Is it healthy to be obsessed with a fighting champion? Sakura doesn't seem to question it, following her idol Ryu at his every whim, learning his style, fighting techniques, and success. The coy Japanese schoolgirl wishes to be trained by the master she adores, but until then, taking notes on his moves and copying his technique is her work.
Still, some may (plausibly) find it strange for a sixteen-year-old student to be interested in street fighting. Her art is for fun, but also for self-defense and appreciation; ever since her run-in with a college gang, Sakura has vowed to protect herself with her training. Ryu is key to her inspiration.
As Sakura translated is the name for the Cherry Blossom Tree, so are her moves a variation on the theme. She shares the Hadouken fireball with Ryu, also holding a running Dragon Punch (Shououken) and Shunpuu Kyaku, a variation of the hurricane kick. The super move First of Spring (Haru Ichiban) is one of the best in Street Fighter Alpha 2: a grounded hurricane kick that ends with a straight, horizontal kick sending her opponent across the fighting ground.
At the conclusion of her quest in searching for Ryu, Sakura finally has a chance to spar with her hero. With disappointment Ryu confesses that he cannot train her, as his path contains much for himself to learn. Yet hardly does that put Sakura off in her training...
"Do you have time for another beating before my next class?"
Selected game appearances
- Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo (1996)
- Marvel Super Heroes vs. Street Fighter (1997)
- Capcom vs. SNK: Millennium Fight 2000 (2000)
- Capcom vs. SNK 2: Mark of the Millennium 2001 (2001)
- Street Fighter IV (2009)
- Super Street Fighter IV (2010)