With the first third of the basho in the books, not much has been decided, as one would expect with ten days of competition still to come. However, one goal of all Makuuchi rikishi is to remain in the top division for the next tournament, and some have already done enough to accomplish this.
Not surprisingly, how many wins it takes to stay in Makuuchi depends on the wrestler’s rank. A single victory at M1 or M2 is sufficient, while nothing short of 8 wins will do at M16, with intermediate win thresholds between these two extremes. So where do we stand after Day 5?
Everyone ranked M4 or higher has done enough to be safe from demotion, as have the two M6s, Endo and Chiyotairyu, with their 4-1 records. M5e Daishomaru (1-4) and M5w Yoshikaze (0-5) still have work to do, while the M7 duo of Takarafuji and Daieisho (both 3-2) are right on the cusp of safety, as is M9 Myogiryu (4-1).
Obviously, 10 days is plenty of time for those not yet safe to earn enough victories, but while it’s too early for someone like M8 Kyokutaisei (0-5) to panic, M12 Arawashi (0-5) and M16 Meisei (1-4) need to start banking wins in a hurry.