Absent Takakeisho will be kadoban at Aki, needing 8+ wins to save his rank. To avoid the same fate, shin-Ozeki Kirishima (5-4-2) needs to win 3 of his final 4 bouts. S1e Hoshoryu (9-2) and S1w Daieisho (8-3) each need 3 more wins to reach the nominal Ozeki promotion target of 33 wins over 3 basho, while S2w Wakamotoharu (8-3) has to win out.
All three Sekiwake have done enough to at least hold their ranks, meaning that the only way for Sekiwake slots to open is via Ozeki promotion. But we might be looking for at least one new Komusubi—K1e Kotonowaka (7-4) only needs one more win to return, but K1w Abi (4-7) must win out. Surprise yusho race leader M1e Nishikigi (10-1) is a lock to make his san’yaku debut at Aki. If more than one slot needs to be filled, the best contenders are Tobizaru, Hokutofuji, Shodai, and Onosho.
Makuuchi Men in Danger
Absent M12w Wakatakakage will drop to Juryo. M16w Bushozan (3-8) must win out to avoid joining him. The other endangered incumbents are M17e Aoiyama (5-6), who needs 3 more wins for safety, followed by M14e Daishoho (4-7), M13w Kotoshoho (4-7), and M11w Tsurugisho (3-8), who need two apiece, and M8e Sadanoumi (2-9), who needs one.
Juryo Promotion Contenders
Top-ranked J1e Kagayaki (8-3) has earned an immediate return to the top division, taking the spot vacated by Wakatakakage. J1w Atamifuji (8-3) should be back after 4 basho in the second division, unless there is absolutely no room. The rest of the contenders need wins, as well as losses by the endangered incumbents; in rough order, they are J5e Tamashoho (8-3), J2e Roga (6-5), J2w Mitoryu (6-5), J5w Kitanowaka (7-4), and yusho race leader and former top division man J9w Tomokaze (9-2), who is at the high water mark of his long journey back after the horrific leg injury he suffered almost 4 years ago.
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