Asashosakari

Heisei Hopefuls - prospect watch

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D'oh, I failed to list Kizaki as a new Tier 3 entrant last time. How did that happen? Anyway, here are the lineups for Kyushu:

Tier 1 (Q) - Takagenji makes the first Tier 1 appearance in the extended promotion zone since Sato got promoted to juryo, and Kotokamatani and Shonannoumi try to keep their KK streaks going.

Tier 2 (Q) - Rikishin narrowly missed out on earning his juryo debut last time and holds the top spot in makushita now, where any KK will be enough. There will be some clear-out here as 4 of the 20 members are set to move to Tier 3 for the new year.

Tier 3 (Q) - Sakamoto here holds the other Ms1 spot and also has an excellent shot at making it to juryo. Fellow collegiates Ishibashi, Tamaki, Kizaki and Ikegawa all scored at least 6 wins last time and will bear watching again. We're also going to shrink this tier again, with 3 rikishi set to drop to Tier 4 and another trio going out altogether.

Tier 4 (Q) - Undersized Iwasaki has yet to MK in his two years as a pro and has arrived in the top 5 makushita ranks now. Tochimaru joins him in the promotion zone. Aiyama has changed his shikona to Ayanoumi, and Akua and Asakoki are both in their last prospect basho.

Edited by Asashosakari
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On 10/15/2016 at 12:02, Asashosakari said:

I'm only keeping track of rikishi who have never been to juryo.

What exactly is the yardstick?

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I've rooted for Iwasaki from the moment I saw him in Mae-zumo. I hope he will be able to continue his KK streak and make it to the paid ranks. From there, it's anybody's guess whether he will be able to compensate his lack of size with cleverness and experience.

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5 hours ago, Bumpkin said:

What exactly is the yardstick?

To be on the list for the first three tiers, one needs a career high in Makushita.  For the fourth tier, a career high in the top quarter of makushita (the extended promotion zone) is needed.  The first tier includes those younger than the most recently born person who has become a sekitori.  The other three tiers are based on age: 21 and under, 22-23, and 24-25.  It's quite possible that tier two is logically empty if no youngster has made it to Juryo recently.

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Catching up with the Kyushu results...

Tier 1:

A potential breakout performance by Takagenji with excellent 5 wins at a much higher position than he had ever fought before; his twin brother is now lagging behind quite significantly. Kotokamatani suffered the first small setback of his still-young career, while top tier newcomer Shonannoumi had a successful makushita debut.

Heisei Hopefuls for Kyushu 2016 - Tier 1: Top Talents - current yardstick: Sato (1996/08/05, debut 2014.09, shin-juryo 2016.05)
Rikishi Heya DOB Debut HiRk 2016.01 2016.03 2016.05 2016.07 2016.09 2016.11
Takagenji Takanohana 1997/05/13 (3) 2013.03 Ms7 Ms60w 6-1 D Ms28w 3-4 Ms36w 5-2 Ms25w 4-3 Ms20e 6-1 Ms7e 5-2
Takayoshitoshi Takanohana 1997/05/13 (3) 2013.03 Ms24 Ms53w 5-2 Ms38w 3-4 Ms45w 3-4 Ms53w 6-1 Ms24w 2-5 Ms39e 4-3
Kotokamatani Sadogatake 1997/11/19 (2) 2015.11 Ms43 Jk20e 7-0 Y Jd10e 6-1 Sd49e 5-2 Sd24w 5-2 Ms59w 5-2 Ms43e 3-4
Shonannoumi Takadagawa 1998/04/08 (1) 2014.03 Ms59 Sd75w 4-3 Sd57e 5-2 Sd29e 4-3 Sd18e 4-3 Sd8w 4-3 Ms59e 4-3


No newcomers for the new year.

