Nagoya Day 10 Highlights

Act 2 starts with fireworks as we see one of the leaders take a loss, two of the Ozeki hopefuls take losses, and some high energy / high creativity sumo in nearly every match. The heat is crushing everyone this summer in Japan, but its fantastic to see the rikishi corps fight with everything they have for their wins. For those looking for new Ozeki to be minted following the tournament, the next 4 days are where the prove their merit or go down hard trying. Fingers crossed at least one of them makes it.

Highlight Matches

Shonannoumi defeats Bushozan – A super sweaty Shonannoumi absorbs Bushozan’s tachiai from a high stance, and immediately thrusts him down. They listed the kimarite as uwatedashinage, but that looked like a tsukiotoshi to me. Ah well. Simple but effective and Shonannoumi is now one win away from kachi-koshi at 7-3. For Bushozan, that is loss #8 and he is make-koshi.

Gonoyama defeats Takarafuji – Takarafuji takes his second consecutive loss as Gonoyama stops his losing streak at 4. I think it came down to Takarafuji trying to change up his grip, and leaving himself open to Gonoyama’s attacks center-mass. Both end the day 6-4.

Aoiyama defeats Kotoshoho – Kotoshoho allowed his initial stance to be disrupted by Aoiyama’s immediate pull attempt after the tachiai. Caught without a foot in front to steady himself against the pull, he stumbled forward and out. Aoiyama picks up the white star and is now 4-6.

Endo defeats Chiyoshoma – Chiyoshoma’s plan seems to have centered around a strong pull with the left hand on the second step. It brought Endo forward, but also brought him full force into Chiyoshoma’s chest. A quick shove followed, and Chiyoshoma was out. Endo now kachi-koshi at 8-2 and escapes any peril he might have been in ranked so far down the banzuke.

Hakuoho defeats Kotoeko – In this first ever match, I am quite sure Kotoeko was not quite sure what to expect from Hakuoho. There seems to have been an assumption that he might be able to plant a foot and set up some kind of defense to allow himself to get a grip. Instead Hakuoho goes in hard, breaks Kotoeko’s stance and butsugari’s his shapely behind right out of the ring. Hakuoho now 7-3. Note to future Hakuoho opponents, he has a lot of power forward.

Ryuden defeats Myogiryu – Ryuden executes an outstanding impersonation of Terunofuji with that double arm lock / kimidashi hold, and even finishes in one of Terunofuji’s preferred moves, the kotenage. Myogiryu takes a tumble, and Ryuden is now 6-4.

Takanosho defeats Daishoho – Takanosho has now won 5 straight matches, and this is the rally I am here for sumo fans. This guy has a lot of headroom if he’s healthy, and I pray he can stay healthy for a while now. The far more massive Daishoho made him work for it, and I really liked his defensive stance and that finishing move looked like it won the match by dropping Takanosho on the clay. But a monoii ensued and a rematch was declared. The second run – Daishoho dials up the power at the tachiai, but the two settle into almost the exact same grip and stance as the first try. But this time Takanosho has far better foot placement, and is able to drive Daishoho out three steps later. Takanosho earns his star today and is 5-5.

Tsurugisho defeats Sadanoumi – My compliments to Tsurugisho, for finding a way to defeat someone while barley having to move your feet. It was a rapid push – pull – turn – toss that let him stay more or less in the same place and put Sadanoumi out of the ring. Sadanoumi now 2-8 and make-koshi while Tsurugisho improves to 3-7.

Kinbozan defeats Takayasu – As a long suffering Takayasu fan, it’s clear the man is back to being injured. Maybe he never stopped, but his big power sumo is nowhere to be found right now. Kinbozan deflects or dodges at the tachiai, gets enough of a hand on Takayasu to escort him past and then shoves him out. Simply, kind of ugly, but a win. Kinbozan is 6-4 and Takayasu looks angry.

Hokutofuji defeats Tamawashi – One of the big matches of the day, Hokutofuji successfully defends his spot at the front of the yusho race. I had been hoping for much more brutal oshizumo today, but Tamawashi lost traction and took a fall. They called it oshitaoshi, but yeah.. ok. Hokutofuji takes the win and is 9-1.

Nishikifuji defeats Oho – Oho tries a thrust-thrust-pull combo a couple of times in a row. It nearly works the first time, and after that it was just slop. With no defensive sumo coming from Oho, Nishikifuji finds center mass and pushes with everything he can land. The result was a tsukidashi that sent Oho off to visit Nishikigi waiting ring side. Nishikifuji improves to 5-5.

