Hatsu Leaderboard Day 10

As we close out act 2, we have a very clear picture of the yusho race. In a nut shell, it’s Hakuho’s to lose. The dai-Yokozuna is a brutally skilled competitor, and after a couple of shaky matches to start the basho, he is dispatching all opponents with flair and style. For any other rikishi to have even a chance of contending for the cup, Hakuho would need to lose 2 matches. Short of injury over the next 6 days, that would be unlikely.

The only chaser is a resurgent Chiyonokuni, who while performing well, would likely prove no real challenge for Hakuho. Though a match between Hakuho and Yago would be interesting.

But the more interesting story might be Takakeisho’s bid to become Ozeki. After his 13 wins to take the Kyushu yusho, his magic number to reach 33 is 11 during the Hatsu basho. Headed into day 10. he is 7-2, and needs 4 wins over the next 6 days. But he has Takayasu and Hakuho to face. He last faced Hakuho at Aki, for a loss. After their initial match during Nagoya 2017, each subsequent bout has seen Takakeisho coming closer to presenting a worthy challenge. We expect the Takakeisho / Hakuho to be one of the highlights of act 3, and may happen as soon as day 11.

Leader: Hakuho
Chaser: Chiyonokuni
Hunt Group: Takakeisho, Tamawashi, Kaisei, Yago

6 Matches Remain

13 thoughts on “Hatsu Leaderboard Day 10

  1. i’d love to see Yago rejoin the chaser group which would be wonderful for his debut tournament in the top division. Blast that Black Knight – u can never discount him!

  2. Though a match between Hakuho and Yago would be interesting.
    LOL. We just discussed the same with my wife!

    And a Fighting Spirit Prize to Ikioi (at least) !!!! I would need that internal flame what drives him every day against the many injuries and – probably – pain.

    • The general rule is 33 wins over 3 consecutive basho at sanyaku ranks. So because he was M2 in the last basho this can only be the start of an Ozeki run

      He spent a long time at Sekiwake previously and while comfortable at that rank, I don’t think he ever really threatened an Ozeki promotion

    • When and on what basis? He was 4-11 as Komusubi two basho again. Even if they count his unremarkable 9-6 at M2 in Kyushu, he’d need to average 12 wins this basho and next. So perhaps if he finishes out this basho with at most one more loss and puts up similar numbers in Osaka. More likely, he’ll need to string together 3 consecutive strong double-digit-win basho at Sekiwake, something he hasn’t been able to do in the past.

      • On NHK Highlights last night, I think Raja Pradhan said something along the lines of Tamawashi is trying for Ozeki. It isn’t something I note that they would usually say for any old random Sekiwake who is there for the first time (ie mention that potential step up to ozeki). Which made me wonder whether he was considered to be on a run.

          • I think that’s it Tom, he’s definitely talked before about his desire to make Ozeki but doing it is another matter!

          • Fair enough, he’s certainly looked like an Ozeki this tournament. He’s had a few strong basho in the past, but hasn’t been super-consistent, and his best top-division record is 11-4, achieved only once. Would be great to see him go on a run.


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