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Tier 2:

The prospect highlights of the basho were produced here, courtesy of surprise yusho winner Terutsuyoshi and fellow talent Rikishin who capped off his recent rise with an impressive 6-1 record. The rest of the lineup was largely unimpressive though, with only three more kachikoshi by prospects ranked in makushita, one of them by Hakuyozan who was ranked well below his capabilities and still only posted 4 wins; Kaito's 4-3 at his career high and Kiribayama's 5-2 ranked just below his were somewhat more notable.

Heisei Hopefuls for Kyushu 2016 - Tier 2: Promising Youngsters - Age 21 and under
Rikishi Heya DOB Debut HiRk 2016.01 2016.03 2016.05 2016.07 2016.09 2016.11
Rikishin Tatsunami 1995/10/07 (14) 2011.05 Ms1 Ms23w 3-4 Ms31e 6-1 Ms10e 4-3 Ms8e 4-3 Ms5w 5-2 Ms1e 6-1
Masunosho Chiganoura 1994/11/14 (23) 2010.03 Ms6 Ms26e 4-3 Ms22e 5-2 Ms11e 3-4 Ms17e 4-3 Ms13w 5-2 Ms6e 2-5
Terutsuyoshi Isegahama 1995/01/17 (20) 2010.03 Ms3 Ms10e 6-1 D Ms3w 3-4 Ms8w 1-6 Ms32e 4-3 Ms26w 6-1 Ms9w 7-0 Y
Hakuyozan Takadagawa 1995/04/13 (17) 2011.05 Ms1 Ms7w 5-2 Ms4e 4-3 Ms1e 2-5 Ms9w 2-5 Ms27e 4-3 Ms20w 4-3
Kotaro Fujishima 1995/12/06 (12) 2014.01 Ms14 Ms47e 6-1 D Ms20e 4-3 Ms14w 3-4 Ms19w 3-4 Ms28w 4-3 Ms23e 3-4
Kaito Asakayama 1996/06/19 (5) 2012.05 Ms27 Jd64e 7-0 Y Sd66e 6-1 Sd11w 3-4 Sd22e 5-2 Ms58e 6-1 Ms27w 4-3
Kaiseio Asakayama 1995/01/28 (18) 2013.03 Ms18 Ms38e 0-1-6 Sd18w 5-2 Ms56w 6-1 Ms24w 4-3 Ms18w 2-5 Ms31e 0-7
Kiribayama Michinoku 1996/04/24 (9) 2015.05 Ms30 Ms59w 3-4 Sd12e 4-3 Sd3e 6-1 Ms30e 0-0-7 Sd11e 6-1 Ms35e 5-2
Takakento Takanohana 1996/02/10 (10) 2014.01 Ms26 Sd4e 2-5 Sd29w 3-4 Sd42e 6-1 Ms55e 4-3 Ms46w 4-3 Ms36e 2-5
Musashikuni Musashigawa 1994/12/17 (21) 2013.07 Ms26 Sd28w 4-3 Sd13w 4-3 Sd5w 4-3 Ms54w 6-1 Ms26e 2-5 Ms43w 2-5
Tochiseiryu Kasugano 1995/04/26 (16) 2014.03 Ms33 Ms54w 3-4 Sd7e 5-2 Ms47e 5-2 Ms33w 2-5 Ms54w 4-3 Ms47e 2-5
Fukamiyama Onoe 1994/11/12 (24) 2010.03 Ms47 Sd11e 4-3 Ms60e 3-4 Sd13w 5-2 Ms52w 3-4 Sd4e 5-2 Ms49e 3-4
Gokushindo Nishikido 1996/06/06 (7) 2012.03 Ms28 Sd23e 5-2 Ms59e 6-1 Ms28e 0-0-7 Sd8e 4-3 Ms57w 4-3 Ms51e 3-4
Hamayutaka Tokitsukaze 1995/11/17 (13) 2011.05 Ms58 Sd50e 2-5 Sd77e 4-3 Sd57w 6-1 Sd5w 3-4 Sd22w 5-2 Ms59w 3-4
Onojo Takadagawa 1996/01/31 (11) 2011.05 Ms60 Sd22w 4-3 Sd9w 2-5 Sd34e 5-2 Sd12w 3-4 Sd28w 4-3 Sd14w 4-3
Kasugamaru Oitekaze 1995/01/24 (19) 2013.01 Ms55 Sd17e 5-2 Ms55w 0-0-7 Sd33w 2-5 Sd61e 4-3 Sd42w 4-3 Sd26w 0-0-7
Oki Shikoroyama 1996/06/12 (6) 2013.07 Ms42 Ms59e 3-4 Sd11w 5-2 Ms52e 4-3 Ms42e 1-6 Sd7w 2-5 Sd32e 6-1
Nakazono Nishonoseki 1996/05/18 (8) 2012.03 Ms60 Sd48e 5-2 Sd21w 4-3 Sd11e 4-3 Ms60e 3-4 Sd12e 2-5 Sd40e 5-2
Tamakongo Kataonami 1995/09/19 (15) 2014.03 Ms56 Ms56e 3-4 Sd10w 3-4 Sd23w 4-3 Sd12e 3-4 Sd27e 3-4 Sd46w 5-2
Sakae Sakaigawa 1994/11/19 (22) 2013.03 Ms55 Sd5e 3-4 Sd17w 5-2 Ms55w 3-4 Sd4w 3-4 Sd20w 0-0-7 Sd81e 6-1


