One of the great attractions sumo holds for me is that it is a meritocracy, the winners advance and the loser decline. Now that we reach the finally quarter of the Aki basho, we can see which sumo men are facing demotion for the next tournament, starting November. The term used is “make-koshi (負け越し)”, or more losses than wins.
Doomed Already (8 losses or more)
Chiyootori, Tochinoshin, Daishomaru, Arawashi, Amakaze, Toyohibiki, Daieisho
In Grave Peril
Terunofuji, Takarafuji, Kaisei, Tochiozan, Yoshikaze, Shodai, Takanoiwa, Myogiryu, Sokokurai
Chiyootori is out with damage to at least one knee. Tochinoshin has been hurt since July or earlier. Amakaze needs a bit more seasoning in Juryo, we will see him again and he has a lot of potential.
Terunofuji is also hurt, his skill is un-degraded but he lacks the power he should (and did) have to put the impact to his moves, he will likely make-koshi soon. Yoshikaze is too banged up to really be a serious threat, and I am worried he was not completely ready for the Aki basho.
While this list holds several rikishi that I support, the mechanism of the sumo ranking is fair and brutal. But I keep in mind that for every wrestler who has a bad record at the end of the tournament, there is a story of redemption waiting to be told in 2 months time.