After flaking out on nakabi’s report, Dick Montana is here to pleasure all of you sumo fans with some senshuraku reporting. With the first real yokozuna contender in 5 years, this basho has been a fun one to watch, especially with all of the K.O.s later in the tournament. Although I feel Haruma’s slaps can be excessive, they are unfortunately necessary for someone of his size, and I think that if he keeps up the sumo he has been displaying the past two tournaments, he will make a fine Yokozuna. Unfortunately, with the state of the sumo world as is, it will be impossible for him to win over Hakuho today in any way that will not have people screaming yaocho. And the sad part is, they may be right.
As a side note, among the prizes for today seems to be a giant green hamburger/macaroon.
Starting in the lower ranks, both Jokoryu and Ikioi won their bouts over their respective opponents to end the basho tied at 11-4 which took them to a playoff which Jokoryu won. Like Valentine reported yesterday, this cat is going to be in Makuuchi next tournament which makes him the fastest rikishi to get to makuuchi ever. It’s hard to believe anyone could break his record of 9 basho without having a perfect record. Looking forward to him tossing some salads in the upper division.
M9 Takayasu 10-4 vs M6 Masunoyama 7-7
Whenever I see Masunoyama I am reminded of a particular word in Japanese, hisshi¸(必死) that translates roughly as desperate. Apparently my wife thinks Kirby is a more apt description. Everything this guys does has 120% percent of his heart behind it. Today was no exception. Takayasu had a special prized on the line and masunoyama was working for his KK. After a quick tachi-ai, Masunjoyama eventually forced out the half Filipino. What was interesting was that it took him about 10 seconds to work out the other guy which is usually more stamina that he has in his laughably small tank.
M10 Wakakoyu 6-8 vs M5 Takekaze 7-7
The moriyoshi mackerel and the wookie couldn’t get their tachi-ais to align today, but eventually managed to get this shit show moving. To the surprise of absolutely no one, this match was a battle of who could slap the other down first. Neither rikishi gave any attempt at pushing out or going for the belt. I put up with takekaze because he’s the hometown hero, but watching two of these hacks in the ring at the same time is a bit much. Takekaze walks away with his 8 and Wakakoyu finishes at 6-9.
At this point in time you hear the crowd start to rumble like they would when the yokozuna makes an appearance. And for good reason, the 68th yokozuna Asashoryu appeared in the stands to see if his fellow mongol can take the title of yokozuna number 70.
M5 Tochiozan 9-5 vs M8 Okinoumi 10-4
Both of these wrestlers have their 8 and it shows in their less-than-exciting sumo. Okinoumi gets a straight oshidashi win and finishes aki at a respectable 11-4 and Tochiozan walks away with his fighting spirit prize for defeating Hakuho on his 15th attempt earlier this basho.
M8 Daido 7-7 vs M4 Toyohibiki 6-8
After a false start, these two bellies collide with Beeker’s hand on daido’s throat. In very toyohibiki-fashion he shoves his opponent up with the nodowa and then drops low to push him out. Both rikishi end at 7-8.
M7 Shotenro 5-9 vs M2 Gagamaru 4-10
Anyone else think shotenro looks a lot like harmua? Just me? Whatever. After at relatively quick initial charge from the Georgian, Shotenro puts his left hand inside and wastes no time in dumping the giant to the clay via sukuinage. When gaga is on he is on, but he needs to improve his waza badly is he wants to regain his sanyaku rank.
M2 Aran 3-11 vs M9 Kitataiki 5-9
Predictable Aran goes into this match with less of a battle plan than a desire to get into a bar fight. Aran tries a few weak tsuppari, slaps, and hangs out at the tawara for a bit before eventually getting showed out by Kittytaiki.