Lots of changes here for the next edition. Besides the two juryo promotees we're losing another five rikishi from Tier 2:  Masunosho, Musashikuni, Fukamiyama and Sakae have all aged out and will continue in Tier 3, while Kasugamaru was caught up in the Kasugayama-Oitekaze mess and has called it quits.

Joining us is one newcomer this time:

Rikishi Heya DOB Debut HiRk 2016.01 2016.03 2016.05 2016.07 2016.09 2016.11
Asahiryu Asahiyama 1995/04/22 2016.05 Sd79     Mz 3-0 Jk23e 6-1 Jd45e 6-1 Sd79w 7-0 D

Not much to say here: Mongolian, lanky, technically well-rounded. Low makushita probably won't be his personal wall yet even with the massive immediate jump from low sandanme. However, he's not that young in top prospect terms and will already see himself shuttled off to Tier 3 after another two basho.

Edited by Asashosakari
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(Grr, browser crashed with the post nearly completed and the forum didn't save any of it...)

Tier 3:

Another juryo promotion here, for Sakamoto (now Daiamami) who completed his unusual year-long 4-3 trek. Second-ranked Akinokawa had a basho to forget and finished 1-6, but the rest of this section performed admirably with lots of kachikoshi and only one more result below 3-4.

The collegiate youngsters produced most of the highlights here again. Tsukedashi entrant Ishibashi's rise continued unabated with another 5 wins, Tamaki also continued his debut KK streak, Aki sandanme yusho winner Kizaki survived his large 7-0 jump to eke out a kachikoshi from 2-3 down, and Ichiki scored strong 6 wins in his makushita debut. Only Ikegawa marred the picture a bit, having to sit out the basho. The sole non-collegiate debutant of the basho, Kotohayato, had a somewhat tougher time and ended his campaign at 3-4.

