Japanese cruiser Sendai

Japanese cruiser Sendai

nihongo|"Sendai"|川内 軽巡洋艦|Sendai keijunyōkan was a "Sendai"-class light cruiser in the Imperial Japanese Navy. She was named after the Sendai River in southern Kyūshū.


"Sendai" was the lead ship of the three vessels completed in her class of light cruisers, and like other vessels of her class, she was intended for use as the flagship of a destroyer flotilla.

ervice career

Early career

"Sendai" was completed at the Mitsubishi Nagasaki shipyards on 29 April 1924. Immediately on completion, she was assigned to Yangtze River patrol in China. She played an important role in the Battle of Shanghai in the opening stages of the Second Sino-Japanese War, and later covered the landings of Japanese forces in southern China.

Invasions of Southeast Asia

On 20 November 1941, "Sendai" became flagship of DesRon 3 under Rear Admiral Shintaro Hashimoto.

At the time of the attack on Pearl Harbor, "Sendai" was engaged in escorting transports carrying Lieutenant General Tomoyuki Yamashita and the Japanese 25th Army to invade Malaya. At 23:45 on 7 December 1941, "Sendai" and her destroyer squadron ("Ayanami", "Isonami", "Shikinami", and "Uranami") commenced a bombardment of Kota Bharu, Malaya. They were attacked by seven RAAF Hudson bombers, which sank one of the transports and damaged two others.

On 9 December 1941, warship|Japanese submarine|I-65 reported sighting of Royal Navy Force Z (the Royal Navy battleship HMS|Prince of Wales|53, battlecruiser HMS|Repulse|1916 and supporting destroyers). The report was received by "Sendai", which relayed the message to Vice Admiral Jisaburō Ozawa aboard his flagship, "Chokai". However, the reception was poor and the message took another 90 minutes to decode. Moreover, "I-65s" report was incorrect about the heading of Force Z. The following day, Force Z was overwhelmed by torpedo bombers of the 22nd Air Flotilla from Indochina.

On 19 December 1941, off Kota Bahru in the South China Sea, Royal Netherlands Navy submarine "O-20" sighted Sendai escorting the second Malaya Convoy's 39 transports. At 1115, the "Sendai's" floatplane, a Kawanishi E7K2 "Alf", spotted and bombed the "O-20", which was also attacked by "Ayanami" and "Yugiri" with depth charges. That night "O-20" surfaced to recharge her batteries, and a flame from her engines' exhaust gave her away; she was sunk by "Uranami".

"Sendai" made three more troop convoy escort runs to Malay at the end of December 1941 and in January 1942. On the fourth run, 10 January 1942 USS|Seadragon|SS-194 spotted the convoy and fired two torpedoes at the last transport, but both missed. On the fifth run, on 26 January, "Sendai" and her convoy were attacked by the HMS|Thanet|1918 and HMAS|Vampire|D68 about convert|80|nmi|km|0 north of Singapore in the Battle off Endau. The torpedoes from the Allied vessels missed, and "Shirayuki" and "Sendai" returned fire with their convert|4|in|mm|0|sing=on guns. "Thanet" was sunk, while "Vampire" was undamaged and escaped to Singapore.

From February through March, "Sendai" was assigned to cover Japanese landings in Sumatra, and in sweeping the sea lanes and the Strait of Malacca for British and Dutch vessels escaping from Singapore. At the end of March, "Sendai" covered the landing of one battalion of the IJA's 18th Infantry Division at Port Blair, Andaman Islands. At the end of April, "Sendai" returned to Sasebo for repairs.

Battle of Midway

On 29 May 1942, "Sendai" departed with the Main Body of the Combined Fleet for Midway. The Main Body remained convert|600|nmi|km|-1 behind Vice Admiral Chuichi Nagumo's First Carrier Striking Force and thus did not engage American forces. "Sendai" returned to Kure on 14 June 1942 without having seen combat.

olomon Islands campaigns

On 15 July 1942 DesRon 3 was reassigned to the Southwest Force to cover operations in Burma and raids in the Indian Ocean, arriving at Mergui, Burma 31 July. However, with American landings on Guadalcanal, the planned Indian Ocean operations were cancelled and "Sendai" was sent to Makassar, Davao and Truk instead, to escort troop convoys to Rabaul, New Britain and Shortland, Bougainville. On 8 September, "Sendai" shelled Tulagi and on 12 September "Sendai" (with destroyers "Shikinami", "Fubuki" and "Suzukaze") bombarded Henderson Field, Guadalcanal. "Sendai" remained active in Solomon Island operations through November 1942, participating in both the First Naval Battle of Guadalcanal (where she remained as distant cover) and the Second Naval Battle of Guadalcanal (where it was attacked by the USS|Washington|BB-56's convert|16|in|mm|0|sing=on main guns, but she escaped undamaged).

