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I dare to choose a bad wait, and then I win. That's the way I play. And that's the way I am.

—Hisa Takei

Hisa Takei
Hisa Takei
Personal info
Japanese name: 竹井 久 (上埜 久)
Birthday: November 13
School: Kiyosumi High School
Grade: Third-year high school
Media
Debut: Saki, Chapter 1
Voiced by: Shizuka Itou
Live-action actor: Seika Furuhata
Mahjong
Position: Lieutenant
Style: Targets strengths and weaknesses
Main skill/ability: Winning with bad waits
Stats
Knowledge: 5/5
Analysis: 5/5
Willpower: 5/5
Sense: 4/5
Luck: 3/5
Potential: 4/5
Speed: 2/5
Disruption: 4/5
Overall: 5/5

Hisa Takei is a third year student at Kiyosumi High School and is the current president of the mahjong club, as well as president of the school's student congress. She was formerly known as Hisa Ueno. Hisa has always wanted to enter the inter-high team mahjong tournament, but in previous years there weren't enough club members to form a five woman team.

Appearance

She has brown eyes, red shoulder length hair, and wears a standard Kiyosumi uniform with black pantyhose. She sometimes has an ahoge (emotional hair) on the top of her head.

Personality

Hisa is shown to be a great leader both while playing mahjong and outside of it. Hisa is very caring for her underclassmen like when she comforts Yuuki after her defeat in the prefectural tournament. She has good foresight and can be very scheming. She is shown to have great confidence in her mahjong ability and will not back down from a challenge. However, she did waver during the national tournament's second round but recovered soon after. Opponents have described her as having bad manners due to her slamming of the tiles during matches.

Playing Style / Abilities

Outside of an important competition, Hisa sticks to playing a rational style of mahjong, much like Nodoka. However, during key moments in such tournaments, she relies on bad waits because she feels that she always wins with them. She likewise believes that there is a meaning to each tile you grab, utilizing the flow of the game[1], and changes her hand accordingly. Although not as skilled as Jun Inoue at sensing flow, she still has a very good grasp on it, and picks her moments to declare riichi and win.

Hisa is very astute when it comes to noticing her opponents' (and even teammates') current psyche. She knows that she plays a very different style than most others, and capitalises on it. For example, in the Nagano finals she called an empty riichi, hoping to capitlise on her surreal wins from the first half to scare her opponents, which worked.

She is also skillful at intimidating her opponents into her traps, as well as collaborating with other players to help take down a more potent opponent in a match. Hisa also plays a solid defensive game, willing to back down from Hajime Kunihiro's riichi, even when Hajime was in last and Hisa first. Her signature move is when she draws her winning tile and then "shoots" the tile into the air and slams it down, revealing her winning hand.

Plot

Introduction Arc

Hisa

Hisa with the rest of mahjong members

Hisa is first introduced while Yuuki Kataoka, Nodoka Haramura, Kyoutarou Suga and Saki Miyanaga were into their third hanchan game. When it starts raining, she wakes realizing that she didn't bring her umbrella. As she introduces herself to Saki, she observes the game and notices that Saki has a good hand. She then walks to the computer to check the scores and notices that Saki has scored +/- 0 in all of her previous games. When Saki breaks even for the third time, Hisa quickly deduces that she was doing so deliberately and after she leaves, Hisa informs the others. After Nodoka chases after Saki, Hisa wonders if she would join the club so that they could aim for the nationals. The next day she discusses the news of yesterday with Mako Someya. Then finding Saki at the school library, she offers a book that she wanted in exchange for two matches. After gathering the players and setting special rules for the game, she bears witness to Saki's super-human luck of once again breaking even. She tries to explain that the object of the game is to win but to no avail. She then says to imagine her starting with 1,000 points while the others start with 33,000 points, to which Saki agrees that breaking even like that would be a victory. After the game ends Saki believes she has once again scored +/- zero. However, Hisa tells Saki she started with the same amount as everyone else and it's her victory, resulting in Nodoka running away and Saki chasing after her. As per Hisa's machinations, the next day Saki asks to join the mahjong club.

Training Camp Arc

She is seen preparing her club for the upcoming prefectural tournament and explaining Ryuumonbuchi's strength. She then asks Nodoka and Saki to help Mako by filling in for part-timers who called in sick at Mako's family mahjong cafe, stating that she's too busy and it would be a great experience for them. It was later revealed that she set them up; having them go against a friend of hers Yasuko Fujita, a professional mahjong player in hopes that she would completely humiliate them. Expecting this, Hisa stayed late at the club room when Saki and Nodoka burst in wanting a training camp to get better. She smiles then walks over to the eraseboard and flipped it to show the already planned training program.

The training camp kicks off by Hisa explaining the weak points of her first years and what they need to do to work on those areas. She is then seen commenting to Mako on how she had no expectations this year but she was given great candidates and hope they show her her dream of going to the nationals. We are then shown flashes of the training camp up until the day of the preliminaries.

Prefectural Tournament Arc

Hisa is with the rest of Kiyosumi entering the tournament hall and later wondering where the lost Saki is. When she returns and after a motivation speech by Hisa, she anounces the order in which she registered her team, with her being the liuetenant. She then tells them of why she chose that order as well as going over the rules before the matches begin. After breifly commenting on the others matches and instructing Nodoka and Saki to get something to eat, her first match begins. After Saki and Nodoka return, Mako tells them that Hisa won six times in a row with nothing but cheap hands. When Nodoka's turn arives it is revealed that Hisa, in order to minimalize her mistakes, ordered her to carry Etopen when she plays. During the match, she says that she was half joking but it really worked noting the results. After an overwhelming victory in the first round, Kiyosumi celebrates at lunch when Yasako Fujita appears to complement them. After a conversation with Fujita they leave for the second round, winning it to advance to the finals.

That night Hisa treats her club to ramen and tells them to prepare for the finals. The next day she is seen once again going over the rules before Yuuki Kataoka heads out to start off the finals. During the match Hisa comments throughout and is shown in Yuuki's flashback on the training camp. When Yuuki was pouting and thinking about giving up because of constanly being beaten, Hisa brings up how when she first entered Kiyosumi she was the lone representative of the schools mahjong club and didn't have the money to go to Kazekoshi. And if she would have given up then she wouldn't be in the position she was in now, which motivated Yuuki, however this was not enough for her to attain victory. When Yuuki comes back after her defeat, Hisa suggests that Nodoka and Saki get some rest before there matches stating that it would be bad to see them play a weak game because of drowsiness. After the two leave she comforts a crying Yuuki and when Mako's turn comes up explains to Yuuki, Mako's unique playing style. When Mako gets defeated and returns she tells them that she will regain those lost points and notices the looks of despair from her underclassmen.

Saki "Shoot the Tile"00:12

Saki "Shoot the Tile"

When she leaves for her match, Mihoko Fukuji notices that she is the same person (Hisa Ueno) that gave her such a hard time during a match in middle school. As she starts off, she is nervous but quickly gets over it utilizing her bad waits to confuse everyone and take advantage of Kazekoshi's Seika Bundou's mistakes and left Hajime Kunihiro wondering if she is close to Koromo in strength.

After gaining two more victories handily, Kiyosumi took the lead in the finals before intermission. During this time she teases Tsuruga's Satomi Kanbara and when Mihoko arrives to give Bundou some advice, Hisa knows that she has seen her somewhere before but can't place her. The anime extends this with a flashback showing Mihoko and Hisa during the national middle school tournament. In this Mihoko is having a tough time with her and forgets to keep her right eye closed. She then remarks on how pretty her eyes are among other things but did not return to the match, resulting in her getting disqualified.

When intermission ends, she noted that it became a lot harder to win because everyone is protecting their points better. After Ryuumonbuchi's Hajime declares a dealer's riichi, Hisa calls an empty riichi for intimidation which was very successful. As the round ended in a draw Hajime wondered if she was an idiot or a genius but regardless she was interesting. With the lieutenant battle over Kiyosumi was still leading and when she passes by Nodoka, she says that she's tired and the rest is up to the freshmen.

