We are now approaching Day 5 of this pivotal tournament. I’m thrilled so far…but also saddened. There’s just this feeling that “the times, they are a changin.'” Hakuho and Harumafuji are already out of yusho contention with two losses a piece and their schedules don’t ease tomorrow. Hakuho will take on Mitakeumi in the final match of the day – and my highlight match. Mitakeumi is 2-2 in this tournament and also 2-2 in his most recent four bouts against Yokozuna. With Hakuho coming off a shock loss to Ikioi, he may be prime for another upset. Harumafuji’s taking on Shohozan, who grabbed a gold star from the Yokozuna just last tournament.
Kakuryu has been shaky on one loss but has Sokokurai who should be the easiest of his matchups this tournament. Kisenosato is the lone stalwart among our yokozuna. He will face a chuffed Ikioi. Ikioi just blasted Hakuho, really surprising the heck out of me, so I’m not going to write Ikioi off…but he’s facing prime, confident Kisenosato looking at another yusho run.
Takekaze may get his first win of the tournament against Goeido while Takanoiwa may want to call in sick. Terunofuji’s kicking ass and taking names. Kotoshogiku is fighting hard for his Ozeki rank but Tamawashi wants that Ozeki rank, too. Giku’s path is easiest but I really do fear a continuing kadoban cycle if he regains it. He’s battling on one leg. One very powerful leg…but one leg.
Two more ozeki hopefuls, Takayasu and Shodai, will be a thrilling match but I’m giving the edge to Takayasu. He’s been on such amazing form lately while Shodai dropped a close one today against Tamawashi. These ozeki hopefuls are going to cannibalize eachother and it will be thrilling to see who wins. By the looks of it, the winner will be Terunofuji’s lunch.
Further down the banzuke, Tochiozan is proving he is way too low for his skill. He should be looking at a special prize after this tournament. Ichinojo will be eager to take a few envelopes off Endo while Ura will take on a Kagayaki who just looked lost or listless or injured today. The futility bowl is the Okinoumi/Tochinoshin bout. I might turn the channel in that one and just pray no one hurts themselves more.
Dinner time! More to talk about tomorrow! In other random news, I’m getting a new fence tomorrow.