On 25 February 1943 "Sendai" was reassigned to the Eighth Fleet at Rabaul under Vice Admiral Gunichi Mikawa and remained on patrol around Rabaul through April. Returning to Sasebo in May, "Sendai" was repaired and modified. Her No.5 convert|5.5|in|mm|0|sing=on gun mount was removed and two triple 25 mm AA gun mounts and Type 21 radar were installed. Repairs were completed 25 June 1943 and "Sendai" returned to Truk on 5 July. On 7 July Rear Admiral Baron Matsuji Ijuin assumed command of DesRon 3. During the next three months, "Sendai" operated out of Rabaul covering reinforcement convoys to Buin and Shortland.

On 18 July 1943 off Kolombangara the group was attacked by Guadalcanal-based Marine Grumman TBM Avenger torpedo-bombers, and two days later by North American B-25 Mitchell bombers but was not damaged; it also escaped damage after being bombed by a Consolidated B-24 Liberator on 1 November 1943.

The following day, 2 November 1943, at the Battle of Empress Augusta Bay, the Japanese fleet attempting to reinforce Bougainville was intercepted by Task Force 39 with the light cruisers USS|Cleveland|CL-55, USS|Columbia|CL-56, USS|Montpelier|CL-57 and USS|Denver|CL-58 and destroyers USS|Stanly|DD-478, USS|Charles Ausburne|DD-570, USS|Claxton|DD-571, USS|Dyson|DD-572, USS|Converse|DD-509, USS|Foote|DD-511, USS|Spence|DD-512 and USS|Thatcher|DD-514. The Japanese force included "Myoko" and "Haguro", "Sendai" and "Agano" with destroyers "Shigure", "Samidare" and "Shiratsuyu", "Naganami", "Wakatsuki" and the "Hatsukaze" and "Amagiri", "Yunagi", "Uzuki" and "Fuzuki".

"Shigure" spotted the American destroyers at convert|7500|yd|m|-2, turned hard starboard and launched eight torpedoes. "Sendai" also turned hard starboard, but bore down on "Shigure", barely avoiding a collision. All four Allied cruisers took "Sendai" under radar directed 6-inch fire. They hit her with their first salvo and more thereafter, setting her afire. "Sendai" sank the following morning at coord|06|10|S|154|20|E. Captain Shoji and 184 crewmen went down with the ship, but 236 other crewmen were rescued by destroyers.

On 3 November 1943, Admiral Ijuin and 75 more survivors from "Sendai" were rescued by the Japanese submarine warship|Japanese submarine|RO-104.

"Sendai" was removed from the Navy List on 5 January 1944.

List of Captains

Chief Equipping Officer - Capt. Kizo Isumi - 1 December 1923 - 29 April 1924

Capt. Kizo Isumi - 29 April 1924 - 1 December 1924

Capt. Kiyohiro Ijichi - 1 December 1924 - 2 July 1925

Capt. Shikai Nakahara - 2 July 1925 - 1 November 1926

Capt. Tatsuo Sagara - 1 November 1926 - 21 December 1927

Capt. Jiro Ban - 21 December 1927 - 15 March 1928

Capt. Kasumi Masaki - 15 March 1928 - 10 December 1928

Capt. Senzo Wada - 10 December 1928 - 1 May 1929

Capt. Noboru Osamu - 1 May 1929 - 30 November 1929

Capt. Taichi Miki - 30 November 1929 - 1 December 1930

Capt. Kaneji Kishimoto - 1 December 1930 - 14 September 1931

Capt. Terumichi Goto - 14 September 1931 - 1 December 1932

Capt. Takeo Takasaki - 1 December 1932 - 15 November 1933

Capt. Kozo Suzukida - 15 November 1933 - 4 July 1934

Capt. Tsunemitsu Yoshida - 4 July 1934 - 1 November 1934

Capt. Kazuo Nakamura - 1 November 1934 - 15 November 1935

Capt. Torahiko Nakajima - 15 November 1935 - 1 December 1936

Capt. Masao Yamamoto - 1 December 1936 - 1 December 1937

Capt. Susumu Kimura - 1 December 1937 - 15 December 1938

Capt. Shunji Izaki - 15 December 1938 - 15 November 1939

Capt. Sojiro Hisamune - 15 November 1939 - 15 July 1940

Capt. Toshio Shimazaki - 15 July 1940 - 25 April 1942

Capt. Nobue Morishita - 25 April 1942 - 20 May 1943

Capt. / RADM* Kiichiro Shoji - 20 May 1943 - 2 November 1943 (KIA)



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External links

*cite web
last = Parshall
first = Jon
coauthors = Bob Hackett, Sander Kingsepp, & Allyn Nevitt
year =
url = http://www.combinedfleet.com/nagara_c.htm CombinedFleet.com: "Nagara" class
title = Imperial Japanese Navy Page (Combinedfleet.com)
work =
accessdate = 2006-06-14
tabular record: [http://www.combinedfleet.com/sendai_t.htm CombinedFleet.com: "Sendai" history]


ee also

*List of World War II ships

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