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Issei Matsukawa (Japanese: 松川 (まつかわ) 一静 (いっせい) Matsukawa Issei) is a third-year student from Aoba Johsai High and plays as one of the middle blockers for the boys' volleyball team.

As of 2021, Matsukawa works at a funeral company in Miyagi.

Appearance

Matsukawa is shown to have short, messy black hair and thick eyebrows. He has small, dark pupils and hooded eyelids. His mouth is usually shown as having his upper lip more pronounced than most characters. He is the tallest of the third-year volleyball players at Seijoh, and has a good height for volleyball.

Post-timeskip, his appearance has changed very little. His hair is shown to be slightly longer.

Personality

Although he can seem intimidating because of his height and blocking ability, he is shown to be actually quite easy-going and good-natured; enjoying a good joke and poking fun at his friends. He is also shown to have an incredibly high game sense when it comes to narrowing Hinata's cross court shots to line shots during a match against Karasuno.

Background

Plot

Karasuno High Team Formation Arc

Shortly before the match, Matsukawa has a short conversation with Yahaba and Iwaizumi about their confusion over why Kageyama decided to attend Karasuno[1]. During the second set, Matsukawa finds himself unable to block Tsukishima as Kageyama sets to him.

Interhigh Arc

Matsukawa serves after Oikawa had scored thanks to his surprise dump. Matsukawa serves again, but Nishinoya is able to receive it. Not long after Matsukawa, Hanamaki, and Oikawa are all rotated in the front row, which would pressure Kageyama and roll with Oikawa’s plan. Later on, Kunimi bumps perfectly to where Oikawa is standing, and he sets to Matsukawa, and they go for a quick set, which surprises the spectators. However, Hinata is able to block him.

Kageyama would be soon benched by Sugawara, and forgetting this, Matsukawa and Iwaizumi would be confused as to why Sugawara wasn’t saying either ‘bring’ or ‘give’ since it would indicate which quick attack they would use, and Oikawa yells at his teammates that it was because Sugawara was setting, not Kageyama. During the time-out to conclude the first set, Matsukawa agrees with Iwaizumi admitting that he initially thought that Karasuno’s defense was only made up of Hinata and Kageyama and after Oikawa insults him, Matsukawa and dodges Iwaizumi’s headbutt.

When the rally hits the 20s, Tsukishima is subbed in, and Matsukawa notices that whenever he gets rotated in, Karasuno stopped attacking from the center. However, he is surprised with a tip from Tsukishima when attempting to block him. During the time-out for the third set, Iwaizumi figures that Karasuno probably changed their signals for the quick set, and Matsukawa speculates that if Hinata looks at the ball for more than a beat, he’s going for a normal quick, but if he starts running, he’s going for the faster one. Hinata is about to pull his quick attack, and together, Iwaizumi and Matsukawa try to stop him but fail since he is instead used as a decoy[2].

Spring High Preliminary Arc

Group s2-e14-1.png

Despite the fact that most third-years retire after the Interhigh Tournament, Matsukawa and the other third-years decided not to retire as they wished to get revenge on Shiratorizawa and make it to the Spring Tournament. Along with Hanamaki and Iwaizumi, Matsukawa becomes angry when Kyōtani asks why the third-years are still part of the volleyball club despite getting defeated by Shiratorizawa during the previous tournament.

Aoba Johsai vs Date Tech

After Iwaizumi scores Aoba Johsai’s winning point, Matsukawa congratulates his teammate and ruffles his hair.

Aoba Johsai vs Karasuno

As the match begins, Matsukawa and the other third-years cut in Oikawa’s faith speech in which they state they give him their complete trust but soon each one demands a dish of ramen in case Oikawa fails his first serve. When Hinata gets past Watari, Matsukawa twitches in irritation. However, when Hanamaki and Kindaichi leave the court to prepare for the next rally, he tells them to ignore cross shots and instead prepare for line shots.

Matsukawa Hinata 1 s2 e20.png

When he jumps up to block, he admits to himself that Hinata is a pain to block one-on-one but highly discourages him to go for a cross-shot with a hard stare. After this, he tells his team that if they could simply point Hinata’s shots in the direction that would benefit them, they wouldn’t be difficult to dig.

During the second rally, Oikawa would set more often to Kyōtani, and Karasuno believes that this is to throw them off with another player later. This is referenced back to when Matsukawa seems to creep behind Kyōtani to use him as a decoy but ultimately Oikawa sets to Kyōtani. After Kyōtani fails to dig Yamaguchi’s jump floater, Hanamaki learns from his teammate’s mistake and instead goes for an overhand pass. After Yamaguchi manages a streak of multiple aces in a row, Hanamaki admits that it was impossible to have gotten the latest one. Shortly after, as Oikawa and Matsukawa manage to score, Takeda remark how Aoba Johsai caught up to Karasuno in no time.

After Aoba Johsai’s loss, Iwaizumi blames himself for not making his final spike count but after a slap in the back by each of the third-years, including Matsukawa, he gets back to his senses. Nevertheless, that evening, Iwaizumi has a competition with Oikawa to determine who had the more right to be upset over their loss, but Hanamaki and Matsukawa don’t react to it much. Shortly after, the club’s third-years all play together one last time as teammates. As they are about to wrap things up, Hanamaki senses that Oikawa is about to end off with a happy message to conclude their volleyball career and they all break into tears.

Tokyo National Arc

Matsukawa makes an appearance in the match between Karasuno and Inarizaki when Hinata admits that he despises Matsukawa's blocks more than any other he has faced so far. Matsukawa is then seen sneezing on a train[3].

Final Arc

Matsukawa's final appearance of the series is when he is watching the match between Japan and Argentina. He is currently working at a funeral home in Miyagi[4].

Statistics

High School Statistics
Power
 
4/5
Jumping
 
2/5
Stamina
 
4/5
Game Sense
 
3/5
Technique
 
3/5
Speed
 
3/5

He seems to be overall good at spiking, receiving, and blocking.

Matsukawa's best known skill is his blocking. Thanks to his tall height, he is one of Seijoh's best blockers. Combined with his analytical thinking, Matsukawa is able to figure out how to best block his opponents or change the direction of their spikes in order to allow his team the best chance to receive. Because of the pressure he can apply onto opposing spikers, he is stated to be the one-on-one blocker that Hinata dislikes most[3].

Jumping Reach: 331 cm

Relationships

Tōru Oikawa

Like the other Aoba Johsai third-years, he tends to poke fun at Oikawa when he says or does something silly or out of character. However, he does have a deep respect for his captain and has complete trust in his talent as a setter. He continues to support Oikawa all the way to the Olympic match between Japan and Argentina.

Takahiro Hanamaki

The two seem to be close friends, even among the four tight-knit third-years of Seijoh. They often join in or enjoy spectating Oikawa's mocking antics towards Iwaizumi, or tease Oikawa as well. Though both are of few words, they appear to be close with the other members of their team.

Trivia

  • Favorite Food: Cheese-filled hamburger steak.
  • Current Concern: He's been told that his school uniform doesn't suit him.
  • He shares his birthday with Yahaba (March 1st).
  • It is stated in the Haikyuu Guidebook that he has one younger sister and one younger brother.
  • In the manga he doesn't wear kneepads. However, he does in the anime.
  • It's unknown if he and Hanamaki do this on purpose or it's a mistake done by Furudate, but the two characters are occasionally shown wearing each other's uniform (Chapter 49's cover page for example).
  • Matsukawa's blocks are Hinata's least favorite[3].
  • Matsukawa is the youngest third-year in the series.
  • He bears a close resemblance to Moniwa, former captain of Date Tech.
  • Nomenclature
    • Issei (一静) - Quiet one.
    • Matsukawa (松川) - Pine tree river.

Quotes

References

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