Haru 2022: Jonokuchi Match Day 3

My apologies for bringing you an abbreviated, and late, Match Day 3 summary. I was at a school event so, unfortunately, it couldn’t be helped. The sad thing is, there wasn’t a whole lot of action worthy of the term, “highlight” either.

In today’s video I’ve got one Jonokuchi bout for the yusho race, the one between Hanafusa and Kotokenryu. Kotokenryu is a Sadogatake stablemate of Kototebakari, thus those two will not face each other during regulation. With this nice win over Hanafusa, he jumps into the yusho picture. Kotokenryu had not faced very stiff competition in previous match days so this was his first real action.

In the other yusho bouts, Kototebakari steamrolled his opponent, Shishimaru. And Mihonoumi improved to 3-0 against the steadily improving Daitenshin, who looks good to escape Jonidan in this, his fifth basho.

Among the one-loss chase group, Daiseizan shoved the much lighter Matsuzawa clear off the dohyo while Wakanosho got in a lot of tsuppari practice against Satsumasho. With an odd number of 3-0 wrestlers in the lower divisions, Mihonoumi will likely face an undefeated wrestler from Jonidan.

As I mentioned, the video has the Hanafusa/Kotokenryu bout and I also included a couple of Match Day 3 bouts from wrestlers who had been mentioned here when they were in Jonokuchi. Raiho faced off against Shunrai while Shikihide’s Mogamizakura looks to move on up from Jonidan.

Kyushu 2021: Jonokuchi Match Day 6

In the matchup of Jonokuchi’s unbeaten, Inoue’s experience dominated the young Chiyoshishi. After several solid slaps at the tachiai, both men latched onto each others’ belts in a bit of a surprising change of pace for Inoue. Inoue powered through Chiyoshishi as the young lion backed and circled around the ring. However, Inoue pursued swiftly and forced Chiyoshishi down, yoritaoshi. As the lion went down, he let out a roar…which sounded suspiciously like an F-bomb to me. Hear for yourself in the clip below. I hope you enjoy a little chuckle.

This is a surprising shift for Inoue as it’s only the third yoritaoshi win of his career as he favors an oshi-tsuki style in an effort to set up a slapdown. The most common kimarite among his wins hatakikomi. While he has won more than 20 bouts using oshidashi, he’s won 28 bouts via slapdown. It’s still too early in Chiyoshishi’s career to pin down his style but I will need to keep an eye on Inoue and his rise back up the banzuke. It will be helpful if he has another effective tool in the toolbox.

Though Inoue won his bout and is in sole possession of the lead, he must win his next bout to win the yusho outright. If he loses, the yusho will come down to a playoff. His next bout will likely be against the winner of the Kawamura/Raiho bout. Chiyoshishi has already defeated both, so he will likely face the winner of the Goseiryu/Wakaonehara fight.

Raiho took no chances against Kawamura, pulling a henka, and then spinning poor Kawamura clear off the dohyo with the final shove delivered from behind, okuridashi. The athleticism of Raiho against the experience and power of Inoue will be a fitting highlight bout on Day 13 (probably).

Goseiryu forced Wakaonehara to the side with a powerful right-hand at the initial charge. He quickly grabbed Wakaonehara and yanked him down for the hikiotoshi win. Goseiryu will thus probably be paired with Chiyoshishi with the winner having a shot at a three-way playoff with Raiho and Inoue, if Raiho wins. That playoff would be fought on senshuraku.