She is then seen commenting about Nodoka's match and explaining Nodoka's transformation into Nodochii. She was one of the few other than Tsuruga who noticed that Momoko Touyoko must be doing something strange in the match. When the captains battle begins, Hisa once again comments throughout the match about Saki and Koromo as well as the point spread. When Saki emerged victorious, Hisa with the rest of Kiyosumi congradulates her on her win and celebrate winning the prefectural tournament.

Individual Tournament *Anime Only Arc*

Before the start of the tournament, Hisa has her club members gather and bring swimsuits with them. When they are together she reveals that they're heading to Sports Land for "special training at the pool" and that its a sort of reward. By the pool side Hisa tells Mako that she's glad that everyone's enjoying themselves before questioning what Mako was doing. Later she is stopped by staff from bringing a mahjong table near the pool area. When relaxing, Mako expresses her amazement that they're going to the nationals and Hisa expresses her confidence on the matter.

Hisa getting srs
At the tournament hall, she is among the rest of the members of Kiyosumi giving another motivational speech before the start of the tournament and stating that only the top 20 will move on to the next round. As the tournament kicks off all of Kiyosumi dominate the competition. During the last round of the day, Hisa was set to face off against Mihoko Fukuji. During the match she was winning thoroughly until Mihoko opened her right eye to make a comeback victory. However when she did this, Hisa finally remembers Mihoko from so long ago and wonders how she could forget such pretty eyes. After the match she confronts Mihoko about their previous match and afterwards says they'll see each other again because there's still one more day.

On the start of the second day, Hisa is once again seen conversing with the other members before the matches. At lunch time she overheard that Saki was not participating seriously because she wanted Hisa to move on to the nationals in her last year, but was convinced to play serious thanks to Nodoka. Having heard this she decides to show them what its like when she is serious.

As luck would have it in the 9th match of the day Hisa and Saki were placed in the same room. Throughout the match Saki was contained thanks to a strategy set by Hisa that was working well until Tsuruga's Momoko broke away from the plan causing Saki to emerge the winner. In the final match she is once again pitted against Mihoko (who is in 1st) as well as Ryuumonbuchi's Touka Ryuumonbuchi (4th) and Tsuruga's Yumi Kajiki (6th). With Mihoko leading a close match throughout, on the final hand Hisa hit a tsumo and made a comeback victory. However the win wasn't enough to push her to the top 3 and into the nationals, which afterward she congradulated Mihoko on winning the tournament.

After the tournament Hisa sent out invitations to Tsuruga, Kazekoshi, and Ryuumonbuchi for a combined training camp. We next see her being informed about Yuuki failing but saying that Saki and Nokoka will take care of it. Hisa was however worring about not hearing from Kazekoshi as the other had already responded. The next day she bans the first years from coming to the club room until the make-ups were over. When asked about this, Hisa states that if Yuuki is in the club all she would want to do is play and that the others could use a break as well. She also reveals that she sent Kyo to do the shopping for the camp. She is then seen wondering about Yuuki's test in the student congress room, when Mihoko visits her personally to inform Hisa that Kazekoshi would be attending the camp. After a brief conversation about how lucky they are to have good underclassmen, Hisa invites Mihoko to watch the fireworks being displayed that night at a festival. They are then shown later that night on the mahjong club's roof viewing the fireworks side by side.

Combined Training Camp Arc

Hisa & Tsuruga v08c063p043

A few weeks after the tournament, Yasuko Fujita sets up a combined training camp hosted by Hisa and Kiyosumi. When all the schools arive, Hisa thanks them for participating and decides to give them free time for the rest of the day. Hisa is later seen relaxing in her room and talking with Mako who had just been defeated by Kaori Senoo again. When Fujita joins in on the training camp she takes Yumi Kajiki along to play against Hisa and Mako. After the match she wishes to battle against Hisa once more. The next day, she was watching a match when Mihoko brings in some snacks, to which Hisa was the first to grab. She then complements Mihoko which causes her to blush. She then overhears that there's a fearsome table (Koromo Amae, Fujita, and Saki) looking for one more player. Hisa quickly volunteers but Touka rushes to join the table instead.

