Now It’s Getting Weird
Day 9 of the Hatsu basho took sumo fans to a strange place, and left them there. Frankly, I am not sure where this tournament is going now. To start with, we had the spectacle of Kotoshogiku winning against a listless appearing Kisenosato, who less than 24 hours earlier had a clear path to the yusho gifted him by Arawashi’s defeat of Hakuho. Moments later, Hakuho managed to lose to Takayasu. This means that Kisenosato now shares the lead with… Maegashira 10 Takanoiwa?
Moments after that, Ikioi defeated Yokozuna Kakuryu, bringing Ikioi in line with the huge group in second place. Earlier, Arawashi defeated the struggling Terunofuji, as he seems to have developed a taste for sanyaku blood. Adding in today’s results, we get this mess:
Hatsu Leader Board
Leaders – Kisenosato, Takanoiwa
Hunt Group – Hakuho, Ikioi, Hokutofuji, Sokokurai, Ichinojo
Chasers – Goeido, Takayasu, Mitakeumi, Takekaze, Sadanoumi
6 Matches Remain
What this means is that the yusho race is wide open, including rank and file Maegashira way down the banzuke.