Takayasu And Terunofuji Update

In the previous health report I did not have details about Takayasu and Terunofuji, so here is the news. Unfortunately, it is not too encouraging.


When I read that Kisenosato decided to go out for degeiko with Kotoshogiku et al., it was clear to me that Takayasu has probably taken a turn for the worse, as Kisenosato said at first that he’ll “prefer to practice at home now that Takayasu is fine”.

And indeed, it turns out that Takayasu stayed behind and spent today only doing light butsukari with low-level opponents, and there’s word that he will not be attending the Nishonoseki Ichimon’s collective practice tomorrow, which Kisenosato most certainly will.

“I would like to do more” responded Takayasu to press questions, but still kept at a low pace, perhaps hoping to attend the collective practice after all.

(Mainly Nikkan Sports)

The next item was also originally published by Nikkan sports yesterday, but it was retracted, and currently there’s only this copy at Mixi News which may also disappear. Just so you know how Japanese sports media work…


Turns out Terunofuji had a miserable day yesterday. He started to practice with a Makushita opponent just after 10AM, with a heavily taped knee, and only managed a miserable 8:8, of which there were two occurrences of three consecutive losses.

After 15 minutes like that, he left the dohyo and walked around it, checking on his knee. After a 30 minute break, he decided to resume his practice, this time with Takarafuji. This ended up 2:6. That is, two wins for Terunofuji, six for Takarafuji.

After that he lightly grappled with one of the youngsters for a few minutes, mainly to test his ability to apply force to his knee.

Although he kept a sunny expression on his face and joked around with the youngsters, when he was questioned by the present members of the press, he opted to delegate handling them to his tsukebito.

Today Sports Navi published a video of Isegahama practices (proxy required outside Japan). It shows Aminishiki doing several bouts against a low-rank opponent – successfully. Then Terunofuji taking several bouts with Homarefuji. Then Harumafuji several with Terutsuyoshi (also successfully).

Terunofuji’s bouts in that video clip fit the article above. 6W3L vs. a Juryo opponent. He seems to have a hard time dealing with oshi-zumo, and he winces and limps.

A tweet I ran into also implies that he requires water to be drained from his knee regularly, though it didn’t specify the source of that information, or how frequently.

The retracted article ends saying that at this rate, it’s questionable whether Terunofuji will be able to turn out the ten wins required for him to return to Ozeki (and I suppose this summary was the reason the article was retracted). I agree.

6 thoughts on “Takayasu And Terunofuji Update

  1. Very worrying for Terunofuji, who was everyone’s “next yokozuna” in 2015 and looked to be returning to his best earlier this year. He’s till only 26 but his prospects look gloomy. I’m guessing that he will compete and soldier on to the end of the basho: he may even squeak a kachi-koshi but 10 wins is most unlikely. Please prove me wrong, big fella.

    • You’re more optimistic than I. I have a feeling we’ll get a replay of Aki – Terunofuji showing up for three or four days, scraping a single win, getting flattened in the others, and then exacerbates his injury and exits, stage left.

      • I agree with Herouth. Terunofuji has been stubborn with his injury and believes that fighting thorugh it is the best option. Everyone else that I’ve seen comment on this situation disagrees. It’s unfortunate.

  2. I foresee a lot of curses issuing from my mouth during this basho. (Too bad I don’t have any magical powers, cause that’s what he’ll need to win 10 matches.) Mostly towards the coaches and doctors working with Ura and Terunofuji. Still looks like they should have come to terms with the demotion and gotten surgery.

    • Add to the problems above the obviously weakened Harumafuji, and I expect every bit of misery I felt in the previous basho, and then some.

      In Terunofuji’s case, I don’t know that he had to have surgery. What I’m pretty sure about is that he needs to get some 20-30kg off those knees and he’s not showing any signs of going in that direction, and that he needs to pace his workouts, like Harumafuji does (he calls it “consulting with his body”). Terunofuji is so headstrong you can bounce rocks off his skull. “I have to overdo it!”. Seriously, you’re not superman. Muscles need to have rest in order to build up, and damaged joints need to be rested and cooled and only gradually exercised. Every carpenter or builder knows that he needs to respect his tools, oil them, sharpen them, clean them. Terunofuji abuses his tools. He’s going to pay for that with his long-term health, and we, the fans, are going to pay for that in tears and misery.

      • Agreed. I hate to say it cause I’m a big fan of the kaiju kid, but maybe he needs a setback like this to crack open that thick skull and learn some humility and patience. He needs to realize he’s not Hakuho 2.0, and that he’d be better off taking it easy and having a long, if not stellar career like some of his elder stablemates.

        The reason I was leaning towards surgery is the rumors about “draining” his knee. It sounded a lot like an issue one of my friends had that he had fixed with some minimally invasive endoscopy. But who knows, trying to figure out sumo injuries is like looking up stuff on WebMD, even the vaguest things end up being terminal. ;)


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