Hakuho remains unbeaten. Terunofuji is still the closest competitor, the only one with any hope of challenging, two losses back. He faces Hakuho tomorrow in a big showdown. With a win tomorrow, Hakuho will secure his 34th yusho and extend his lead to 3 bouts with 2 remaining. Even with a loss, though, Terunofuji will need help from either Harumafuji or Kisenosato to force a playoff. The only way to avoid the playoff is if Hakuho loses all three bouts and Terunofuji wins out.
In the meantime, one wrestler just behind Terunofuji with 9 wins is Ga-ga-ga-ga Gagamaru! Tied with Chiyootori and Harumafuji, Gagamaru has been very strong this tournament. I don’t know what it is but something seems to have clicked with him. He’s been using his size to his advantage and has only stumbled a few times so far.
Osunaarashi has also been very impressive. Though he lost today against Chiyootori, he’s found a variety of ways to get wins this tournament, especially on the belt. For the last few tournaments it seemed like his knees were gone and he had those big Aminishiki-like wraps. Without the ability to grapple, he was becoming one dimensional with an admittedly fierce slap attack that cost at least one opponent a broken nose. But this basho has seen a much more authoritative Osunaarashi. Having secured a winning record yesterday, it would be good to see him garner double-digit wins.
Ichinojo secured his winning record today along with Sokokurai. Tamawashi is going the other way, and with his losing record will drop from the sanyaku.