It’s almost all done for the lower ranks, with a handful of rikishi left to face their 7th opponent today or Sunday. Day 13 saw wins by Wakamotoharu, Ichiyamamoto, Wakatakamoto (that means all 3 Onami brothers won on day 13), Naya, Terunofuji, Shoji and Kitanowaka. That’s almost a complete sweep for our list!
For day 14, the roster is lighter, but there are still some great matches yet to come.
Hoshoryu vs Kizenryu – It’s time for a Darwin match with only one exiting the dohyo with a winning record. Hoshoryu won their only prior match, during Hatsu this year. Two high-skill rikishi with everything on the line in a single match. One will be promoted, the other demoted for July. This is what sumo is all about.
Midorifuji vs Sakigake – Another winner take all match. This time it is the challenger, Sakigake, who has won the prior match. The winner gets promoted, the loser gets demoted. At stake is likely a slot in the Makushita joi-jin, with a chance at promotion to Juryo up for grabs July.
Akua vs Nogami – Akua is already kachi-koshi, but he needs a bit more juice to put him into the top of Makushita for July if he wants to make a bid to return to Juryo. These matches on day 14 are going to be fast, hard and brutal.
Roga vs Kaizen – Roga is already kachi-koshi as well, but a 5th win might just break him out of Sandanme if the stars align. Kaizen has already spent a few basho in Makushita, and will bring that experience to bare in today’s match vs Roga’s raw power.
Wakaichiro vs Goshinryu – Our favorite Jonidan rikishi looks to hit escape velocity and return to Sandanme today against Goshinryu, who is fighting at his highest ever rank. Wakaichiro’s sumo seems to have gotten much more efficient this basho, so I am looking for a high energy oshi-battle between these two.
Kenho vs Sasaki – We have not followed Kenho this tournament, but he also faces a Darwin match on day 14, and could find himself with a winning record if he can overcome youngster and light weight Sasaki. Good luck Kenho!