Later in the day, Nodoka and Yuuki's underclassmen Maho Yumeno and Hiroko Murohashi arrive at the camp and Hisa insists on a match between them and Nodoka and Saki. During their matches it was revealed that they were invited by her to make Mako stronger against beginners and to scare Saki to prepare for the nationals. She then wonders how to prepare Yuuki and Nodoka but in the meantime decides to make herself stronger. Hisa then gathers Koromo, Yumi, and Mihoko to play against. The match was briefly shown but no winner was announced. Early the next morning Tsuruga is getting ready to head home and Hisa stops Yumi to thank her for participating. Yumi tells her that she'll be rooting for them to win, then Mihoko enters and both see Tsuruga off. She is later seen doing student congress work until the tournament.

National Tournament Arc

In August Kiyosumi arrives at their hotel in Tokyo for the nationals. There Hisa tells them to do what they want until tomorrow, saying they must get accustom to the place because the finals are along ways off. The following morning Kiyosumi wakes early and heads for the tournament draw. When it starts she is chosen to be the representative and nervously walks onstage and draws the #33 card which was the same block as the fifth seeded school Himematsu and third seeded Eisui Girls High.

When they get back to the hotel, Hisa thanks her club for going to the draw and explains that they have free time to relax until day three. She was shown during this time period going shopping with Mihoko holding the same bag together. On the day of their match she waves goodbye to Mihoko and heads toward the tournament hall. There they are greeted by Tsuruga and Ryuumonbuchi as well as getting a call from the student congress vice-president. Thinking he sent her work to do she opens the folder he sent her. When she hooks it up to a television, Kiyosumi finds that he in fact sent her a video with many supporters cheering for them causing her to reminisce about the past and want to do her best. Kiyosumi's first match was only briefly seen on the monitors in other schools rooms, however it was shown that it was Kiyosumi's win thanks to Hisa winning six times as the dealer and finishing with a direct hit to end the match without the vice-captain having to play.

Hisa is then shown along with everyone else (minus Saki) on the 5th day of the tournament watching the other matches on tv. On the day of their match before Yuuki goes out, she tells her to do exactly as they practiced. After her match Yuuki was feeling down but Hisa tries to encourage her. When it was Mako's turn, she was seen commenting on the match and we get a flashback of Mako explaining her abilities to Hisa.When it was her turn Hisa leaves early saying that she is so excited that she couldn't wait. As she enters the playing area she notices how much bigger the place is than the other rounds. She then realizes that she had been standing there along time when the other competitors come and also realizes that she is anxious but doesn't know why. During the start of her match, she is informed by Hiroe Atago that she can see her tile and Hisa, embarrassed, puts it back saying she hasn't done that since elementary school. She then continues to watch Hiroe play and tries to out maneuver her but is instead tricked into playing into Hiroe's hand.

SakiZenkokuHen-Episode6

Hisa laments how she hasn't won any points and instead put Kiyosumi last; while at first she wants to attribute this to her regular bad luck, she then says that this is the interhigh: her opponents are just that good. While this is happening, she plays into Hiroe's dealer haneman, dropping Kiyosumi's points even further. Hiroe comments it's kind of boring playing with such a bad player. Hisa begins to panic, thinking she's going to let everyone down, that this is her last interhigh, and that this game isn't fun at all. She then recalls Hiroe calling her boring and realizes that if she doesn't play this match for herself and enjoy it, nothing will come of it. Finally with her confidence back she starts playing like her old self and goes with her bad waits quickly winning back some of her points. With her momentum building, Kurumi Kakura plays into her opponents hand to stop Hisa and end the first half.

During intermission she stays in her seat along with Haru Takimi. Hisa then notices that Haru is eating something but can't figure out why and then is suddenly offered some by Haru. When Hisa accepts and says they're good, Haru smiles at her, saying that's her pride and joy. She is later seen with a cold compress on her head waiting for the others to return. When they finally do they prepare for the second half.

The second half much like the end of the first has Hisa gaining momentum and Kurumi playing into Haru's hand to stop her. After Kurumi wins, Hisa notes that she doesn't declare riichi and cannot tell if she's in tempai or not. But also saying that is not as bad as playing against Momo and that she is probably the most aware of her from the occult stand-point. When Hiroe wins again and insults her, Hisa says that she has amazing confidence and the skills to back it up and that she hasn't been this excited in ages and thanks her opponents and teammates. With one last big win Hisa manages to comeback into second place before the match ends.

