It was an interesting sumo day at the EDION arena. Bruce has already given you the highlights of Makuuchi. But there is much action to see in the other divisions.
Former Ozeki Terunofuji has broken a 6-month draught, winning his bout vs. Gagamaru by Uwatenage.
Yesterday Terunofuji said that while his knee problems are mostly gone, he has to contend with the diabetes at the moment. He was told that it will take him six months to get his body back in shape, and he is hoping, by working out as much as possible, to shorten that period. He was certainly happy about that long awaited white star, though you can’t see that in the video.
Our favorite Uncle Sumo is not doing as well, though. Yesterday Takekaze has given him a Hatakikomi from his own book. Today, despite much support from the Osaka crowd, he just couldn’t stand his ground vs. Kyokutaisei. He hinted on the Isegahama web site that his injury is not quite healed as yet.
Another crowd favorite who is not doing very well is our muscular pixie, Enho. I believe it’s mostly nerves rather than body size, though. The other shin-Juryo, Takayoshitoshi, has also lost both his bouts so far, and he is most certainly not vertically challenged.
I… wish he didn’t go for the henka. It’s unlike him. His tactic has always been to drive forward. Of course, variety would help. Instead of always going for a mae-mitsu he could try the same barrage of tsuppari Wakaichiro used yesterday. Anyway, don’t pull. Hakuho told him that he looked “lost”.
Not far away from him on the banzuke, is the returning victim of the Harumafuji affair, Takanoiwa. And he looks like he hasn’t been a day away from the dohyo:
Trying to get a mawashi grip, keeping his body low. Shimanoumi finds himself below the dohyo. Takanoiwa is now 2-0. Seriously, somebody should give Hakuho the address of the hospital where Takanoiwa was hospitalized all this time because it seems that their treatment program includes lower body exercise of top quality.
And here is a bout in which I wanted neither rikishi to lose, really, but I wish it was Terutsuyoshi who won at the end.
Note Terutsuyoshi’s coming back up the dohyo. The crowd appreciated that – as well as his usual generous salt throw.
Further down we go. Toyonoshima is still trying to overcome his injuries and return to Sekitori status. He promised the late Tokitenku that he’ll be back. But it is getting more and more difficult as time goes by:
His rival is Rendaiyama. You can see Toyonoshima’s experience – but like Aminishiki, he just can’t withstand strong attacks from younger rivals.
In Sandanme, I’m sorry to report that Shunba lost to Kaonishiki by oshi-dashi, as did Terunohana (kimedashi, to Daishokaku).
Down at Jonidan, after his stablemates appeared on day 1 with mixed results (Oshozan won, Sumidagawa and Honma lost), Torakio opened his Haru basho today. Something in his expression tells me that he finally knows where he has landed, and I’m not sure he likes it too much.
It’s no fun having a heavy supporter on your arm this early in your career. But nevertheless, he uses that very arm to throw Nakao and win by uwatenage.
One of the “ones to watch” – Yoshoyama – also made his first appearance today. His torikumi ended in a couple of seconds. There seems to be an improvement there, but I still see a Shodai-like tachiai there.
No individual video, so here is the time-marked video of the whole set of Jonidan torikumi:
(If the time mark doesn’t work for you, shift to 19m10s manually).
Finally, down at Jonokuchi, both the famous grandson and the famous nephew made their first public appearances (at least, the first on-banzuke). Let’s start with Naya, Taiho’s grandson. He was facing Urutora:
Quite a bit of difference in mass there… Shikihide oyakata certainly doesn’t believe in force-feeding his deshi. Not a real match for the huge Naya who swats him away as if he were a fly.
Hoshoryu – Asashoryu’s nephew – faced Nakanishi, the new Sakaigawa man. This was a totally different match altogether:
Ahhhh…. that’s real sumo. Before the basho, Takanosho decided to practice with Hoshoryu. Hoshoryu is a Jonokuchi newcomer. Takanosho a sekitori. And Takanosho found himself on his back. And seeing today’s bout, we know why. I don’t know if he’ll be a Yokozuna like his uncle, but that boy is certainly not going to be doing laundry and cleaning toilets for long.
Isn’t sumo great?