Kisenosato Gets A Worthy Match

Battle With Mitakeumi Tests Ozeki’s Resolve

Kisenosato has looked positively bored during the first four days of Hatsu. The Ozeki faced a variety of Maegashira, none of them took more than a few seconds to escort from the ring. While it was valuable instruction for the rank and file rikishi, sumo fans want to see Kisenosato open up his sumo and really work.

Expectations for the day 5 match with Mitakeumi were high, as Mitakeumi has been competing with great skill and power, already claiming a Yokozuna and Ozeki defeat.

This match did not disappoint, with Mitakeumi and Kisenosato engaging in a battle of massive strength, as each man sought to overpower the other. Mitakeumi successfully brought Kisenosato to the edge of the tawara, but could not finish him, but Kisenosato quickly pressed back and moments later won the match by yorikiri.

It was great sumo, and a thrill to watch. If Mitakeumi can deliver this kind of performance consistently, he is a worthy member of sumo’s upper ranks.

2 thoughts on “Kisenosato Gets A Worthy Match

  1. This was the bout of the tournament so far. Absolutely thrilling. It’s great to see Mitakeumi challenging at his rank. Tochinoshin crumbles at the feet of fellow sanyaku wrestlers. It’s clearly too early to think Mitakeumi will be an ozeki soon. So many wrestlers, like Tochiozan, Yoshikaze, even Endo, can show flourishes over a few days. It takes someone special to compete at this level consistently.

    Here, I’m going to be frank. Chairman Moriya needs to shut the fuck up. Yes, Harumafuji bleeds kinboshi. That is the only strike against him. Forget the “injuries”. Likely half of the makuuchi aren’t 100%. I’m thrilled to see Endo back as a competitor. But aside from Kisenosato, the ozeki are the real source of embarrassment. Harumafuji’s last losing record? September 2007. Almost 10 YEARS ago. His last kyujo tournament was more than a year ago.

    Kisenosato has no yusho but he’s the only ozeki worthy of the title. I’m sorry but we’ve had sekiwake and maegashira with championships. Ozeki should be able to compete at this level consistently and aside from Kisenosato, the ozeki cannot. Meanwhile, Harumafuji consistently puts up double-digit wins. March of last year, he only got 9. The time before that, March of 2013.

    (Huge thanks to for its wonderful stats.)

    • Yes, it was really the best match of the first ⅓ of Hatsu. I agree that Moriya talks far too much, and at this point is really in danger of pushing Harumafuji too far. Harumafuji is fairly unique in his approach to sumo, and his presence in the sport provides much needed variety and a huge challenge to anyone wishing to claim and retain the upper ranks. Frankly he needs to be preserved for as long as he is viable.

      That being said, I am thrilled that Hakuho is more or less back in action.

      I also think the great Ozeki purge may happen this year.


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