After the match she wishes she felt like she did from the start but doesn't regret it and notices that the others are sticking around, then converses with Hiroe. When Nodoka arrives they greet each other before Nodoka hugs Hisa in fright thanks to Hatsumi Usuzumi arriving with her mask. She then gently scolds Nodoka before watching etopen get sent flying by Kinue Atago. Before leaving Hisa appologizes to Nodoka for losing so many points but Nodoka doesn't mind. She then appears in a flashback of Nodoka's. Here she subtlety warns Nodoka about Hatsumi's playing style. She is again shown before Saki's match reminding her that this is her first match in the nationals.

After the captains match, she is with the rest of the team welcoming Saki back. She then tells her that that was quite a way to win a match and hands Saki a wet towel. Saki then apologizes for the way she played and says that if she has to fight that Himematsu girl again, she might not win. Hisa then notes that she didn't even take off her shoes and that she can still improve, however she says that this could be troublesome.

Final Eight Arc

After Nodoka and Yuuki awake, she along with Mako and Mihoko greet them. When she comments on the match, Nodoka recognizes one of her friends. Hisa then asks her why she didn't notice before and then gives them permission to head to the playing hall. Hisa wonders if the first years made it to the arena by now and later reminds herself that if they keep winning they'll have to face Teru Miyanaga, asking herself what can they do to stop her.Before the start of the semi-finals, Hisa gathers Kiyosumi and heads toward the tournament hall. However before leaving she recieves a lunch from Mihoko and tells her they'll return. Later whle in the waiting room she tells Yuuki to go get them before the girl leaves for her match. She is later seen watching her match. It was implied that the reason Yuuki hid her new ability was because Hisa told her to save it for the semi-finals.

Upon Yuuki's return, Hisa thanks her for trusting her but Yuuki tells her that her word is final and that she will always do as she says. When she saw Mako deal into a hand, she noted that Mako would never drop the tile she did normally and is convinced she is playing blind. She is present to welcome Mako back to the team room and tells her that she doesn't intend to play the way she did in the second round. She then suggests that they eat their lunches. Hisa then pulls out lunch boxes that Mihoko prepared and helps herself.

While getting ready, Hisa spins around and asks Saki how she looks. Saki replies that she looks cute and Hisa repeats this before doing another spin and leaving. She then meets Hiroe and the girl asks if she is going to play like a coward again. Hisa says that she isn't sure before they are interrupted by the arrival of Choe Myeonghwa.

The lieutenant match begins with Hisa as the first dealer. She wonders if like Yuuki she'll get a really good hand, unfortunately, her hand is not like Yuuki's starting hands. After Hisa watches Yuan Iwadate play into Choe's and Hiroe's hand, she becomes painfully aware that she'll not only have to protect Usuzan's points (as Kiyosumi is in 3rd, if Usuzan drops out, so does Kiyosumi), but she'll have to battle Himematsu's Ace and the Wind Goddess at the same time. She then notices Yuan giving her a look and realizes that she intends to use her. After a few more hands like this, Hisa begins to smile and says that the girl has completely misread her. She then proceeds to steal Choe's winning tile and uses it to win herself. She then wins off of Yuan and says that when Kiyosumi reaches second place, Usuzan can go under for all she cares.

Hisa's problem

Hisa then thinks back and says that during the second round Saki had pointed out her appearance wasn't very neat and that she had her check her appearance before the match today. She then gets a wide smile on her face when Saki calls her cute. At the end of the first half, Hisa begins to think back on all of her friends through out the years and opens her eyes before the start of the second half.

She loses her first hand out of the gate and Hiroe says that she shouldn't try to be too fancy. Hisa proceeds to win her a mangan off of Yuan; the other players question Hisa's choice of winning off of Yuan but continue anyways. Choe then begins to sing and wins, but Hisa says that now she can finally do her thing. In the next hand, she says that she needs to go for bigger hands now that the game is coming to a close and that the odds are against her but she'll wait it out.

