Later this weekend, the banzuke for the Natsu basho in Tokyo will be released for all to enjoy. If you want a master analysis on how the May ranking sheet might turn out, do check out lksumo’s predictions.
The basho itself is just 2 weeks away now, and it should be a heck of a battle for 15 days. I am excited to see Mitakeumi take the top Ozeki slot for the first time, and to see Wakatakakage build on his 12-3 result in March to try to string together a bid to become the 4th Ozeki. As far fetched as that may seem, I think that if he can maintain consistency for the next 2 tournaments (maybe 3), he has a solid shot at assuming sumo’s second highest rank.
For those of you who may have missed it, the NSK streamed one of their joint practice sessions on YouTube, and the quality was actually not that bad for a change. If you missed it, its nearly 3 glorious hours of sumo practice –
The rikishi who never seem to attend these were not in attendance, and I wonder if the NSK is concerned that none of their Ozeki showed up. But you know who showed up, and seemed to really fight it out – Nishikigi. This guy just loves sumo, and seems to never miss a chance to hone his craft.
I also note that Kiribayama and Hoshoryu were there, and seemed driven to tear each other up. Of course Takayasu was holding court, and always does pretty well in practice. I just wish he could carry that kind of dominance into week 2.
Some fine matches, so if you are so inclined, pour yourself a nice drink, park it on the sofa and let the sumo run.