This was meant to be the day I’d start checking off people on my Kachi-Koshi Bingo entry. But noooo… Apparently everyone likes rolling around in the clay so much. There’s clearly not enough Kawaigari with this degeiko ban. Well, at least Kotoshogiku’s back, for now. I guess he’s still technically got a chance for a miracle and that spot on my card’s no longer dead — even if I’ve got him, Shohozan and Enho along the diagonal. Yutakayama’s now blocking my top row. Wow.
And look! Ishiura’s back after taking the first week off! He’s still technically got a chance. With the yokozunae out, none of the other leaders want to win this thing, though I’d put my money on Takayasu. His eyes must be as big as saucers right now. But I’m getting ahead of myself, aren’t I? Let’s get to the action…
Meisei (5-3) defeated Shohozan (0-8): Solid tachiai and a quick oshizumo bout. Meisei wins with…a pull. Who better to Meisei’s win assured Shohozan’s makekoshi record. Let’s move on, shall we? Oshidashi.
Ishiura (1-0-7) defeated Shimanoumi (4-4): No Juryo visitor today because Ishiura’s back. As Bruce mentioned, this would be a fresh hell for us mortals. However, rikishi age – and therefore heal – at a rate 10 times faster than us because of their sacred keiko. After the tachiai, Ishiura clawed at Shimanoumi with his left hand until he secured a solid grip. Once he achieved that grip, a quick yank on the mawashi rolled Shimanoumi down. Shitatedashinage
Ichinojo (5-3) defeated Kotoshoho (6-2): Kotoshoho had a quick, strong tachiai against Ichinojo and he backed the giant to the tawara. But Ichinojo reached around and grabbed the young colt. He had a solid left-hand grip on Kotoshoho’s mawashi and executed a nice throw. “Just like tossing ponies back home.” Uwatenage.
Kaisei (3-5) defeated Chiyotairyu (5-3): Kaisei powered through Chiyotairyu’s thrusts to force a yotsu belt battle. He quickly secured a morozashi and, with all his might, heaved Chiyotairyu back to the bales. The tawara helped Chiyotairyu offer some resistance but Kaisei’s solid gaburi worked Chiyotairyu over and out. Yorikiri.
Hoshoryu (4-4) defeated Kotoshogiku (2-3-3): Speaking of gaburi, Kotoshogiku is in no condition to even attempt his signature technique. Once Hoshoryu had a both hands latched on to Giku’s belt with a left-hand inside belt grip, Kotoshogiku was toast. As Hoshoryu eased the injured veteran back and out, Kotoshogiku regaled him with tales of, “That One Time I Beat Your Uncle.” “Listen here, sonny, and I’ll tell you of that time your uncle couldn’t throw me.” Yorikiri.
Sadanoumi (3-5) defeated Tobizaru (6-2): Tobizaru was desperate to keep Sadanoumi off his belt. When Sadanoumi got a grip with his right hand, Tobizaru spun around to force him to release it. Tobizaru tried a kick but Sadanoumi followed with a decisive shove. Tsukiotoshi
Kotoeko (4-4) defeated Tokushoryu (1-7): Tokushoryu did look tired as he brawled with Kotoeko. Each seemed to drain him. Once inside, Kotoeko pivoted and ushered Tokushoryu over the edge and into the salt box. Oshidashi.
Onosho (6-2) defeated Ryuden (3-5): Both men made an attempt to rearrange the face of their opponent, thrusting their hands at their opponent’s chin. But, oh, wow. Onosho’s nodowa was fatal. That right hand into Ryuden’s throat forced Ryuden to fall over backwards, hard. Oshitaoshi.
Aoiyama (4-4) defeated Enho (1-7): Aoiyama did not charge ahead at the tachiai. Instead, he stood up and shoved out to keep Enho off his belt. A few thrusts with that V-Twin Turbo launched Enho off-balance and off the dohyo. Tsukidashi.
Kiribayama (6-2) defeated Kagayaki (5-3): Kiribayama tried a pull. Kagayaki recovered well but as he brought his arms up to start beating Kiribayama for his insolence, Kiribayama used all his might to blast Kagayaki’s arms away. Now with Kagayaki off-balance and deep in Kiribayama’s side of the dohyo, Kiribayama drove forcefully into Kagayaki, forcing him back that last step and out. Oshidashi.
Wakatakakage (6-2) defeated Takarafuji (5-3): Wakatakakage tried an HNH but Takarafuji adapted well. “Son, I know a guy who did that better than you.” He kept driving his left elbow into Wakatakakage’s chin. Wakatakakage had enough of that and worked his way inside with both hands wrapped around Takarafuji. From this position, he forced Takarafuji up and charged forward. Takarafuji tried a last gasp throw at the edge but Wakatakakage forced him out. Yorikiri.
