Nagoya Day 13 Highlights

Photo courtesy of the NSK Twitter feed

A short highlights today, as my work has the bulk of my time. The big news is that the yusho race took a dramatic change as upstart Tomokaze surprised Yokozuna Kakuryu with a rapid hatakikomi immediately following the tachiai. I think that Kakuryu may have been looking to blast the newcomer clear of the dohyo, and over-committed.

Yokozuna Hakuho also won his match against Myogiryu in a bout that was both chaotic and a bit cautious. That right arm (heck, the left too) is still a concern. This means that both Yokozuna have 1 loss each, and the stakes for the final match on day 15 have been raised. With Hakuho in damaged condition, it’s not clear cut that he can be expected to dominate that final match.

Terutsuyoshi also won, and remains 1 behind the leaders. His bout against Onosho featured Onosho’s all to common balance and stance issues, stemming from his knee injury and apparently not completely successful reconstruction. After turning in 6-9 in Osaka, then 6-9 for Natsu, Terutsuyoshi’s turn around is almost miraculous. He has shown fantastic sumo in Juryo to get him to this point, but this is in fact his best run since his Makushita yusho in Kyushu 2016.

Other Matches Of Note

Sadanoumi defeats Takagenji – Sadanoumi reaches kachi-koshi, in his best tournament since January.

Kotoeko defeats Enho – Enho just can’t seem to get win #8, as Kotoeko deftly uses his maneuverability to keep Enho out of any meaningful attack position. Great planning and execution by Kotoeko.

Toyonoshima defeats Shohozan – Toyonoshima’s back is against the wall, and he once again rallies to victory. Shohozan gave him a decent fight, but ends up make-koshi after Toyonoshima’s relentless sumo.

Kotoyuki defeats Okinoumi – Once again Okinoumi wanted to set up a stalemate and wait strategy, but this Kotoyuki from a parallel dimension seems to be some sort of sumo ass-kicker, and just took charge.

Meisei defeats Chiyomaru – Meisei finally finds some sumo, and flattens Chiyomaru, who lands with a satisfying bounce similar to a round, inflatable child’s bouncy-toy.

Endo defeats Shimanoumi – Endo kachi-koshi as he dispenses with the “thinking man’s sumo” and just overruns Shimanoumi.

Hokutofuji defeats Ichinojo – This was a great match, as expected, and I have to hand it to Ichinojo for putting up a strong fight. Hokutofuji kept his cool and his composure in the face of an enormous, blue-mawashi’d obstacle.

Tamawashi defeats Takarafuji – Where has this Tamawashi been? This is the guy who should have been fighting all tournament. Sadly this pushed Takarafuji to make-koshi.

Mitakeumi defeats Kotoshogiku – Mitakeumi get his 8, and will retain his Sekiwake 1 East rank for September. He has Kakuryu for day 14, who he has managed to beat about ⅓ of the time they fight.

12 thoughts on “Nagoya Day 13 Highlights

  1. Everybody get in the T-Kaze wagon.

    I don’t wanna curse the young talent with predictions, but I’ll be curious to see what succession path he will follow: Harumafuji, Kakuryu and Kisenosato or Terunofuji, Ichinojo and Mitakeumi.

    • ‘Purple Rain’ – beautiful! You have inspired me to write this (totally rubbish!) haiku:

      Tomokaze pulls
      Purple rainfall in summer
      His first kinboshi

      • Beautiful haiku ☔️💜 my own Tomokaze (yes a ginger tomcat named Tommy when we rescued him, I strengthened his name on adoption) watched that bout with me! I’m still smiling ear to ear!!!

  2. And despite having completed only one basho in 2019 so far, Hakuho now has 37 wins, more than any other wrestler this year in makuuchi.

    • Wow, 37 of 58 is a sad statement on the state of the top division. Mind-boggling that Hakuho won 86 of 90, I believe twice.

      • Sad indeed. I can look at the younger generation and see lots of sanyaku likelys and a few potential ozeki, but the next yokozuna? Not really. Mind you I don’t think too many people had Kakuryu earmarked for the big rope and he hasn’t done too badly so you never know.

  3. I could see Kakuryu was too low at the tachiai, but I wasn’t expecting Tomokaze to pick him off like that — as if he were the high-ranker with the perfect reaction to an opponent’s error.

    • I had said in an earlier post somewhere that T was going to have a point to prove after being unable to budge or fave boulder at their first meeting, PianoKaze didn’t disappoint me! That Haiku, I’ve now got Purple Rain ☔️ going through my head 🤣

  4. 1) For at least the third time this basho, Chiyotairyu does the hit-and-shift move and wins. I’m not sure how often he can employ that strategy and deceive people with it, but right now it works like a charm for him.

    2) Can someone please persuade Meisei to get a new mawashi? The one he’s wearing now is disgustingly filthy. I’m wondering whether he’s using this mawashi in order to discourage other rikishi from trying to grab it. I know I’d be afraid of catching cooties from that hideous thing.

  5. Hakuho reminds me of Seve Ballesteros this basho (must be the golf on tv) – getting in and out of difficult situations with mercurial brilliance.

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