On the 29th the JSA held a keiko (training) session that was open to the public for free viewing. A total of over 7500 people came, the highest in over 5 years, but the general consensus was that the practice session was a dud. Harumafuji apparently injured his ankle a few days prior and was unable to make an appearance, and the other top wrestlers’s performances were spotty at best. Hakuho lost multiple tines to other rikishi, and the newly-promoted Kakuryu was widely-reported to have displayed sloppy sumo, going 3-5 against the sanyaku folk. Kakuryu commented afterwards that he was, “Just bewildered out there. My sumo was all over the place.”
On the other side of the spectrum, Toyonoshima, looking forward to his return to sekiwake, apparently showed off some pretty cool moves. In regards to Hakuho’s performance, Kitanoumi rijicho said, “Because we only have one Yokozuna at the moment, it would be nice if he could display sumo worth of the title.” Ouch.
ALSO! The pimple on sumo’s ass that was known as ex-ozeki Kotomitsuki recently opened up a yakiniku joint named Yakiniku Yamitsuki in Nagoya. This was the first time that the disgraced former Ozeki has talked to the press since he was forced out of the sport 2 years ago after being caught up in the Baseball betting scandal. (Honestly though, would anyone have been surprised if he would have been kicked out a few months later in the yaocho scandal? The guy had enough 8-7s as an ozeki to go toe-to-toe with Kaio.) He said that after he was forced out, he “Thought that my life was over.” In regards to sumo he “Still has a lot of affection towards the sport, but I have nothing to say about the JSA. I still enjoy watching the sport especially now because of the historic situation of 6 Ozeki. I hope my kohai Kotoshogiku and friend Toyonoshima will do well.” “In the future, I want my 3 year old son to become a rikishi as well.”