The Jungyo is nearly over. In a few hours, the last event – after a few days of hiatus – is going to take place at Tokyo’s KITTE mall, to be shortly followed by the banzuke announcement and all that come with them.
I’ll keep on writing a few Jungyo reports as my time allows, though, because the basho is still a long way away, and because some of you like reading them, it seems. But I can’t in honesty call them “Newsreels” anymore, because, well, the news are a bit old.
Today I’ll cover the two events that took place on August 14 and 15 at Aomori prefecture. These are days 16 and 17 of the Jungyo. The events at Aomori marked a departure of the Juryo rikishi – with the exception of Kyokutaisei and Ichiyamamoto, who are Hokkaido men and expected in the Hokkaido events. Also, Takagenji, the upper-ranking Taka Twin, has joined the Jungyo after being kyujo for its first part, just as his twin brother in Juryo has left it.
Before we go on with the description of the day, here is an update on the state of injuries and returns.
First, on this, day 12, Tochiozan got a nasty cut above his eye and was off the listings for four days, with Aoiyama filling in for him day 12 (it’s customary to have a rikishi do two bouts when something like that happens in Jungyo – there is no fusensho). He was back Day 16.
Other than that, we have two men returning from kyujo. One is Ozeki Tochinoshin, back since day 14, whose state is not really clear. His oyakata says his shoulder is fine, but his knee is still bad, but he is participating in the bouts and even winning them convincingly.
The other is Takagenji – a bit lower profile, admittedly – who joined the Jungyo day 16. That is, just as his big brother Takanofuji-yoshitoshi left it, together with the rest of Juryo.
Indeed, for the Juryo rikishi (and their tsukebito), the Jungyo is over after just 15 days of activity. That is, with the exception of Kyokutaisei and Ichiyamamoto, who are sticking around, because there is an odd number of Makuuchi rikishi at the moment. And of course, the two are Hokkaido men, and the Jungyo is heading up north.
So at least for the Juryo men, the Jungyo workload has been eased considerably. Those of us who wished the Jungyo to be shortened may want to follow up and see if this has any beneficial health effects compared to Makuuchi rikishi.
We have a short one for you today. The Jungyo is back in Saitama, which means these guys are once again in the spotlight:
“Hey, hey, hey, wait a second! What about me?!”
Yes, Abi, you’re a home boy, too. Now stop obscuring the other ones.
Not many visuals from the sidelines today, except Chiyoshoma, quietly doing his shiko in the hanamichi while others are practicing on the dohyo:
The practice on the dohyo includes some attention to Wakamotoharu, who has been very popular with the upper echelon this Jungyo:
Can’t say whether that’s a full fledged kawaigari or just plain butsukari. Meisei is also getting some quasi-Ozeki attention. But in his case, it’s pretty clear that when you look like this from the front:
And like this from the back:
…it’s kawaigari. Tochinoshin is making good use of his last days at Ozeki.
Practice bouts: Shimanoumi-Wakatakakage, Endo-Sadanoumi (with a bit of Yokozuna shiko at the end):
Actually, the more interesting san-ban is taking place away from the dohyo. Kotoshogiku and Toyonoshima are having at it in the corner:
Enho – we can’t do without Enho in any report – has finished his practice and wants to go get a shower, when all of a sudden, a team of hoodlums gangs up on him:
“Shortstuff, meet Yuki. He is my VP of Beating People To Pulp”
“Now, for some reason it looks like you think I was born yesterday, but I was not.”
“So I can’t get you to see reason? OK, Yuki, you have a go at making him see reason”
Poor pixie… Got in trouble with the Tamawashi-gumi.
I have absolutely nil material from the afternoon part of this event, sorry. All I have is Hokutofuji serenely having his head shampooed.
Rikishi don’t wash their hair every day, and when they do, it’s basically done with car-mechanic-grade grease remover, because the suki-abura used for their hairstyles is pretty much like having a head full of butter.
So I bid you farewell with our pin-up of the day, Tsukahara, from Kasugano beya, who is also a Saitama home boy: