Aki Story 2 – Goeido & Terunofuji Kadoban


A recurring theme in the past year has been the problems with the current crop of Ozeki, and their tendency to turn in losing records. Ozeki do not get demoted when they end a tournament with a majority losing record. It is, perhaps, a nod to the great difficulty required to rack up 33 wins over the course of 3 tournaments. Instead they get a “warning” that a second consecutive losing record will demote them to Sekiwake. An Ozeki in this state is declared “Kadoban”. This in fact happened to Kotoshogiku within the last year, and he was sadly unable to resurrect his Ozeki rank in the following tournaments. He continues to fade.

Headed into Aki, both Terunofuji and Goeido are at risk of demotion. Goeido was in this status last year entering the Aki basho, and responded by racking up 15 straight victories and taking the yusho. Sadly Goeido could not parlay this into a consistent elevation in performance, and has mixed results for the following tournament. His breathtaking Aki performance led us to coin the term “Goeido 2.0”, which described what seemed to be an entirely different rikishi. He was bold, committed and attacked with a ferocity that left no room for retreat. But Goeido suffered a significant ankle injury during Hatsu, and was forced to seek treatment that included steel pins and plates.

Similarly, Terunofuji underwent surgery in June to attempt repair on his knee, an injury that frequently kept him from top performance. Sadly it was not healed enough for competition when Terunofuji began the Nagoya basho, and he soon withdrew. Since going kyujo, he retired to his native Mongolia for recovery and training, and his working hard to be in condition for the basho.

Both of these men are fierce competitors, and we hope that both of them can clear their kadoban status with style. If reports of injury among the Yokozuna hold true, it may provide some relief to both men, who would find their schedules a bit easier, and their chances of a solid winning record increased.

7 thoughts on “Aki Story 2 – Goeido & Terunofuji Kadoban

  1. I have a multi-part request for info about the demotion of ozeki. These days it’s two consectutive losing records and you are down, regardless of injury, no ifs or buts, no second chances. But back in the day that was not the case. For instance Tochiazuma twice had a losing record followed by a 0-0-15 kyujo (in 2002 and 2003) but kept his rank. When the same thing happened in 2004 he was demoted.

    What exactly was the rule back then and when did it change? What was the rule called? Does ayone think it would be a good idea to reintroduce it?

      • And another two examples from the same era, Kaio 2-2-11 in November 2002, then 0-0-15 in January 2003 but kept ozeki status. Meanwhile Chiyotaikai managed the same thing on three separate occasions. The common factor is the 0-0-15 in the second tournament: it looks as though a kadoban ozeki was allowed to withdraw from a tournament in advance without his rank being affected. My guess is that the authorities scrapped the rule as they thought it was being used to frequently.

    • Thank you Asashosakari; I was waiting for you to give us the real answer! It’s too bad they abolished it–seems like a good system, assuming reasonable controls against abuse.


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