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If you were looking for the other character whose Japanese name is Sanpei, see Steveland.
サンペイ Sanpei
Gender Male
Hometown Unknown
Region Kalos
Relatives Ippei and Nihei (brothers)
Trainer class Trainer
Anime debut A Rush of Ninja Wisdom!
English voice actor Chris Patton
Japanese voice actor Yūko Sanpei

Sanpei (Japanese: サンペイ Sanpei) is a recurring character in the Pokémon anime who first appeared in A Rush of Ninja Wisdom. He is a ninja hailing from a ninja village. He has two older brothers. His eldest, Ippei, who is the strongest of the ninja village, and his second brother Nihei, who is the second strongest of the ninja village.


As Ash was training with Froakie, their training was criticized by Sanpei, who had concealed himself behind a veil on a tree. Sanpei revealed himself, but quickly disappeared with his "leaf concealment" technique. Startled, Ash and Froakie tried to look for Sanpei but weren't able to spot him anywhere, until they noticed a Frogadier in a tree. Sanpei then joined with the Frogadier and he introduced himself to the group. Ash quickly challenged Sanpei to a battle with Froakie against Frogadier, which Sanpei accepted as he was also looking for a battle opponent.

Although Froakie tried many attacks, Frogadier proved to be too quick. As Froakie tried Water Pulse, Frogadier disappeared in a flash. Concentrating on finding Frogadier's current location, Froakie thought it had found it, only to find out it was a decoy. The real Frogadier appeared out of a nearby pond and the fight went on with both using Water Pulse. Sanpei then ordered Frogadier to use Quick Attack, which was too fast for Froakie to keep up with. Ultimately Frogadier landed the hit and Froakie was defeated.

Sanpei helped Froakie recover by giving it medicine. As Sanpei was about to leave, Ash asked him to help Froakie learn Quick Attack. Sanpei accepted Ash's request, but assured him his teachings are strict. Sanpei had Froakie go through various stages of training, such as jumping from spot to spot and running across the surface of the water. After this, the group and Sanpei decided to have a meal together. Sanpei then told Ash more about his background.

As they continued their training, Team Rocket suddenly appeared in a giant ninja robot. They managed to grab Frogadier and Pikachu. As Froakie now tried to battle Team Rocket on its own, the training with Sanpei pulled off and Froakie managed to execute Double Team. With a Water Pulse, it managed to free Frogadier and Pikachu. Ash and Sanpei then blasted off Team Rocket together with a double Water Pulse from Froakie and Frogadier. Now showing more respect for Ash than when they met, Sanpei said his farewells to Ash and the group as he went on his way.

He reappeared in A Stealthy Challenge!, revealing his Frogadier had evolved into a Greninja. Ash found both Sanpei and Greninja unconscious and injured in a river. Sanpei told him he was given a mission by his mentor Saizo to deliver a secret scroll to a mansion by sunset, but during his quest he and Greninja got attacked by a masked ninja with a Barbaracle who wanted to steal his scroll.

Suddenly the masked ninja appeared and challenged Sanpei for the scroll again. Ash tried to fend the Barbaracle off with Pikachu and Froakie, but Sanpei, knowing they wouldn't be able to defeat the masked ninja, used his ninja techniques to escape with Ash and his friends. Continuing their journey to the mansion, the group entered a cave full of Golbat and got separated leaving Sanpei with only Ash. At that moment, the masked ninja appeared once again to battle Sanpei for the scroll.

Suddenly, Team Rocket appeared and tried to steal Pikachu, but Sanpei and Ash, with unexpected help from the masked ninja, managed to blast them off. Sanpei questioned the ninja why he helped them, but he didn't answer and wanted to continue their battle. They did, with Ash teaming up with Sanpei. Barbaracle eventually managed to hit Pikachu, Greninja and Froakie with Mud-Slap blinding the former two in the process and sending the latter flying into a rock. Just as Barbaracle wanted to finish Froakie off, it evolved into a Frogadier and managed to weaken Barbaracle. The ninja then decided to let Sanpei continue to the mansion and left.

