Christmas quiz – the answers

1. How many honbasho have been won by a foreign-born rikishi ?

d. Four : Tamawashi in January, Hakuho in March and November ; Kakuryu in July.

Tamawashi was the surprise winner in January

2. Nobody won more bouts than Asanoyama in 2019. Who finished runner up ?

a. Abi, with 55. Hakuho and Hokutofuji finished with 51 wins, Mitakeumi with 48.

3. And many wins have notched all three yokozuna combined ?

c. 92.  Kakuryu managed to get 41 wins (one yusho), and Hakuho 51 (two yushos). Kisenosato announced his retirement after losing the first three bouts of the January tournament.

49 yusho combined: yokozuna Hakuho (left) and Kakuryu (right)

4. How many shin-makuuchi rikishis (newly promoted wrestlers to the top division) have we seen in 2019 ?

c. Eight : None in Hatsu ; Tomokaze, Terutsuyoshi and Daishoho in Haru ; Shimanoumi and Enho in Natsu ; Takagenji in Nagoya ; Tsurugisho in Aki ; Wakatakakage in Kyushu

Wakatakakage Atsushi

5. How many rikishi have made their san’yaku debut in 2019 ?

Note : we’re only talking about rikishi who have never, ever been in san’yaku before 2019 !

b. Four : Hokutofuji in March ; Abi and Ryuden in September ; Asanoyama in November.

6. What has been Enho’s record in makuuchi ?

d. 7-8 ; 9-6 ; 9-6 ; 8-7

Answer A is Shimanoumi’s record. Answer C is Terutsuyoshi’s record. Answer B is fictional.

7. Abi had a fine year 2019. Which of these statements is true ?

d. He managed six kachi koshi in 2019. He is the only makuuchi wrestler who achieved that.

8. Takakeisho had a mixed year 2019, having to cope with serious injuries. He did so quite impressively, however, going to a playoff in September, where he lost to Mitakeumi. Who was the last rikishi to lose a playoff in makuuchi ?

d. Goeido. Kakuryu lost a playoff in January 2014. Terunofuji lost a playoff in March 2017 for Kisenosato’s yokozuna debut. Ichonojo came close to winning in March 2019 with a 14-1 record but couldn’t match Hakuho’s 15-0 perfect record. Goeido spoiled a three wins lead to surrender the Aki 2017 yusho to Harumafuji, in a playoff. The yokozuna defeated the ozeki twice on senshuraku to leapfrog him.

Ozeki Goeido

9. Terutsuyoshi luckily escaped juryo demotion after the Natsu basho 2019. Sumo gods’ lenience paid off as he produced an astonishing 12-3 result in Nagoya, finishing runner up for his third makuuchi appearance. Who did better ?

d. Ichinojo

Goeido started his makuuchi career with an impressive 11-4 record in Aki 2007, but wasn’t runner up of the event. Hakuho finished runner up four tournaments after his debut, at the end of 2004. Terunofuji finished runner up in March 2015, a year after his debut.

Ichinojo famouslu finished runner up for his makuuchi debut. He produced a fearless 13-2 record, not without henka-ing Kisenosato and Kakuryu in the process.

10. How many foreign rikishi have made a makuuchi appearance in 2019 (having fought in at least one bout) ?

a. Ten : Hakuho, Kakuryu, Tochinoshin, Tamawashi, Ichinojo, Aoiyama, Kaisei, Chiyoshoma, Daishoho, Azumaryu. Takanoiwa was on the January banzuke but, having retired, did not compete in makuuchi in 2019.

11. Ishiura usually bounces from juryo to makuuchi, and from makuuchi to juryo. If M symbolizes makuuchi and J symbolizes juryo, how can one represent Ishiura’s year ?

a. J – M – M – J – M – M

12. What about Chiyomaru ?

d. J – J – M – M – J – M

Chiyomaru Kazuki

13. Azumaryu made a makuuchi return during the Aki basho. He last appeared in makuuchi in…

b. 2014. He also made one appearance during the Natsu basho 2013.

14. Which one of these rikishi have earned two kinboshi in 2019 ?

b. Tomokaze

Nishikigi defeated Kakuryu in January. He had a fusen-sho win over Kisenosato, which does not count as a kinboshi. Asanoyama defeated Kakuryu during the Aki basho. Myogiryu defeated Kakuryu during the Natsu basho. Tomokaze defeated Kakuryu in Nagoya and Aki.

Tomokaze Yuta (right)

15. Which one of these wrestlers have produced six make kochi this year ?

c. Nishikigi, with 7-8, 4-11, 5-10, 6-9, 6-9 and 4-11 records. As a consequence, he’ll be demoted to juryo in January 2020.

Kagayaki had two winning in March and November, while Tochiozan ended up in Juryo in November, where he bounced back with a 10-5 record. Kotoshogiku had just one kachi koshi, in March when he ended up 11-4.