Taketora Yamamoto (Japanese:
Yamamoto has short, thick eyebrows and a mohawk that appears to be dyed blond, giving him an intimidating appearance (though he's more timid in the presence of girls). He has cat-like eyes, similar to most of the other Nekoma members.
Similar to Tanaka, he's loud, hot-headed, and easy to anger. He's very proud of his position as the ace, though he acknowledges his shortcomings when it comes to power and qualities other aces have. He has a strong mentality, albeit he's easily riled up, and knows when to gather his bearings, exemplified in the match against Nohebi. Despite his intimidating appearance, he's timid around girls and can't gather the strength to speak to them. Yamamoto also may be indifferent towards his studies as he's remarked that he knows some big vocabulary, but can't spell them.
He is currently a second year in Nekoma High School and plays on the boys' volleyball team as a wing spiker. He is the current ace.
When he first joined the team he and Kenma had clashing ideologies and was annoyed at the latter's skills despite being lazy and unenthusiastic, and even got into an argument where he caused Kenma to raise his voice and got physical with each other. The fight was broken up when Fukunaga splashed water on them to calm them down.
Despite this Yamamoto began noticing Kenma's desire to not lose, along with his strong game sense and was thankful that he was on the same team as him. Eventually, he told Kenma to call him "Tora" as a sign of friendship and the two have been getting along since.
Karasuno High Team Formation ArcEdit
Nekoma plays a practice match against Tsukinokizawa High before meeting Karasuno. It wins 2-0. Later that night, Yamamoto bets Inuoka and Shibayama a Häagen-Dazs that Karasuno doesn't have a female manager. He loudly exclaims that it'll be frustrating if they have one and Nekoma doesn't before yelling out the window, causing Kuroo to angrily scold him. He then asks Kenma what he thinks and is surprised when the usually indifferent Kenma answers that he's looking forward to the match.
Nekoma and Karasuno meet the next day. When Yamamoto sees Kenma talking with Hinata, he approaches them and asks intimidatingly what Hinata's doing with his setter. In response, Tanaka approaches him and asks a similar question. Suddenly, Yamamoto spots Kiyoko and runs off in shock.
Nekoma and Karasuno play evenly initially. When Yamamoto gets blocked the first time, he easily recovers his composure and shouts for another toss. As he slams it past Tanaka, he yells that even if his power is mediocre, he's still the ace. Tanaka returns with another spike past Yamamoto. For the majority of the match, the two play against each other. In the end, Nekoma wins all the matches.
Yamamoto tentatively approaches Tanaka afterwards and asks for Kiyoko's name. As Tanaka attacks him, Yamamoto reveals that he doesn't have the courage to talk to her anyway. Tanaka has a change of heart and answers his question and the two bond over their attraction to Kiyoko. As they realize that they're quite similar, they introduce themselves and become fast friends, later tearfully shaking hands goodbye.
Tokyo Expedition ArcEdit
Nekoma takes part in the training camp as per tradition. Yamamoto greets Karasuno when it arrives, only to fall over in shock because the number of female managers has increased.
During the BBQ at the end, Yamamoto bands together with Tanaka and Nishinoya to protect Kiyoko from any guys that take an interest in her. When Karasuno leaves, Yamamoto waves with a heavy blush on his face, watching Kiyoko and Yachi walk away.
Spring High Preliminary ArcEdit
Nekoma prepares to face off against Fukurōdani after making it to quarterfinals. In the lobby, Nohebi approaches the members and Yamamoto immediately jumps to him. Kuroo joins in and picks on Daishō.
As the match begins, Yaku teases Yamamoto about his sister's enthusiastic cheering. The members start warming up and Yamamoto yells at Kenma to be more energetic. Kenma replies that Lev's sister was staring at him, distracting Yamamoto and causing him to get hit by a volleyball and scolded by Coach Naoi.
Nekoma plays defensively in the beginning, but Fukurōdani has the advantage. Yamamoto gets a few strong spikes in. In the end, Fukurōdani wins and Nekoma has to play Nohebi to win its last chance for nationals.
The match begins and Yamamoto gets picked out by Nohebi, who scores with a feint and a spike right afterwards. However, Yamamoto calms himself down and reminds himself that his team is definitely going to go to nationals. Despite that, he gets riled up from their insults, especially when the referee starts showing clear bias for Nohebi.
Yamamoto positions himself for the next spike, only to get hit full-on in the head by Daishō's spike. However, he quickly realizes that Nohebi baited him to step into that position. As the game progresses, Taketora gets more flustered and makes more mistakes.
However, he calms down after Yaku gets subbed out, noting to himself that he doesn't have the luxury to be reckless at this point. As he thinks this, he goes for an attack from an awkward angle, slamming it past the blockers.
Nekoma wins the match 2-0 and the members celebrate with Yaku, who's returned.