At the mansion Sanpei and Ash met up with Serena, Clemont and Bonnie again and encountered the ninja once more. However, the ninja was revealed to be Sanpei's mentor Saizo, who claimed he was only testing Sanpei. Following this revelation, Ash challenged Sanpei and Greninja with his newly evolved Frogadier, although the outcome of the battle remains unknown.

He is set to reappear in XY098 and XY099.


Sanpei's Greninja

Sanpei's Greninja
Frogadier → Greninja
Greninja is Sanpei's only known Pokémon. It was first seen as a Frogadier sitting on a branch, which made Ash decided to look for its Trainer. After meeting Sanpei, Ash used his Froakie to battle Frogadier, but was defeated because Frogadier was too fast to keep up with. Frogadier aided Froakie in its training to learn Quick Attack. Frogadier showed its various techniques, such as jumping quickly from spot to spot and quickly running across the surface of the water. Eventually Team Rocket attacked with a giant ninja robot, which Frogadier and Froakie teamed up to defeat with a double Water Pulse. Afterwards it said its farewells to Froakie and the group as it and Sanpei went on their way.

It reappeared in A Stealthy Challenge!, as a Greninja. Greninja battled a masked ninja's Barbaracle but it got poisoned by Barbaracle's Poison Jab and was sent flying into a river along with its Trainer. Later, Greninja battled Barbaracle again along with Ash's Pikachu and Froakie. Although Greninja and Pikachu got blinded by Barbaracle's Mud-Slap, Froakie managed to defeat Barbaracle after evolving into Frogadier. Later, after Sanpei completed his mission, Greninja battled Ash's newly evolved Frogadier, but the outcome of this battle remains unknown.

Greninja's known moves are Smokescreen, Quick Attack, Bubble, Water Pulse, Double Team, and Water Shuriken.

Debut A Rush of Ninja Wisdom!
Voice actors
Japanese Kiyotaka Furushima
English Billy Bob Thompson

Voice actors

Language Voice actor
Japanese 三瓶由布子 Yūko Sanpei
English Chris Patton
Italian Stefano Pozzi
Polish Adam Pluciński
European Spanish Javier Lorca


  • The names of Ippei, Nihei and Sanpei are a play on the Japanese words for one, two, and three: "ichi" (一), "ni" (二) and "san" (三).
  • He shares his name with the surname of his Japanese voice actor.

Anime characters
Protagonists Ash KetchumPikachuMistyTogeticBrockTracey SketchitMayMaxDawnPiplupIrisAxewCilanSerenaClemontBonnieDedenne
Rivals GaryRitchieHarrisonDrewHarleyMorrisonTysonSolidadPaulZoeyNandoKennyConwayBarryUrsulaTobiasTripBiancaBurgundyStephanGeorgiaCameronVirgilMietteTiernoShaunaTrevorNiniSawyer
Antagonists JessieJamesMeowthGiovanniButchCassidyDr. NambaMatoriPierceDr. ZagerShellyArchieTabithaMaxieHunter JSaturnMarsJupiterCyrusCharonColressAldithGhetsisBarretLysandreXerosicCelosiaBryonyMableAliana
Professors Professor OakProfessor IvyProfessor ElmProfessor BirchProfessor RowanProfessor CarolinaProfessor JuniperCedric JuniperDr. FennelProfessor Sycamore
Relatives Delia KetchumFlintLolaForrestBrock's siblingsDaisyVioletLilyJames's parentsNormanCarolineNanny and Pop-PopJohannaChiliCressGraceMeyer
Supporting Officer JennyNurse JoyTodd SnapCharles GoodshowCaseyLizaSakuraLanceStevenMr. SukizoRaoul ContestaVivian MeridianRobertScottLilian MeridianMarianRhondaCynthiaReggieAngieLookerLyraKhouryDon GeorgeAlderLukeFreddy O'MartianIngoEmmetMontgomeryJervisNAnthea and ConcordiaPorterAlexaClembotSanpeiAlainMairinAriaDianthaGurkinnMonsieur PierreGym LeadersElite FourFrontier BrainsMany temporary characters

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