Day 14 Torikumi is up!

You can see all the bouts scheduled for the penultimate day of the Hatsu basho here. The headline is that the two Day 12 leaders, Shodai and Tokushoryu, have been matched up head-to-head! The chaser, Ozeki Takakeisho, fights Sekiwake Asanoyama.

What does this mean for senshuraku? If Shodai prevails tomorrow and on Day 14, and Takakeisho remains one win behind him, they cannot face each other, as they already met on Day 9, with Shodai recording his biggest victory of the tournament. Shodai has also faced all other san’yaku rikishi and Hokutofuji, so the best the schedulers might be able to do is to pit him against Endo or Mitakeumi, whichever has the better record going into Day 15. On the other hand, should Tokushoryu hold a share of the lead going into Day 15, the schedulers could well test his yusho-worthiness by matching him with the Ozeki, since there’s not much reason other than tradition for Takakeisho to fight Goeido, who is already make-koshi and has nothing but pride at stake.

Please leave any thoughts you have on the scheduling, and on other bouts that excite you, in the comments.

22 thoughts on “Day 14 Torikumi is up!

  1. Shodai already did all the hard work to win the basho, it is his to lose, he beat everyone. But he has to stay focused because Kagayaki today is not a given and Tokoshoryu is very confident, they are both winnable matches but also very easy to lose if he is not focused. If he does win those two and Takakeisho wins his next two, then yeah, poor Takakeisho won’t have the chance to put destiny in his own hands by beating shodai, all he has to do is pray for him to lose. Which can still happen. This is still very exciting. I wouldn’t mind any of these two winning. Shodai has beautiful sumo and he is very acomplished, with tournament wins in lower divs and I think an amateur championship? A Makuuchi basho would put him in another level of accomplishments.

    But if Takakeisho wins, we would officialy be in a Yokozuna run by a 23 year old Japanese kid! Can you believe that? Just in time to, when the Yokozunas are riding into the sunset, Takakeisho comes back from injury out of nowere with evolved sumo, some pulls, some throws, (mostly canonball sumo of course) on his way to yokozuna? Epic doesn’t even begin to describe how cool that would be.


    And if Tokoshoryu wins the whole thing? When is the last time a Megashira 17 won a basho? (serious question, I do not know)

    I love this stuff, march can’t come soon enough.

    • Amazingly, there was one previous yusho won from 17W, by Dewaminato in 1939 (when there were only two basho per year and only 13 days per basho). The lowest in the modern era (since 1958) is M14e Takatoriki in March 2000.

    • About time Tokushoryu fights the top wrestlers… I mean he hasn’t fought above M8, while Yushodai the Valiant hasn’t fought below M7… Yes I am biased, and I am light-years away from understanding what motivates the different committees in their decision, but I think they are waiting too long to put Tokushoryu to the test. However if he beats Shodai, then gets to face Takakeisho on senshuraku, he’ll be be a very worthy winner, should he win.

  2. I’m really looking forward to the Tokushoryu vs Shodai bout. Naturally this should be an easy win for SHodai, but Tokushoryu is really an escape artist this basho.
    For Takakeisho I fear the story will end with his match against Asanoyama. It’s easy to see him lose that. If he doesn’t and finishes 13-2 he could be on a Yokozuna run already, if he dominates and wins the Osaka basho. However they have been a bit tentative with his Ozeki promotion (rightfully at this time I think), so they might also be very strict with the Yokozuna promotion or at least demand a string of consecutive strong showings like in Kisenosato’s case. If there wasn’t this dud in Kyushu, that would help a lot.
    I doubt it’s coming to that, but I would be really curious to see, if the schedule Takakeishou vs Tokoshoryu for Senshuraku if both stay at 1 and 2 losses respectively. However I think with Asanoyama and Hokutofuji there are some other strong opponents available for Tokushoryu. Somehow I doubt they scratch the only Ozeki match in a tournament that already features no Yokozuna.

    • cause enough for another reset on andy scandal clock
      only team tokushoryu can nod to allowing his bulbousness to get away with this

      where are the grownups in sumo?
      thank goodness sumo gods are providing terunosaurus, coming up soon to restore order

      enho will assist
      (champ is occupied practicing for olympics, while kakuryu continues long nap)

    • I can’t see 13-2 being enough to count towards a Yokozuna run without the yusho, even if it is a yusho equivalent with him losing in a playoff (it’s also possible that 13-2 could be the jun-yusho score if either Shodai or Tokushoryu win tomorrow and Sunday). Bear in mind this is Takakeisho’s first complete basho as an Ozeki. I think they’ll want him to prove himself a couple more times before they give him the rope. It’s not like they NEED a Yokozuna. The banzuke only requires two Ozeki so even if Hakuho and Kakuryu both retired it would still be fine.

      • I agree with you and maybe I didn’t make that clear enough. I think there is an outside chance that a 13-2 hatsu and a 15-0 Osaka Basho is enough, but it’s an outside chance that could have been slightly higher, if he had earned at least 12 wins in Kyushu too.

        Anyways, I believe Asanoyama will beat him tomorrow, I mean Takayasu almost did today …

        • 13-2 will be enough if he wins the yusho by taking the playoff. They can’t really deny him the chance when he’s got the trophy in his hands. If he loses a playoff though, and just has the yusho equivalent, then that gives them enough room to say “Sorry, not good enough yet.” That’s the beauty of the promotion system. With nothing written down, they are free to judge case by case.

        • I doubt there will be a playoff, if he comes in second, it will probably second to a 14-1 Shodai or Tokushoryu. On the other hand, a 3-way playoff would be nice too ;)

  3. Every day I wait for Tokushoryu to fall on his blubber. Every day he escapes. Enough with the madness!

  4. I have an issue with Tokoshoryu being in contention just because he hasn’t faced off against the same calibur of talent as Shodai has. Yes his sumo has been Amazing and he has dropped the one standing Ozeki. However, in the long run he has not had to battle Sekiwake or Komusubi, Ozeki or any other the likes. I’m happy he’s here fighting Shodai head to head. Still, I don’t see them placing him against Takakeisho should he win just because of tradition. I mean it’s not quite the same but when Ichinojo and Hakuho were tied, Tradition won out and Ichi lost his chance at a Yusho having never faced Hakuho. Will this REALLY be any different just because it’s not a yokozuna battle? Long o story short I think Tokoshoryu should be facing the Ozeki today, and Shodai facing someone else. Then on the final day if they are tied, they can have their play off match and if not and Takakeisho is tied with someone having Beaten Goeido they have a play off match for the Yusho.. to me it makes for a MUCH better drama run and allows the 2 remaining Ozeki to battle in the final day in the final bout.

    • Seeing as I can’t edit my own comment. To clarify I ran 2 sentences together. I meant Tokoshoryu has sumo has been amazing but he has NOT dropped the one standing Ozeki like Shodai has.

      • Shodai’s performance this January is stunning, and I sincerely hope this is a new level of sumo for him.

  5. I will not make any call of who will win as both are too close to call and it depends on the state of mind of the 4 men on the day itself. But here is what is at stake

    Shodai vs Tokushoryu- winner takes (almost) all, since Takakeisho will have to win as well to bring things to the wire on Day 15. A battle of will-power if you like because chances like this doesnt come often

    Takakeisho vs Asanoyama- interesting matchup between two up and comers with strong solid approaches. if Takakeisho loses, there will be no Senshuraku drama at all as the winner of Shodai-Tokushoryu will immediately become champion

    • If Takakeisho loses, the winner between Shodai and Tokushoryu will NOT immediately become champion. If on day 15 the winner between them loses and the loser between them wins, there will be a playoff between them.


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