M3 Homasho 8-6 vs M1 Kaisei 7-7
Homasho goes like a bullet at the start straight into the Brazilian’s chest. Homie tries again and again to push the larger wrestler out but Kaisei just leans on him trying to preserve energy. Eventually homasho musters the strength to get Kaisei’s legs over the straw. Kaisei walks away with his makekoshi and cigar store finishes at a respectable 9-6 that this author thinks he will be unable to repeat next tournament. I feel that Kaisei really has improved his fundamentals since his first saunter into makuuchi, but he still needs to be more aggressive if he wants to make that jump into sanyaku territory.
M1 Shohozan 6-8 vs M3 Toyonoshima 6-8
If I was Toyonoshima I would try to sue hakuho for royalties on the shoulder slam that he used against kise yesterday and kyogiryu the day before to use to knock out Myogiryu and Kisenosato. Unfortunately it seems like toyo has been lacking the fire that the yokozuna has for the last two basho and it has been showing in his results. Today, he stood up with his shoulder tackle just a little too high at the initial charge and Shoho took full advantage to push is smaller opponent up and out. Shoho ends at 7-7 , Toyo at 6-9.
M7 Miyabiyama 5-9 vs K Tochinoshin 5-9
Tochinoshin gives a half BUZZ (henka) at the tachi-ai to get to the bigger (and older) rikishi’s side to get migi-yotsu and walk him out. Noshin finishes at an expected of the meat grinder 6-9 and miyabi goes down to 5-10.
K Aoiyama 4-10 vs M6 Tokitenku 5-9
Flap jack tits and Sir shin kicky square off for their 4th time to decide once and for all which of them will fall down in rank the farthest this tournament. Aioyama goes for a two hands to the throat strategy and Tokitenku adimarable holds up against it long enough to slap his neck free and shove the Bulgarian out. Aoiyama 4-11, Toki 6-9
M11 Kyokutenho 10-4 vs S Goeido 7-7
What’s a M11 with no chance of yusho-ing doing fighting a sekiwake on senshuraku again? Fairly simple match with Goeido getting a hand inside and driving Kyoku to the bales again and again before the 38 year old bowed to the pressure and walked himself out.
S Myogiryu 10-4 vs M4 Aminishiki 9-5
Myogi seems to have lost none of the fire that he had the other day when he ran his face into the yokozuna’s shoulder and unfortunately the sneak saw through it to step back and slap him to the ground. Myogi is a fantastic all around wrestlers but he does have a tendency to fall forwards. Both wrestlers end 10-5.
O Kakuryu 10-4 vs O Kisenosato 10-4
7-18 between these two in kise’s favor. Kakuryu shows some of the spirit he had when he was shoting for his ozeki promotion and makes short work of the blinky mc stinky with a hand to the throat. Kakuryu 11-4, Kise 10-5
Y Hakuho 13-1 vs O Harumafuji 14-0
Like I said earlier, regardless of the content of the match, it is almost impossible not to project your own subconscious onto the match and scream yaocho, so I will just stick with reporting the match as a straight up bout, regardless of what happens. If you guys think something fishy was up, tell us in the comments.
Hakuho comes in low and manages to get a right hand inside grip. Things look good for the yokozuna until haruma manages a lightning quick makikake and gets his left hand inside Hakuho’s after which the Hak takes Haruma to the edge, but pulls back at the last minute. The two stick together for over a minute and a patient harumafuji ends up getting morizashi, Haruma uses that moment to drive Hakuho to the opposuite edge. Hakuho digs deeeeep and manages to stay in the ring but the Haruma uses the Yokozuna’s opposing energy to bring him forward and swing him around a full rotation and a half before they both go down to the clay due to Harumafuji’s shitatenage with Hakuho’s hand hitting the ground first.
And it’s official, Harumafuji is going to be the sport’s 70th Yokozuna as he wins his 4th tournament and his second in a row this year, both with perfect records. As the new champion walks to collect his prize, the sport’s 68th Yokozuna looks over him with pride (and annoyance at the jackass couple next to him).
That’s it for this year’s aki tournament folks. What did you guys think? Was the final match of the day straight up? What can we expect from our newest side-rope holder?
See you guys in November,