It has come to my attention that there is a rift among the Sumo & Stogies commentators regarding a man of smoke and mirrors…Kaio. Let me say for the record that if the acting in his bouts was better, I might fall for it and support the Ole Grey Mare to hang in there for one more Fukuoka Derby. But when “future Japanese hopefuls” like Kotoshogiku and Tochiozan fall with just taps on the back, it should leave a bitter taste in one’s mouth…good thing I always have a shot glass and a bottle of bourbon nearby to rid that bitter taste—today was one day I really needed it, and that’s before the sumo even started!
Week Two, Day 11, and time to start separating the boys from the Yokozuna.
Toyonoshima (9-1) took on Okinoumi (6-4) in the opening dance between the two. At the tachiai the two met more on Oki’s side of the ring, but Toyo eventually circles to the right without a grip. With Okinoumi shoving Toyo back to the bales, Oki bent a bit too low and Toyo put a hand on his right arm and elbow to throw down the handsome devil for his tenth win, maintaining a share of the lead, and pretty much gift-wrapping his technique and/or fighting spirit prize(s).
…and then if anything, I enjoyed seeing the hair on an ass mole lose twice today. Personally, that alone made up for a terrible day!
Takekaze (4-6) vs. Kaio (9-1) Takekaze moseyed a bit to the right from the initial charge with some earnest slaps and a pull down attempt which caused Kaio to lose balance but in some strange turn of events Take continued pushing Kaio who appeared to be galloping away. As Take pushed at the horses ass, the Akitan *slipped* and fell behind Kaio, causing Kaio to fall on top of him, slap-stick style. I’m not sure which is worse, to admit it was acting (which was horrible), or admit that it was real (which would be equally horrible). Pitiful stuff from both men, but we all know Kaio has a lot of balls to scratch after this basho.
Yoshikaze (5-5) vs. Baruto (9-1) Surprisingly, a soft tachiai from Yoshikaze, with Yoshi just wrapping up into Bart’s arms. Bart locked up Yoshi’s left arm and without any belt grip just walked him to the bales. Easy win for the Estonian, who faces a dumpy Tamanoshima tomorrow.
Hakuho (9-1) vs. Kakuryu (5-5). Head-to-head, Hakuho has a slight 15-0 lead. One sided tachiai with Hakuho locking up to Kakuryu who was moving in slo-mo and any defensive techniques weren’t even attempted. Hakuho just moved forward and yorikiri-ed the junior Mongol out of the ring.
So, after Day 11, the one-loss club of men remains unchanged…and then there were four.
Never thought a Virgil Valentine report could be so concise? Come back mañana to see how largo es de Gama!