Bouts From the Lower Divisions – Day 11

With all of the chaos in the top divisions, Makuuchi AND Juryo, it’s often nice to remember there’s a whole slew of other bouts among the junior divisions. Yes, I’m clutching at straws here but I need something to look forward to now that the Hakuho/Takayasu bout won’t happen. My man Kaisei is facing Juryo…my man Ikioi is facing Makushita…and as Uncle Sumo…しかし!

Jonokuchi

Herouth has been keeping us on top of the yusho races down here and Naruto Oyakata, the dashing former Kotooshu, has certainly gotten himself a bumper crop of youngsters dominating the Jonokuchi yusho. Marusho leads the division as he had his sixth bout last night, winning against Minami of Tatsunami beya. Sadly, I have not been able to find the bout.

As wrestlers from the same heya (or father) cannot face each other during the tournament until the playoff, schedulers can’t have Sakurai face-off against Motobayashi tonight and then have the winner battle Marusho.

Jonidan

Homarefuji has a great chance at winning the Jonidan yusho with a dominating win over Hitenryu. He sure has the poise and confidence of a sekitori, even just going through his prebout routine in this video from the Japan Sumo Channel. But when the time comes to put the fists to the ground, he nearly bowls Hitenryu straight over backwards.

One of the men he may need to face in the coming days is Adachi, on the right in the montage below, picking up his sixth win against Ooba.

Sandanme

In SandanmeI only have the end of Wakaichiro’s bout for us. With the oshidashi victory, Wakaichiro is 3-3 and will be fighting for his kachi-koshi.

Makushita

In Makushita, Hoshoryu faced Oguruma beya’s Nogami, both 3-2 coming in and fighting for kachi-koshi. Nogami engaged directly, and effectively, using that extra mass to drive Hoshoryu to the edge. Hoshoryu arrests their backward movement with his left foot on the bales but he is high and tries to reach over Nogami’s back with the right hand.

Nogami prefers a yotsu bout and locks the dragon up with both hands inside. Once that left hand came in and secured a belt grip, he pretty much lifted Hoshoryu up and out. Yoritaoshi. With the win, Nogami is looking to secure himself a spot in the Makushita joi.

Hoshoryu will need to win his next one to have any hope of snagging a vacant spot in Juryo. His opportunity may have slammed shut as Seiro has already locked up one slot and Irodori will be eyeing another. Seiro picked up that kachi koshi today against Kaisho. Kaisho went far too low, allowing Seiro time to grab the mawashi with his right hand as he backed away, finishing with an uwatenage. With the poll position at Ms1, Seiro’s promotion is a lock for picking up the position Akiseyama will leave behind.

Akua got a taste of Juryo last year and wants to return. Coming into today, he was a solid 5-0 and had his own designs on a coveted position in the makushita joi. However, he was shown the door by Tsurubayashi who used one of my favorite kimarite. This okuritaoshi had a shokkiri routine feel to it the way Akua tumbled out, head over heels, and Tsurubayashi’s right leg comes up…perfectly aimed to give him the old boot. But it’s probably a good thing for that restraint as the fall was a hard one.

And let us pause now and thank Herouth. :)

And then let’s thank her again for adding this about the Terunofuji/Roga bout. I swear I meant to do it. Cross my heart…

Thanks for covering for me!

But… but… how could you skip the Terunofuji vs. Roga bout!

Roga sure would have wished that Futagoyama oyakata had skipped it, though. His master gave him a public shaming on Twitter today for this bout.

Today Roga from my heya had a match with former Ozeki Terunofuji. Terunofuji’s physical fitness is still far from perfect, but Roga was utterly beaten, and his sumo was bad at that. Well, that’s Roga’s actual power at the moment. Guys who were in the same year in school with him are in the banzuke joi. It was pointless to have taken him with me for degeiko. If he keeps this up I have zero expectations of him.

Thank you, Herouth!

Video Of Wakaichiro’s Day 6 Win

Friday morning in Tokyo, Wakaichiro won his 3rd match of the Hatsu basho, defeating Fudano in a fast paced match that had the rikishi from Texas dominating for most of the bout. Compared to Kyushu, Wakaichiro is lower, strong, more confident and moving with purpose. He does get into a spot of trouble, but has the sumo sense to recover. With the win he improves to a healthy 3-0 record.

We expect him to return to action on day 8, and we will bring you all of the details once the fight schedule is published.

Wakaichiro Wins Day 1

Our favorite Musashigawa rikishi opened the new year with a most welcome win over Tochinoshima, to open the basho 1-0. Wakaichiro has been battling a number of physical problems around his right kneed and shoulder, and his performance has suffered the past 2 tournaments. In his day 1 match he looked stronger, more confident and more aggressive than ever. His sumo was smooth, efficient and powerful, and we hope it’s the shape of things to come.

Wakaichro Competes Day 1

Wakaichiro Day 8

In what his fans are hoping is rebound tournament, Texas sumotori Wakaichiro faces his first match early on day 1. The past two tournaments saw him finish with make-koshi records, as he struggled to overcome injuries and adapt to fighting with a bit more mass to his body. In spite of his losing records, his sumo has shown steady technique improvements, and many of his fans believe its simply a matter of time before aspects of his sumo begin to work in harmony, and produce a record equal to his potential.

Wakaichiro, ranked Jonidan 36 East, will face off against Jonidan 36 West: Long serving veteran Tochinoshima. Tochinoshima is a 31 year old rikishi from Kasugano stable who has participated in 77 basho, and has been ranked as high as Sandanme 8. He has been plagued with injuries since 2014, and has struggled to maintain ranking in Sandanme. He is at Jonidan 36 after a disappointing 1-6 record at Kyushu.

We will bring you news of the match as soon as we learn the results, and video once we can find it.