaki Kojiro was famous for being somewhat vain about his admittedly handsome appearance. Women loved him, and he prided himself on his beautiful hair. In an early encounter, Musashi sliced off Sasaki's topknot. Perhaps this humiliation started their rivalry--they had more than one duel. They're a famous pair of rivals, and an allusion to them represents worthy rivals in Japanese culture.

The character Ukyo Tachibana in Samurai Shodown is loosely based on Sasaki.

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