Hatsu 2019 Banzuke Published


Attention all sumo fans! The Japan Sumo Association has published the banzuke for the January basho. Due to the holidays around New Years in Japan, the Hatsu banzuke tends to show up early, and for sumo fans in the western world, it makes a great Christmas gift. Some notes:

  • Believe it or not, Kisenosato got Yokozuna 1E for showing up and winning zero matches.
  • Sekiwake ranks are Takakeisho on the east, and Tamawashi on the west.
  • Ichinojo dropped completely out of San’yaku down to Maegashira 1W
  • Nishikigi is at Maegashira 2E, good luck sir, you continue to surprise.
  • Kotoshogiku returns to the joi-jin at Maegashira 4
  • Takanoiwa holds Maegashira 9E in spite of leaving the sport after roughing up a tsukibeto.
  • No new shikona for Yago for his Makuuchi debut, though many anticipated he would get his “kaze” name.
  • Ura launches to Makushita 23 following his Sandanme yusho in November.
  • Terunofuji down to Sandanme 88, rumors are that he is training and may enter the tournament.
  • Wakaichiro down to Jonidan 36

We may put together a news update later today or early tomorrow to discuss the banzuke and the upcoming January tournament.

18 thoughts on “Hatsu 2019 Banzuke Published

  1. Kotoshogiku is up high, but I’m not sure about his current state of health. He didn’t participate in the torikumi in the last leg of the Jungyo. Yutakayama and Chiyonokuni are also a worry.

    The fact that Terunofuji is practicing is not a rumor – this was in the mainstream press. Whether he’ll show up for Hatsu or not is another question, though he is definitely supposed to.

    Hoshoryu is ranked slightly above Ura at Ms#21W. So this means they won’t face each other on day 1. I can dream of them meeting only in playoff…

    • There is plenty of precedent of treating rikishi who fail to compete at all worse than those who competed and failed to win. It happens all the time in the lower divisions, and there is at least one instance (and probably more) of a 0-0-7 being demoted past a 0-7 ranked slightly lower. Much in the same way that how good a 2-6 is depends on if the last match was a win or loss (8th match losses don’t count, but an 8th match win doesn’t totally negate one of the losses), how good a 0-win tournament is for banzuke purposes can depend on circumstances.

      It’s still funny though.

  2. The real burning question is whether Yago will finally get that mop into an oichomage. I swear it’s looked long enough for about 3 basho now (but then he does have a massive head).

  3. Meaningless fact ahoy. Yago at 13e is the highest ranked newcomer since Ura came in at 12w in March 2017. Just saying.

    • A combination of how well he did at the very top of Juryo and just how close to demotion the last five Makuuchi survivors were.

  4. Newbie question here – is Takanoiwa on the banzuke because they finalize it long before they publish it? And they never go back to redo it – they don’t have a “Waiting list” to automatically fill in slots left vacant from withdrawals before the banzuke is published? Or was there some delay for them to approve his withdrawal?

        • Thanks, that makes sense, it could set off a cascade of changes – so they just leave the rankings as is and adjust matches day to day as injuries, recoveries, etc alter who is available.

          • It’s really a case of “that’s the way we do it: always has been, always will be”. Takanoiwa’s retirement was accepted on 7 December, so they had two and a half weeks to shift five or six wrestlers: hardly an impossible task.

            • And the calligraphy plays a role too…the banzuke committee meeting is the Wednesday right after the basho.

              • If they can get it all worked out in three days they could get it reworked out and calligraphed in seventeen days. Heck, I can look at the banzuke and say “take Takanoiwa out and move up all the 1e guys from juryo, makushita etc. It’s not bloody particle physics.

              • I don’t think it’s the decision-making part, or even the fact that someone else would move up to sekitori status, which usually gets announced immediately. I don’t know how easy it would be to get all the shimpan together for another meeting, but I understand the calligraphy is really time-consuming. I’m sure Herouth and others can weigh in with a clearer explanation, and your answer of “tradition” is always a good one when it comes to sumo.


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