Wakaichiro Finishes Nagoya With A Win

Wakaichiro-Noodles

Texas sumotori Wakaichiro completed the Nagoya basho with his 4th win, earning his first kachi-koshi in Sandanme, and ensuring his place in that division for September’s Aki basho. Over the course of the past two weeks, Wakaichiro has shown significantly improved sumo, and overcame an early string of losses, to “win out” and ensure his promotion.

The team at Tachiai extend our congratulations for an excellent, hard fought tournament. Even when he was down 1-3, Wakaichiro rallied and pulled it off. We look forward to harder matches and tougher competition in September.

We will bring you video as soon as we can find it, his expression following the match is carefully restrained elation.

Wakaichiro day 14
Day 14 Match Photo – Shamelessly Stolen From The NSK Twitter Feed

Wakaichiro’s Final Nagoya Match – Day 14

Wakaichro nagoya Day 9

Texas sumotori Wakaichiro enters his final match with a 3-3 record, and the outcome of this last bout determines if he ends the tournament with a winning or losing record. His opponent on day 14 is Sandanme 99 Fudano, from Azumazeki heya. Fudano is a recent newcomer to sumo, who has been ranked as high as Sd95 in May of 2017.

A win would mean that Wakaichiro would stay in Sandanme for the Aki tournament in Tokyo, and a loss would signal a likely demotion to the top ranks of Jonidan. As with his prior matches, we will bring you news of the results as soon as we know them.

Wakaichiro Wins Day 11

Wakaichiro Day 11 Nagoya

Texas sumotori Wakaichiro won his day 11 match against Mitsumune. The match was a strictly osha-battle, with both contestants hurtling towards the northwest corner at the end. Wakaichiro showed some fine ring sense in aggressively stopping short of the tawara, while Mitsumune continued onward and out.

With this win, Wakaichiro improves to 3-3, with his final match deciding his make or kachi kochi. We expect this match to take place on day 13, before noon in Japan.

UPDATE – Video Below

Wakaichiro Match #6 – Day 11

Wakaichiro Tachiai

Our favorite Texas rikishi mounts the Nagoya dohyo just before noon on Wednesday for his 6th match of the basho, and a chance to rack up his 3rd win. His opponent on day 11 is Onomatsu heya’s Mitsumune. Mitsumune is young (18) and has only been in sumo since last November, this is his 5th basho. But he has been quickly climbing the ranks with consistent strong performance, scoring 5-2 records in each of his tournaments thus far.

As before, Tachiai will bring you results as soon as we know them, and video as soon as we can find it online.

Go Texas Sumo!

Wakaichiro Wins Day 9

Wakaichro nagoya Day 9

In a timely reversal of the trend, Texas sumotori Wakaichiro prevailed against Mienosato his day 9 match. Wakaichiro was more heavily bandaged than on any previous day, and its a bit of a concern that his right arm may have been injured in his endurance match on day 7. Wakaichiro had control of the match from the start, and quickly drove Mienosato to the east side and out.

With this win, Wakaichiro improves to 2-3 for Nagoya, with a kachi-koshi still possible. We will bring you video as soon as we can find it online.

Wakaichiro’s 5th Match – Day 9

Wakaichiro Nagoya

Entering day 9 with a 1-3 record, Wakaichiro is looking to reverse his fortune and pick up his second win of the Nagoya tournament. On Monday he faces Mienosato from Kasugano heya. Mienosato is a veteran with 45 tournaments to his name, though he has never ranked above Sandanme 40. As we have seen before, it will be the relative newcomer in Wakaichro going against long serving rikishi who for a sort of “skill barrier” between up and coming wrestlers and higher ranks. Mienosato seems especially keen to defeat his opponents with pull down / slap down techniques.

As always we will bring results as soon as we know them, and video as soon as we can find it.

Wakaichiro’s Day 7 Battle Royal (Video)

Thanks to Miselet, we have some video to discuss about Wakaichiro’s day 7 match. As I noted previously, Wakaichiro lost this match, but his sumo was a step change higher than what we had seen before.

Some things of note (breaking it down frame by frame). Wakaichiro cedes his chest to Kotorikuzan at the tachiai for a moment, but quickly applies a fierce nodawa and gets inside with his left hand, applying force to center mass. He takes Kotorikuzan to the bales and gives it everything he has, but Kotorikuzan will not go out. At 01:35 in the video you can see that he has Kotorikuzan bending against his effort, but Wakaichiro’s right foot is up on his toes.  This might be partially why he was not transmitting enough power to the clay to finish him.

The video is an excellent example of how far Wakaichro has come. His mechanics still have room for improvement. At the start of the match his footwork and his hand placement is outstanding. But in the heat of battle he gets a little sloppy. That is a function of experience. His instincts though, seem to be very good. Execution will come. Clearly toward the end, he’s getting tired. Stamina too will come in time. Plus its Nagoya and it’s bloody hot.

*Note – I did break this down frame by frame with screen grabs, but I think it was a bit over the top for some fans. So enjoy this summary.

