It’s back to Hakuho and Kakuryu. We knew at least one of the leaders would fall off pace today since Hakuho faced Terunofuji. This lived up to the hype. It was a great bout. Terunofuji seemed to have the early edge since he had position in the center of the ring. But Hakuho is very patient. He very quickly made a move to regain the center, and as a result, Terunofuji lost his left hand grip. Hakuho then used his powerful two-handed belt grip to leverage the shin-ozeki out of the ring. Great. Bout.
Kakuryu, however, dominated Kotoshogiku from the outset. Giku can only afford to lose one more match and he has to face Hakuho tomorrow. I don’t think it will be a stretch to say he’ll be quick out of the gate tomorrow, hoping to overpower Hakuho. He also has Terunofuji, Ichinojo, and likely Kaisei left to face. Assuming he loses tomorrow to Hakuho, he cannot lose any of these other matches or he will be demoted.
Tochiozan fell to an aggressive, attacking Goeido. I like this Goeido. He wrapped his arm around Tochiozan’s head and pulled him down. Tochiozan will face Okinoumi tomorrow while Goeido faces Takekaze. At this point, Tochiozan has the advantage with a much easier schedule. The big test tomorrow, Kakuryu faces Terunofuji. Terunofuji wants to stay in the hunt while I’m sure Kakuryu wants to stay in the lead.
Endo got his kachi koshi against Kotoyuki. Kotoyuki pounced quickly but Endo withstood the charge. Kotoyuki was very aggressive, but also very straight forward and one dimensional. Endo fended off each attack and batted him down with hatakikomi. It’s great to see him back and apparently healthy. He’ll face Seiro tomorrow.
Kyokutenho, on the other hand, has been going in the opposite direction. He now has a losing record and will need to fight to stay in makuuchi. Oosunaarashi ran away from Chiyotairyu and ended up in the 3rd row of spectators. Yoshikaze picked up his winning record in a quick one against Kagamio. Amuru got a straight forward yorikiri win over GAGAMARU for kachi koshi. I’m sure he’s got special prize on his mind now.