We open today with four men in the lead and six chasing. Even better news, Kirishima is already kachi-koshi and both Takakeisho and Hoshoryu are one-win away. We’ve been used to having only one Ozeki or kadoban Ozeki for so long, it’s like we can focus on other drama, for once.
- 2敗: Kirishima, Kotonowaka, Atamifuji, Ichiyamamoto
- 3敗: Takakeisho, Hoshoryu, Midorifuji, Ryuden, Hiradoumi, Churanoumi
This is still quite an open contest with contenders up-and-down the banzuke. Hopefully today will offer a bit more clarity once the action is complete.
Nishikifuji (4-7) defeated Tomokaze (6-5). Tomokaze was stuck in rewind. Nishikifuji pressed forward easily to pick up the win. Oshidashi.
Tsurugisho (6-5) defeated Takarafuji (3-8). Takarafuji showed the initiative and drove forward but Tsurugisho rotated at the edge. Takarafuji resisted desperately but Tsurugisho increased the pressure, forcing Takarafuji to the floor. Valiant effort from both men. Yoritaoshi.
Sadanoumi (6-5) defeated Kitanowaka (4-7). Kitanowaka spun Sadanoumi around but Sadanoumi stayed in and regained position in the center of the ring. Sadanoumi pulled up and drove forward with all his might, forcing Kitanowaka to the ground over the tawara. Yoritaoshi.
Sadanoumi will face the resurgent Tsurugisho on Day 12. Seriously, how did he get to be 6-5?
Mitakeumi (7-4) defeated Roga (3-8). Roga slapped Mitakeumi at the tachiai. I don’t think that was wise. Enraged, Mitakeumi plowed forward and drove Roga out. Lesson: if you want to be make-koshi, slap a former Ozeki. Yorikiri.
Atamifuji (9-2) defeated Churanoumi (7-4). Locked-in, full steam ahead. Power sumo from Atamifuji. Oshidashi.
Endo (3-8) defeated Tohakuryu (3-8). Endo kept his legs churning forward and Tohakuryu kept his legs churning in reverse. Thankfully, forward-facing sumo won today. Oshidashi.
Endo will face Kitanowaka tomorrow. Tohakuryu will fight the Juryo visitor, Shimazuumi.
Tamawashi (7-4) defeated Kinbozan (6-5). Tamawashi grabbed Kinbozan’s face and wrenched him forward. Now behind his opponent, Tamawashi pushed Kinbozan out from behind. Okuridashi.
Kinbozan will fight Mitakeumi. Mitakeumi is seeking his kachi-koshi but Kinbozan holds a 2-0 edge in this rivalry.
Hokuseiho (5-6) defeated Oho (6-5). Again, Hokuseiho wrapped up his opponent in a double-over arm kimedashi-style grip, granting Oho a double-handed inside morozashi. Oho then used his morozashi and pressed forward. At the edge, though, Hokuseiho pivoted and dragged Oho down by the arm. Slick. Kotenage.
Hokuseiho will fight Roga; Oho will face Tamawashi, which should be interesting.
Midorifuji (8-3) defeated Hiradoumi (7-4). Midorifuji kachi-koshi. Midorifuji wrapped up Hiradoumi with a double-inside grip and pressed forward like Oho. Like Hokuseiho, Hiradoumi pivoted at the edge. But Midorifuji was ready, kept Hiradoumi centered, and pushed him out. Oshidashi.
Hiradoumi will fight Churanoumi with kachi-koshi on the line. He my have dodged a bullet with this loss. Churanoumi vs Daieisho…who would you rather fight?
Myogiryu (4-7) defeated Onosho (2-9). Myogiryu hit Onosho with a nodowa. Onosho raised his hands and slapped Myogiryu and unleashed his own nodowa. But Myogiryu wrenched him forward by pulling on his right arm. Hikiotoshi.
Tomorrow, these guys get a pair of May-December Isegahama stablemates from Aomori. Myogiryu will take on Takarafuji and Onosho will fight Nishikifuji.