Wakaichiro Loses Day 7

Wakaichiro Day 7 Nagoya

Wakaichiro lost his 4th match during day 7 action in Nagoya. This takes his overall record to 1-3. There were many items of note from this match. First and foremost this is some of the best lower division action I have ever seen. Wakaichiro fought like a man possessed. His sumo was tight, his oshi was focused center-mass, and he was relentless. Although he did not win, he has a lot to be proud of.

This is probably his best sumo, ever. Multiple times he had his opponent on the bales, but could not close the deal. I am sure he is disappointed, but I think the last 5% is going to come. I would guess that is the toughest match that Kotorikuzan has faced in a long time. Possibly ever.

I am going to do whatever I can to find video of this match, because it must be watched to be appreciated.

Wakaichro Competes Day 7

Wakaichiro nagoya Day 1

Texas sumotori Wakaichiro will be back on the Nagoya dohyo before noon on Saturday. He will be facing off against Sadogatake heya’s Kotorikuzan. Kotorikuzan has been in sumo since 2009, and is another Sandanme mainstay (37 tournaments). Wakaichiro is finding that the competition in Sandanme to be significantly harder than even the top end of Jonidan, and he will be working hard for every win. Both rikishi come into Saturday’s match with a 1-2 record.

As always we will bring you results as soon as we know them, and if we get luck and someone posts video, we will share that as well. Thus far video of Wakaichiro’s Nagoya matches has been hard to come by.

Go Texas Sumo!

Wakaichiro Loses Day 5

Wakaichiro Day 5 Nagoya

In late morning action in Nagoya, Wakaichiro lost match #3 of the Nagoya tournament to Kototora, dropping to 1-2 for the tournament. The notable aspect of the match was that Kototora looked to have had Wakaichiro beaten several times, just to see Wakaichiro escape and renew his attack. It’s also noted that Wakaichiro seemed to have quite a bit of tape on his right arm and right shoulder,and right knee today. Hopefully he is not injured to any great extent.

Wakaichiro Fights Day 5

Wakaichiro3

Wakaichiro is back in action on day 5 in Nagoya. Following his loss on day 3, he has a chance on Thursday to pick up another win, and improve to 2-1. His opponent will be Sandanme 95 East Kototora, from Sadogatake heya. Kototora has been ranking in Sandanme for most or the last two years, and should be considered a veteran of the division. This is the first time that Wakaichro has faced him in competition.

As always, we will bring you results as soon as we know them, and video should some every show up on the web (we still have not seen anything from his day 3 match).

Go Texas Sumo!

Wakaichiro Loses Day 3

Wakaichiro Nagoya Day 3

In action early Tuesday in Nagoya, Wakaichiro lost his second match of the tournament. He continues to display good form, but veteran Dewaazuma was able to get Wakaichiro off balance and finish him with a hatakikomi. With the loss, Wakaichiro drops to 1-1 after 2 matches.

We do not yet have video, but will share it as soon as it appears. We expect him to return to action day 5 or 6.

Video of Wakaichiro’s Day 1 Win

One of the highlights for early action on day 1 was Wakaichiro’s rematch against Kotosato. The two had faced off in the upper ranks of Jonidan in May, and now met again in Sandanme. In the prior match, Kotosato overpowered Wakaichiro, got inside from the tachiai and drove Wakaichiro out.

This time, in spite of another high tachiai, Wakaichiro prevailed. Kotosato pressed forward strongly from the start, and had Wakaichiro facing outside with his toes near the tawara. That could have been a fast loss for the Musashigawa rikishi, but he rallied and rolled left, neatly reversing and putting Kotosato’s heels on the bales.

I think this match is important in that it shows a new level of sumo skill for Wakaichiro, and he marks a victory over an opponent to dispatched him rather quickly last time

Wakaichiro Loses Day 13

Texas rikishi Wakaichiro lost his final match of the Haru basho on day 13 to Fujitaisei. His final performance was 3 wins, 4 losses for a make-koshi. Chances are quite high that he will return to Jonidan for Natsu in May in Tokyo. I have noticed an interesting pattern to Wakaichiro’s performance: his Tokyo tournament performance is typically a step above what he turns in when he is on the road, so I am going to guess he will have a strong showing in May.

It’s also worth noting the rather sturdy bandage securing his right elbow, and the tape on his right knee, which may indicate an injury that limits his sumo. So we will wish him well, and eagerly wait his return to the dohyo in 6 weeks, hopefully renewed, healed up and ready to win.

Wakaichiro Wins Day 12

In one of the most chaotic and unpredictable matches of his short career, Wakaichiro won on day 12 over his opponent Hokutohomare. This brings the rikishi from Texas to 3-3 for the Osaka tournament. The final match, which will decide if Wakaichiro is promoted or demoted, will take place on Thursday, Haru day 13. His opponent is 23-year-old Fujitaisei of Fujishima-beya, a Sandanme regular who is also hoping to get his kachi-koshi.