Tokyo Nationals ArcEdit
Like the rest of his team, he is flexible and adept at receiving. Taketora can have incredible mental fortitude, as he was able to immensely concentrate during the Nohebi match and ignore the taunts he usually gets riled up to. That allowed him to concentrate enough to hit straight spikes properly. He also has good instincts as he was able to receive the ball at a sharp angle when it was about to drop on his side of the court. As a wing spiker, he is good at spiking and specializes in cross spikes. These qualities, and not intense power, are what made him the ace. Since the Spring High-Tokyo Representative Playoffs, he has learned to do a jump serve.
Jumping Reach: 322 cm
Yamamoto gets along very well with all of his teammates, especially with Inuoka and Shibayama, with whom he's made bets on Karasuno's manager. Though Yamamoto annoys Kuroo sometimes with his rambunctious behavior, Kuroo still treats him well. Yamamoto constantly tries to get Kenma to be more extroverted while Kenma is generally indifferent; Kenma also knows Yamamoto well and knows what type of things can specifically rile him up or distract him. He has a somewhat competitive relationship with Lev, who claims to be Nekoma's ace, something that doesn't sit well with Yamamoto. On the other hand, Lev finds Yamamoto to be scary sometimes. Yamamoto seems to have a one-sided rivalry with Fukunaga when he reveals during the match against Karasuno that he does not want to be out-done by his fellow teammate; though he does try to get Fukunaga to be more vocal.
Yamamoto and Kenma first met during their first-year in Nekoma at the volleyball club. At that time, Kenma was the weakest in the team and didn't like getting tired, while Yamamoto possessed greater physical strength. They are like opposite sides of the pole, with Yamamoto being passionate about improving more by thinking about abstract things like "willpower", and Kenma being more precise about perceptible things which aids him in improving, rather than just going all out. Even though they don't agree with things and would sometimes have arguments or fights, they acknowledge and respect each other's skill, and can coordinate well as a team. Because of this, Yamamoto tells Kenma to start calling him "Tora", which the latter refuses at first, but eventually does later on. Yamamoto can be protective of Kenma, as seen when he terrorizes Hinata for talking to Kenma when Karasuno and Nekoma first met.
Upon first meeting in their first year, Fukunaga seemed to unsettle Yamamoto as well as Kenma, not being talkative and making a pun off of Yamamoto's comment. Though their relationship is not strongly acknowledged in the series it can be said that they are somewhat close with Fukunaga's current concern being that Yamamoto tells him to talk more. Yamamoto seems to share a strong bond with the other second years as before their match with Karasuno at Nationals, he was teased by Fukunaga how he and Tanaka were related, to which Yamamoto stormed off saying that his hair was cooler than Tanaka's. He also claimed in the game at Nationals against Karasuno that he sees Fukunaga as his rival since Fukunaga is able to pull off amazing stunts effortlessly.
They are very close and Akane often comes to his matches to lead the cheering squad. She's modest about his abilities, but is still proud of them. He is shy of his sister's obsession with volleyball and appears to be embarrassed about her support during matches, but is still grateful.
They don't interact much during the practice match, but later becomes friends in the training camp. Yamamoto calls Nishinoya "Master" because the latter took a slap from Kiyoko. Along with Tanaka, they are Kiyoko's protection squad.
Like many others, he's attracted to her, but is too shy to actually talk with her. With Tanaka and Nishinoya, he "protects" her during the training camp.
- Favorite Food: Yakisoba bread
- Current Concern: he wants to know the best way to talk to girls.
- His birthday is on Japan's Cat Day.
- His star sign is Pisces.
- Yamamoto appears to have dyed his mohawk sometime in his first year after an altercation with Kenma.
- In Haikyuu's first popularity poll, Yamamoto tied with Kindaichi at 29th with 466 votes. He did not rank in the second poll.
- Taketora (猛虎) - Fierce Tiger
- Yamamoto (山本) - Natural Mountain
- "Hey, hey, hey. What business do you have with our setter?" (To Hinata, Season 1, Episode 12)
- "Even if my attack power could be called average, I am Nekoma's ace!" (Chapter 31)
- "If we stifle their setter, even Bokuto-kun in peak form will be incapacitated since he won't have anything of quality to hit, eh?" (To Kenma, Chapter 194)
- "I'm honestly terrified that Yaku-san isnt standing behind me right now. I really don't have the luxury of getting riled up at their trash talking." (In the match against Nohebi, Chapter 202)
- "Players who can't even defend properly doesn't deserve the title of ace." (To Lev, Chapter 203)
- "An unmotivated person like you has no right to talk about what willpower is!" (To Kenma, Chapter 266)
- "Practice like you play, and you will play like you practice is what people say, right? I don't know how many people out there can actually achieve that....you can't have good games all the time." (Chapter 332)