Natsu Day 1 Highlights

Title Card 3

Solid Start To Summer Tournament

Day one at the Kokugikan saw a capacity crowd, with fans eager to see who among their favorite rikishi were starting strong, and who they would worry about.

First some notes from Juryo: New entrant Takagengi won his debut match as a sekitori, many will see this as a good sign that the youngster can be competitive in the upper ranks. The match was acrobatic and could have gone either way, but it was good sumo!

Selected Matches

Ikioi defeats Hokutofuji – Ikioi exploded off the line and then overpowered Hokutofuji for a rather straight forward Okidashi

Takarafuji defeats Aoiyama – This match was all over the place, and for some reason Aoiyama trying to grab for Takarafuji’s non-existent neck. Takarafuji stayed mobile and took the punishment waiting for his chance, which came at the edge as Aoiyama tried a pull down, but failed.

Takayasu defeats Daiesho – This was horrifically one sided, with Takayasu in control from the tachiai. Takayasu’s slap down was loud and strong, with some fans gasping as it was unleashed. 9 more wins for a viable chance at Ozeki for Takayasu

Goeido defeats Okinoumi – First of all, I can almost swear that Goeido lost a considerable amount of mass. Secondly, he heavily protected his damaged right ankle, including a move at the edge of the ring that did not look easy or comfortable. I think Goeido has real problems.

Endo defeats Terunofuji – The big Mongolian Ozeki started strong, and went for his favored double outside shoulder grip, but somehow Endo countered or at least stayed away from the edge of the tawara. As Terunofuji went to put Endo away, Endo reached down to grabe Terunofujis (injured) knee. At that point Terunofuji eased up and Endo finished him.

Hakuho defeats Chiyonokuni – The Gyoji almost gave it to Chiyonokuni, but it was clear that Hakuho blasted him at the tachiai. Chiyonokuni as been progressing steadily in the past year, and made a good showing against Hokuho. I should not that Hakuho did not see to be hesitant, favoring any part of his body or injured in any way. It may be the case fans finally can see him in good form once more.

Mitakeumi defeats Kakuryu – Very strong work from Mitakeumi once more. Kakuryu’s reactive sumo left him out of room at the edge and off balance. Mitakeumi was able to finish him.

Yoshikaze defeats Kisenosato – Kisenosato looked unsure and unsteady. As noted in prior posts, the kind of injury he suffered usually requires surgery if it can be repaired at all. As a Yoshikaze fan I appreciate his winning, but it’s worrisome to see sumo’s #1 ratings machine in trouble.

More tomorrow as it happens (if the 4G signal can behave) from the Kokugikan.

6 thoughts on “Natsu Day 1 Highlights

  1. Hi, I discovered your site from one of Jason’s videos. Very comprehensive news and articles about sumo. Keep up the good work.

    • Welcome Bobby, and thank you very much for not only reading our site, but taking the time to give us a shout out. We do it more or less as a labor of love.

  2. Hakuho was unbelievably fierce from the tachiai, Chiyonokuni was blown away. With Kakuryu and Kisenosato losing (Kisenosato looks pretty injured as we suspected), then Hakuho has got such a good chance to win his first basho in a year.

    Impressed by Yutakayama and Takakeisho, also a great bout between Takanoiwa and Tochiozan!

    • Yes, as a Hakuho fan, I jumped when I saw him blast into the tachiai like he has not really done since last year. There was a noticeable “ooooh” from the crowd, and a hearty cheer. In spite of there being a lot of happiness over the Japanese born Yokozuna, the great Hakuho still has a strong following and a lot of respect from the fans.

    • I have loved seeing the ferocity from Hakuho in these first two bouts. I hope he keeps it up! It almost cost him in that first bout. Beware the pull…

  3. It was almost like Hak wanted to send a message to all the others that he his back, healthy, and still a force to deal with, despite being a year since his last yusho. Very exciting to see him look so powerful at the tachiai.


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