When Hisa feeds Hiroe a potential dealer mangan, Choe decides to play defensively; Hisa anticipates this to get a haneman off of Choe, who remarks that she shouldn't have underestimated the interhigh's high schoolers. In the first round of the south, she says that Choe wouldn't be helping her out anymore and gets a south wind tile. She wonders what wind tiles Choe has in her hand and declares riichi on a single wait for the south wind tile. Hisa then asks herself how many south winds Choe has and wonders if she has what it takes to face world ranked players. She then wins on a haneman and says that it feels good to pull off a win like that in an offical game.

While watching Usuzan not declare riichi during the vice captain match, she guesses that it was because they were too close to going bust. When Megan Davin put her tiles face down, Hisa explains that it is okay but recommend not to do so because of the audience. She then notes that depending on the round, the players tiles will be displayed in order on the screen anyhow. When Nodoka comes back and apologizes, Hisa tells her that its a good thing because Usuzan is more difficult to bust and they are closer to the second place Himematsu than they were before. After Saki leaves, Nodoka then asks if it's okay to use the left hand. Hisa then explains that in the past it was considered bad manners but nowadays its not a problem. She then looks at Nodoka and thinks.

When Kyouko Suehara calls a pon to thwart Saki, she wonders if the girl has figured out the timing. She then thinks that if they're going to the finals that she'll have Mihoko check it carefully. Hisa appears in a flashback of Saki's during the second half of her match. Here she tries to get Saki to enjoy online mahjong as something different whether she wins or loses. As Saki finally starts winning hands, Hisa explains what is going on and notices that Nelly Virsaladze is having terrible luck. She then says the way Nelly is playing bothers her.

Back in the waiting room, Saki says that getting to the finals feels like a stroke of luck. Mako then says that may be how it looks but to think about all they had to go through to get to that point. Hisa agrees with Mako and says all the points they gathered had some effect on the way things turned out. She then tells Saki that if she has any regrets about the game, she can rectify them in the finals.

National Championship Arc

At night, Hisa gathers her team to talk about the finals. When she mentions Achiga she is interrupted by Mihoko. Mihoko apologizes and says that she has played them before but Hisa tells her that there is nothing to apologize for. She then asks who won and Miharu Yoshitome says they were overpowered. Later Hisa looks over video and spots Saki's tell. She then says that she thought about having Mihoko do it but would've felt bad about asking her. Mihoko then tells her that if Hisa asked her, she would've done it.

She then feels conflicted about continuing the meeting or letting the others rest before the match. She also mentions how the 5th place match should have a whole day dedicated to it and not just a few hanchan. When Yuuki and Saki get back from the bath, Hisa tells Yuuki not to play mahjong until the match tomorrow. During the meeting, Hisa brings up Teru and says even Saki doesn't know her weaknesses. A phone call for Nodoka interrupts and she suggest she take it. Outside in the halls she tells Nodoka to go and visit her family.

Hisa wakes Saki and heads toward the arena with the others. Saki then says she is nervous and needs to use the toilet, so Hisa asks Nodoka to go with her. Saki instead tells them she doesn't need anyone to go with her.

Quotes

  • " Your eye...your right eye is...pretty. Did you know? Blue sapphires and red rubies are made from the same element."
  • "After all, humans are at their weakest in new situations."
  • "My friends from the prefecturals, the people who are cheering us on, my teammates.... I know they're precious to me but right here and now I am the star! If I don't enjoy this match, nothing will come of it."

Trivia

  • Hisa made it to the semi-finals of the Saimoe 2012 tournament.
  • Hisa, in the first turn of her matches, has a habit of comparing herself and her hands to how her teammates would play.
    • In the Prefectural finals, she wonders what Nodoka would do with her 5-shanten hand
    • In the National semifinals, she wonders if she'll start off with a good hand like Yuuki does, as Hisa was the first dealer.

References

  1. In Saki manga, volume 3, hand 20, Hisa points to herself after talking about those who believe there is meaning to each tile you pluck. In the same bubble, Hisa speaks about flow, and Jun is shown along with the silhouette of Nelly.

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