You stumbled upon Day 7, have you? Mark ‘Spittlemaster’ Schilling joined Ross ‘Pancake Time’ Mihara in the distant NHK comfort booth for some gum-flapping while I chose to perfekt my Virgil Valentine’s Ole Irish Coffee in order to keep warm on this boner-killing cold day in northern Tohoku.
I bring you the Greatest Hits of Day 7…
Down in Triple AAA, WJ10 Masuraumi (1-5) took on funny man WJ6 Takamisakari (4-2). Ringo came out ablazing at the tachiai, but more out of control than anything with arms flinging about in positions you see only in orgies. Masu was moved back and turned on…then turned to the side. Ringo looked to be in the receiving end of a Ned Beatty, but Masu lost his balance, and the Ringo tip-toed the rice-bales, and stealthily slipped to the side as well, slap-assing his opponent out-da-ring okuridashi-style. Don’t snip that knot just yet! Ringo shows he’s got more gas in the tank and just three wins shy of an appearance in Osaka in March.
WM14 Sagatsukasa (3-3) vs. WM10 Gagamaru (4-2): Saggypants inside quick at the tachiai, but Gaga dudn’t give right away, simply taking the thrusts and cautious of the pull-down. Saggypants tried to find a way to work to the side, but Gaga stayed straight on his opponent, slow and steady as to not lose his balance. Unusually good footwork by the Georgian, not lunging around, but rather focusing on being squared up with the little Squirt. When Saggy slowed down and near the rice bales, Gaga took him out with a frontal push down. Lord Gaga improves from last basho’s dismal 2-13 already with a 5-2.
WM7 Aoiyama (1-5) vs. WM6 Kyokutenho (3-3): Aoi was low at tachiai, just as he said he’d do before the bout today. Low, but way too low. The elder Mongol did nothing but slipped to the right after impact, and Aoi tumbled down with a thrust down loss. Aoiyama falls to 1-6, a classic sophomore jinx record. The Elder keeping decent with a 4-3.
Let us skip down to the Ozeki family, where action started with EO Baruto (6-0) vs. ES Kakuryu (5-1). Bart lead the head-to-head 14-7, but the Kak has been looking good this basho. Things started with a very uncharacteristic bout by both rikishi. Bart came out a-blazin’, and the Kak was nowhere. Bart came in close at the tachai, right-hand firm on the belt and easy, quick drive forward. Force-out win for Bart, whose 7-0 of all things. The Kak is a respectable 5-2.
WK Wakakoyu (0-6) vs. WO Kisenosato (5-1): Wakakoyu went down in a bout with YAOCHO written all over it. This was a hybrid of ballet and pro-wrestling, with not an ounce of sumo. Kisenosato never moved a foot. Never. Wakakoyu drove into Kisenosato, then stepped to the left while leaning forwards and into thin air he went. Kissy was able to work in a hand on his elbow before he went down so the judges called it a thrustdown. Pathetic all around.
WM2 Goeido (1-5) vs. WO Harumafuji (5-1): head-to-head goes 10-5 in the Mongol’s favor, including that unforgettable rear-lifting bodyslam back in 2007. Haruma reached for a deep left-hand outside, and gradually supplemented it with a deep right-hand inside, but Goeido was less focused on grips and more on putting his opponent on the ground. Trying leg-trips, trying makikae, and everything else, Goeido finally won with a beautifully achieved under-arm throw. Haruma falls to 5-2 while Goeido has two Ozeki scalps, which happen to be his only two wins; 2-5.
EO Kotooshu (6-0) vs. EM4 Homasho (3-3): head-to-head is 9-6 in the Eurozeki’s favor. Today’s tachiai saw Kotooshu right on the line of scrimmage and Homie waaaay back. The Eurozeki starts off with a nice tsuppari going—the kind of tsuppari which has been earning him wins this basho. Something went awry. Chief was taking to the bales, but turned on offensive and drove forward. The Eurozeki was thrown off balance and missed with one of his big thrusts. That was enough for Chief Homie to capitalize with a thrust-out win. Cigar Store Indian at 4-3, and the Eurozeki looking good this basho until the last third of today’s bout. 6-1, it tis’.
WM3 Takayasu (4-2) vs. WO Kotoshogiku (3-3): first meeting between these two, and in fact, it’s this new kid on the block’s first bout against an Ozeki. The men had a good, honest tachiai with firm tsuppari and no funny sideways bizness, but the Geek was the only one able to get his feet moving forward. Call it a force-out win for the Geek, who improves to 4-3, and has got the Yokozuna tomorrow. Takayasu hangs tough at 4-3.
EY Hakuho (6-0) vs. EM3 Kitataiki (1-5): Daiyokozuna is 4-0 against the young Tokyoite. Tachiai, and Hakuho literally drove through like Kitataiki was a mere mirage. It looked as if Kitataiki was moving back, just trying to escape at the last second. The Dai-Yokozuna improves to 7-0. Kitataiki is free fallin’ at 1-6.
End of Day 7, and 7-0 rikishi are a stable Hakuho and an uncharacteristically motivated Baruto. 6-1 are a hyped Kisenosato, and an uncharacteristically focused Kotooshu.
Hump Day tomorrow, and we’ll have a strong member to be with you.