Shodai defeats Hokuseiho – I am really glad to see Shodai attempt a “wall of daikon” against Hokuseiho, because I was curious if it would work. Short answer – I bet it could be made to work, but it came up a bit short today. Hokuseiho tossed Shodai from the ring, but rather than a victory, there was a monoii. The shimpan ruled that Hokuseiho’s size 18 gunboats were over the tawara, and the win went to Shodai. Frankly, I did not see it, and they should have had them fight it again. Both end the day 4-6.

Nishikigi defeats Meisei – Meisei brought a lot of power and skill into the match today, and twice he nearly had Nishikigi ready to fall. But that makikae from Nishikigi instantly set up the grip that he used to yoritaoshi Meisei for a 9th win. Wow, the Nishikigi magical mystery tour rolls on at 9-1.

Midorifuji defeats Tobizaru – In the preview, we had guessed that we would get an even match between these two high mobility, rapid combo throwing rikishi, and they really poured it on. Midorifuji eventually found a clear lane to center mass, and finished Tobizaru three steps later. Excellent fight, and Midorifuji really needed that win. He is now 3-7.

Mitakeumi defeats Abi – Mitakeumi rides out the initial volley of Abi-zumo, closes the gap and uses a body hold to turn Abi around and walk him out. Ah, I miss Ozeki Mitakeumi. Already make-koshi, Mitakeumi improves to 2-8.

Onosho defeats Wakamotoharu – Wakamotoharu’s Ozeki bid takes a torpedo amidships as Onosho gets the right conditions to bring his full sumo power to bare. This was a shortcoming of Wakamotoharu’s sumo or just his approach to today. He left his shoulders and hips square to Onosho at both the tachiai, and the first step, allowing Onosho to go to full power forward immediately, and connect that power through Wakamotoharu’s body into the clay. Two steps later, Wakamotoharu is off the dohyo and into the front row. Onosho now 5-5.

Daieisho defeats Hiradoumi – I know he lost, but damn sir, look at Hiradoumi’s sumo today. He brings the fire with a tachiai that may have knocked a filling loose, then he ramps up the pressure into a flurry of Daieisho’s favorite attacks. Does Hiradoumi go down? Oh hell no! He keeps pressing forward into Daieisho, who finally resorts to a grab, spin and toss to win by tsukiotoshi. Brilliant match, and I wish I could give Hiradoumi some kind of award for that. Daieisho kachi-koshi at 8-2, and he keep his Ozeki dreams alive.

Kotonowaka defeats Hoshoryu – Another Ozeki hopeful takes a knock as Kotonowaka reverses the trend and beats Hoshoryu for the first time in 10 matches (since 2020!). Kotonowaka was more potent and genki today than we have seen for some time, and he bruted his way to owning control of the match in the opening seconds. Hoshoryu found himself without a working grip, and attempted a makikae, only to find himself at the bales and without a way to counter. Kotonowaka now 6-4 by oshidashi.

Kirishima defeats Ura – Not sure what Ura tweaked during this match, but he is clearly not ok when it ends. Rather than a quick attack on some unexpected vector, Ura fights Kirishima using solid fundamentals mixed with his gift of agility and creativity. Respect to Kirishima for riding out some of Ura’s combos that would have upended most other rikishi, and sticking it out to get the yorikiri. Both end the day 4-6.

10 thoughts on “Nagoya Day 10 Highlights

  1. Thanks for an excellent recap – I think you miswrote that Shodai and Hokuseiho ended at 4-4 for today. Official records say 4-6.

  2. I didn’t see Hokuseiho step out in real time but in the replay it was clear. The step-out (big toe) was earlier, not in the final move. Hokuseiho stepped over the tawara, toe touched, pulled his foot back inside and then appeared to win the bout.

      • In any case, they couldn’t have called a redo, since that’s only for when they step out or land simultaneously. Either Hokuseiho’s toe touched (it did) and he lost, or it didn’t and Shodai was out first. Even in cases where they’re not sure if someone stepped out or touched a hand down early or not, torinaoshi is off the table and a call has to be made one way or the other.

  3. The move of the day came down in Juryo when 5’6″, 245 lb. Kiho lifted 6’1″, 412 lb. Daiamami clean off the clay. Wow!!!

      • Kiho is like the product of some kind of arcane experiments in the Miyagino underground Rikishi lab to produce an amalgam of Ishiura and Enho. Tiny, nimble, but with absolutely freakish core strength that lets him do things you usually have to be from Georgia to pull off.

  4. I was wrong about Hokuseiho. Now, I feel sorry for him, that being so tall, his height seems to be hampering his Sumo.

    Was Ura as he appeared to be crying after his defeat. I felt so bad for him. He tried so hard.


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