Is it weird to search for naked pictures of yourself on the Internet? Damn you de Gama, see what you have done to me!
Usually when a basho has been wrapped up by day 13, my interest level in the remaining two days is riding as low as Valentines tights, but this time, with Hakuho having a chance to win his 9th perfect championship and move into first place of all time, there is plenty of interest in todays actions.
Today in the Jonidan division, the second to lowest division with around 200 rikishi, 9 rikishi finished with 6-1 winning records. And a massive playoff ensued. Kinunonami, a 20 year old from Ibaraki, went on to take the yusho.
The next division up, Sandanme, with 200 rikishi, also had a playoff which saw Tosayutaka (a former mukuuchi M1 rikishi!) easily defeat Wakarikido to claim a perfect record, and begin his return to the higher divisions.
And finally in the Jūryō division playoff Kyokushuho took on Azumaryu, both men were at 12-3. Azumaryu got a beautiful grip on the front on the mawashi, with his right hand deep on Kyokusho’s belt, and immediately drove him back. But Kyoku had a double handed grip also, and was far from finished. As the two were exchanging lifts and pushes, Azuma found himself on the bales and about to be yorikiri-ed out, he attempted off a beautiful ucchari backward pivot throw. The gyogi pointed his gumbai to Kyoku, and a mono-ii was called. The relpays clearly showed Azumaryu’s left heel touched outside as he executed his ucchari attempt.
So now, on to makuuchi!
Before things got underway today were were informed that former ozeki Miyabiyama has announced his retirement. He finished with a 3-12 losing record from J9 position.
E-M16 Oiwato E-J4 Homarefuji
Oiwato went in with tsuppari while Homarefuji went for the belt. Homa reacted well though, keeping a good position, not allowing Oiwato to raise his centre of gravity. Hama then used some tsuppari himself easily defeating the higher ranked Oiwato. He finished at 10-5 and will be back in makuuchi in May.
E-M14 Chiyonokuni W-M13 Sadanofuji
Another tsuppari fest, but Chiyo’s arms were all over the place. So Sadanofuji could easily get inside and force Chiyo out without needing the belt.
W-J1 Kotoyuki W-M12 Masunoyama
Masunoyama henkaed at the tachai-ai picking himself up an simple win. Kotoyuki went straight forward and straight down.
W-M16 Wakanosato W-M11 Jokoryu
Both men lock up from the tachi-ai. And with all sorts of grip breaks and throw attempts. Finally the old man manages an uwatenage overarm throw. Wakanosato finishes up with 9-6. Is he ever going to retire? Probably not.
E-M11 Takekaze W-M15 Sotairyu
Usually Takekaze pushes his opponent and waits for the opportunity to slap them back down. Sotairyu isn’t so heavy though, and he was able to drive him out quite easily. The Akitan moves to 9-6
W-M10 Tamawashi W-M9 Yoshikaze
Yoshikaze gor a superb left deep grip from the tachi-ai. I thought Tawa was going to use an arm bar throw, but Yoshikaze kep his position well and prevented it. Yoshi then tried to throw, which failed until he used his left leg and threw Tamawashi over his leg and onto the dohyo. Yoshikaze moves to 9-6.
E-M9 Fujiazuma E-M10 Takarafuji
Fuji came out strong and drove Takarafuji back but without a grip he couldn’t continue for long. Taka got a left had inside while driving. After some slight resistance at the bales, Taka won with ease, and picks up his 11th win!
E-M8 Aoiyama W-M6 Kitataiki
Kitataiki henka-ed at the tachi-ai and as Aoiyama passed him by he rushed back in, preventing Aoiyama to regain his centre of gravity. And with a left boob squeeze and some oshidashi Kitataiki gained his 10th win.
E-M5 Aran E-M15 Daido
Both men at 7-7. Aran got a great grip at the start, a strong left hand grip was keeping Daido at a very awkward angle. Aran should have been able to do something, but didn’t. Daido then somehow drove forward and Aran was trying to twist him down. But Aran stepped out before he hit the dirt. Daido scrapes his 8th win.
W-M8 Kyokutenho W-M3 Ikioi
Ikiyoi won the tachi-ai and contained Kyokutenho very well. As they struggled for grips, the Mongolian went to drive, and Ikky spun him around and yorikiri-ed him out. Ikiyoi finishes at 4-11 and prevented Kyokutenho from getting his kachikoshi.