Takayasu (6-2) defeated Terutsuyoshi (2-6): Baloneium contained, for now. Terutsuyoshi knew that left hand would be dangerous so as Takayasu’s fingers wormed their way in, he just tried to take the whole arm. Takayasu then opted for an oshi battle and was going to make. He’s pretty good at those, too. He tried to smush Terutsuyoshi’s face and this propped Terutsuyoshi up, and then Takayasu tipped him forward onto his hands. Terutsuyoshi may have twisted his ankle. He limped back down to the shitakubeya. Hatakikomi.
Terunofuji (6-2) defeated Tamawashi (3-5): Terunofuji’s footwork in this bout was excellent. At the tachiai, he kept Tamawashi in front of him and weathered the storm as he advanced. At the bales, Tamawashi escapted to the left but Terunofuji pursued close behind. A few times Terunofuji came close to a belt grip. Not many can assert a yotsu position against Tamawashi. But Terunofuji powered through Tamawashi’s assault and shoved Tamawashi out. “I don’t need the belt, I’ll just grab your whole trunk.” Yorikiri.
Okinoumi (3-5) defeated Takanosho (4-4): Okinoumi is another of those guys who doesn’t need the belt to get a solid hold of his opponent and do his sumo. In a manner reminiscent of how he defeated Shodai, Okinoumi enveloped Takanosho with his arms and twisted to the right, forcing Takanosho down. Tsukiotoshi.
Hokutofuji (3-5) defeated Endo (3-5): Someone had to win, right? Hokutofuji was rather determined not to let Endo get a belt grip, pushing, time and time again to keep him off. Endo tried a pull but Hokutofuji wasn’t going to fall for it. He wasn’t advancing with enough momentum. When Endo did get his arms inside, Hokutofuji locked them in under his arm pits and would not let them go. He then tried to take a page from Kaiju and kimedashi walk Endo back and out. The bales offered Endo just enough resistance to keep him from going out. But Hokutofuji twisted his body down to the right, forcing Endo into the clay. Kotenage.
Shodai (6-2) defeated Myogiryu (3-5): Damn it, Shodai, don’t get into this habit. He pulled at the tachiai. His left hand came close to a disqualifying grip on Myogiryu’s top knot but he didn’t lock the fingers in. This forced Myogiryu off-balance and Shodai stepped in behind Myogiryu and forced him out. Maybe they should have called the hair pull to scare Shodai straight. Okuridashi.
Yutakayama (2-6) is kyujo. <note to see yesterday> Asanoyama (5-3) picked up the freebie win.
Daieisho (3-5) defeated Mitakeumi (4-4) : See, Shodai? See what pulling will do to your Ozeki hopes? See? Watch Mitakeumi in this bout. Tired of the absolute pounding he’s getting from blow after blow rained down by Daieisho, Mitakeumi chose to pull. Well, essentially “retreat” rather than “pull” because it wasn’t accompanied by a swipe at Daieisho’s head to try to force him off balance. Daieisho pursued, carefully, and forced Mitakeumi out. Oshidashi.
Tochinoshin (4-4) defeated Takakeisho (6-2): And we have a crazy race, folks. Turns out Tochinoshin doesn’t need the belt, either. A grip on the head works just fine. F’ing pulls. Who needs ‘em? This is how you execute. Tochinoshin didn’t pull. He met Takakeisho head on. But while Takakeisho blindly bulled forward at the tachiai, Tochinoshin worked his hand up behind Takakeisho’s head and forced him down, deflecting his attack to the side and shoving T-Rex into the dirt. He didn’t need to pull back 8 rassifrassin feet to execute this. Push down, get interview. Done. Hatakikomi.
What is this, the fucking Belmont? We’ve got a nine-horse race heading into the final week. Even Kiribayama’s up here in the lead. Onosho’s got a shot! Takayasu may just raise the cup, yet! We’ve got ourselves a Juryo-like free-for-all in Makuno-freaking-uchi. Asanoyama’s only one win back. Takarafuji is in this! This is blinking nuts! Will the field narrow before we get to the final turn? Join us tomorrow for more insanity. A little less coffee then, I promise.
At least someone out there will have a gem of a bingo card. With 9 guys in the lead, people will have possible yusho-winners all over the place. I think my best row is Ryuden, Ichinojo, Tamawashi, Okinoumi, Takarafuji. Shohozan and Tokushoryu have ganged up to block Shodai for me. Gee, thanks, guys!