Ryuden (8-3) defeated Nishikigi (6-5). Ryuden charged forward too early. Matta and reset. After the tachiai Ryuden quickly secured his left-hand inside grip and pressed forward, always seeking a hold with his right arm, as well. Nishikigi resisted for a while but was unable to get relief as Ryuden continued to press forward, forcing Nishikigi out. Yorikiri.
Takanosho (5-6) kyujo. Gonoyama (5-6) fusen win.
Takayasu (7-4) defeated Shonannoumi (6-5). Takayasu locked on with a right-hand outside grip, his left wrapped just inside Shonannoumi’s right armpit. He pivoted and overpowered Shonannoumi, forcing him over the edge. Yorikiri.
Takayasu will face Ryuden. This will be a fun one to watch. Shonannoumi will fight Tomokaze.
Tobizaru (5-6) defeated Ura (4-7). Ura pulled and tried to slap Tobizaru down but Tobizaru drove forward and forced Ura down at the edge. Oshitaoshi.
Tobizaru will face Gonoyama.
Hokutofuji (3-8) defeated Meisei (3-8). Hokutofuji pressed Meisei backwards but Meisei countered by pulling Hokutofuji forward by his arm. Hokutofuji recovered, chased Meisei, wrapped him up and forced him over the bales. Yorikiri.
Abi (4-7) defeated Shodai (5-6). Abi-zumo quickly dispatched Shodai. Oshidashi.
Abi will face Meisei; Shodai will take on Ura.
Daieisho (7-4) defeated Ichiyamamoto (8-3). Ichiyamamoto pressed forward hard into Daieisho. He was pitched a bit too far forward so Daieisho used a slight sidestep to pull him forward and down. Hikiotoshi.
Daieisho is the Kyokai’s clean-up man. After handing Ichiyamamoto a dose of reality, he will be paired with high-flying Midorifuji. Ichiyamamoto will have another tough bout with Nishikigi.
Kotonowaka (9-2) defeated Takakeisho (7-4). Kotonowaka reached behind Takakeisho, stepped to the side, and pulled him forward. From there, he was fully behind T-Rex so, it was a simple push to send Takakeisho packing. Okuridashi. The rope run is dead. Long live the Ozeki Run!
Hoshoryu (8-3) defeated Asanoyama (1-3-7). Asanoyama tried to rotate and throw Hoshoryu with his over-arm right-hand grip (uwatenage) but Hoshoryu countered with his right hand inside, throwing Asanoyama to the ground and landing on top. Shitatenage.
For an early dinner, Hoshoryu is being fed Atamifuji. Or is that the other way ’round? Yusho race implications there. A Hoshoryu win will have both men in the chase group. An Atamifuji win, on the other hand, will mean a two-man lead with the winner of Kirishima/Kotonowaka. Oh, and umm…Asanoyama will take on Hokutofuji. That should be interesting, too. Umm…yeah.
Kirishima (9-2) defeated Wakamotoharu (4-7). Wakamotoharu resisted at the bales for a while but Kirishima did not relent. Yorikiri.
Kirishima will fight Kotonowaka in a bout with not only yusho implications but also Kotonowaka’s promotion hopes hanging in the balance. Wakamotoharu must win out to preserve his sekiwake status. First on that quest, Takakeisho seeking kachi-koshi. Oof.
From a 10-man leaderboard at the start of today’s action, we’re down to 7. There will be more attrition tomorrow with head-to-head action among four of our leaders while the other three are moved up to fight other high-ranked opponents.
- 2敗: Kirishima, Kotonowaka, Atamifuji
- 3敗: Hoshoryu, Midorifuji, Ryuden, Ichiyamamoto
Hoshoryu got his kachi-koshi. Two wins in these closing days, and he’ll get 10. Takakeisho still needs one more win in the final four days to be kachi-koshi and still even has an okay chance at ending up with double-digits.
Unfortunately, Takanosho has joined Kotoeko on the couch, watching from home. With five wins, even if he doesn’t return, he’s still positioned to be Maegashira 10 or 11 in January. Kotoeko, on the other hand, is looking at demotion to Juryo.