E-M3 Tokitenku E-M12 Shotenro
Shotenro got the better tachi-ai, coming out faster and getting under Tokitenku’s chin. He drove him straight back to the bales and was now using his hands to push in his face. Shotenro then reversed and slapped Toki down. Shotenro picks us his 8th win.
E-M7 Okinoumi W-M2 Myogiryu
Okinoumi showed excellent ring sense and footwork and he circled around nicely when being driven back by Myogiryu. Oki then got his hand on the front of the mawashi, raised his opponent up, and was then able to drive him out with ease. Oki gets his 11-4 career high win.
W-M7 Toyohibiki W-M1 Tochinoshin
Tochinoshin stepped to the side and pushed down on the back of Toyohibiki’s head and dropped him with ease. Nasty henka, helped No-balls to finish at 7-8.
E-M1 Takayasu E-M6 Gagamaru
Gagamaru came out strong, as he does, catching Takayasu and driving forward. Luckily for Taka he got a grip at the back Gaga’s belt and stepped to the side and pulled off a beautiful overarm throw. Both men finish the tournament at 5-10.
W-M5 Kaisei W-K Aminishiki
Aminishi kept nice and low, and got a frontal grip. Keeping his head in Kaisei’s chin preventing Kaisei from doing much. Ami-chan then stepped to the side, and pulled the Brazilian forward, getting directly behind him. Kaisei knew the game was up at that stage, and stood upright to be walked out. Faster rikishi would have tried to turn around. Aminishiki finishes at 7-8.
E-K Tochiozan E-M4 Toyonoshima
Tochiozan blasted with his shoulder and pushed Toyo back. Toyo tried to slip to the side and … something. But anyway, he lost his footing and Tochi followed with a strong push to the torso driving Toyo onto the straw bales, where he balanced like a tight rope walker, until Tochi came back with a final push. Tochiozan picks up his 10th win.
E-S Goeido W-M4 Shohozan
I don’t like Shohozan’s belt. Just sayin’. After the legit tachi-ai Goeido found that Shoho was under him, without a grip. So Goeido simply pulled on the back of his head and dropped him. Goeido moves to 10-5.
W-S Baruto W-O Kotoshogiku
Baruto prevented Koto from getting his favoured inside left grip, but gained a nice right hand outside himself. Then when Koto went to drive Baruto spun him around and down with an overarm throw. Baruto 9-6, Kotoshogiku 8-7.
E-O Kisenosato E-O Kakuryu
Kakuryu was a bit slow at the tachi-ai. Kissy used his left paw to move the Mongolian laterally and off balance. He then followed up quickly with nice oshidashi to win with ease.
E-Y Harumafuji W-Y Hakuho
Hakuho looking for his 9th perfect record. Currently he is tied with Futabayama and Taihō with 8. After a false start from Harumafuji, they two reset. This time as Hakuho went for the belt Harry pushed on Hak’s face, driving him back, and preventing the grip he was searching for. Harry then got a left hand inside right hand outside grip., Hakuho just had a left hand inside grip, and play moved back to the centre of the dohyo. From here launched a drive, and Hakuho seemed in trouble. But spinning Harumafuji around and with beautiful foot work the Dai-yokozuna moved things back to the centre of the dohyo once again. He then broke Haruma’s left hand grip, and found himself in a somewhat awkward position. After a long stalemate, Hakuho tipped Harry’s belly and that forced him to react. Then Hakuho tried to throw him with his left handed grip, and as Harry was hopping around he grapped Hakuho’s hand for some support, and gained a lifeline. Again back to the centre, then a few wiggle of the hips and Hakuho gets his right hand inside. But Harumafuji had done the same on the other side. After another stalemate, and to yokozuna with their hips very low, Hakuho drove forward and overpowered Harumafuji over the edge. Great fight. Excellent sumo from both yokozuna. Unfortunately for Harumafuji he finishes with a disgraceful 9-6. Hakuho with a perfect 15-0.
Today the Sanshō Special prizes were as follows:
Kantō-shō or Fighting Spirit prize went to Okinoumi (11-4).
Shukun-shō or Outstanding Performance prize – no winner.
Ginō-shō or Technique prize – no winner.
Oh also, Miyabiyama retired! He will become Futagoyama-oyakata.
Well that’s it for senshuraku, please check back in a few days for the wind down.