Heisei Hopefuls for Kyushu 2016 - Tier 3: Still Worth Watching - Age 23 and under
Rikishi Heya DOB Debut HiRk 2016.01 2016.03 2016.05 2016.07 2016.09 2016.11
Sakamoto Oitekaze 1992/12/15 (52) 2016.01 Ms1 Ms15Td 4-3 Ms11w 4-3 Ms9e 4-3 Ms6e 4-3 Ms3w 4-3 Ms1w 4-3
Akinokawa Takadagawa 1992/11/30 (53) 2008.03 Ms6 Ms9w 3-4 Ms14e 5-2 Ms6e 3-4 Ms11e 3-4 Ms16e 4-3 Ms10w 1-6
Goshi Arashio 1993/10/05 (38) 2011.11 Ms7 Sd26w 5-2 Sd1w 6-1 Ms29e 4-3 Ms22w 4-3 Ms16w 4-3 Ms12w 4-3
Ishibashi Takasago 1994/03/01 (34) 2016.03 Ms14   Sd100Td 5-2 Sd66e 6-1 Sd11w 6-1 Ms36w 6-1 Ms14e 5-2
Tamaki Takasago 1993/05/29 (45) 2016.01 Ms17 Mz 2-0-2 Jk19w 7-0 Y Jd10w 7-0 Y Sd19e 6-1 Ms41e 6-1 Ms17e 4-3
Daiseido Kise 1992/12/30 (51) 2011.05 Ms3 Ms21w 3-4 Ms30e 2-5 Ms50e 5-2 Ms36e 4-3 Ms28e 4-3 Ms22e 5-2
Kizaki Kise 1993/05/06 (46) 2016.03 Ms26   Mz 2-1 Jk15w 6-1 Jd38e 7-0 Y Sd39w 7-0 Y Ms26e 4-3
Tsurubayashi Kise 1993/12/31 (36) 2009.03 Ms12 Ms32e 5-2 Ms18w 2-5 Ms35w 4-3 Ms29w 3-4 Ms39w 5-2 Ms28e 5-2
Tochinobori Kasugano 1993/09/01 (40) 2009.03 Ms12 Ms22w 5-2 Ms12w 2-5 Ms30e 4-3 Ms24e 2-5 Ms41w 4-3 Ms31w 4-3
Rikito Tokitsukaze 1993/09/21 (39) 2011.09 Ms19 Sd9w 4-3 Ms59w 5-2 Ms41w 4-3 Ms33e 5-2 Ms19e 2-5 Ms32e 3-4
Kotokuzan Arashio 1994/03/11 (33) 2009.09 Ms34 Ms43w 3-4 Ms53e 0-0-7 Sd31w 4-3 Sd19w 4-3 Sd9e 6-1 Ms34w 4-3
Takakasuga Oitekaze 1993/03/06 (48) 2011.09 Ms23 Ms40w 3-4 Ms48e 5-2 Ms29w 4-3 Ms23e 3-4 Ms30w 3-4 Ms40e 3-4
Ikegawa Hakkaku 1993/06/02 (44) 2016.03 Ms41   Mz 2-0 Jk10w 7-0 Y Jd10e 7-0 D Sd19w 6-1 Ms41w 0-0-7
Aonosho Dewanoumi 1993/06/03 (43) 2009.03 Ms29 Ms46w 1-6 Sd19w 6-1 Ms41e 4-3 Ms32w 2-5 Ms54e 4-3 Ms45e 3-4
Ichiki Tamanoi 1993/11/13 (37) 2016.01 Ms53 Mz 3-0 Jk16e 6-1 Jd33e 6-1 Sd69e 6-1 Sd14e 5-2 Ms53w 6-1
Nishiyama Onoe 1994/04/27 (31) 2010.03 Ms22 Ms31e 1-6 Sd2e 4-3 Ms54e 3-4 Sd1e 3-4 Sd14w 5-2 Ms54e 3-4
Akinoyama Takadagawa 1992/11/30 (53) 2008.03 Ms21 Ms47w 4-3 Ms40w 4-3 Ms34w 5-2 Ms23w 2-5 Ms40e 2-5 Ms58w 4-3
Kotohayato Sadogatake 1994/04/18 (32) 2010.03 Ms60 Jd32e 6-1 Sd68w 5-2 Sd39e 4-3 Sd24e 4-3 Sd11w 4-3 Ms60w 3-4
Omoto Irumagawa 1992/11/23 (56) 2015.01 Ms41 Ms56w 5-2 Ms41w 3-4 Ms51e 3-4 Ms59w 4-3 Ms50w 3-4 Sd2w 2-5
Rao Tatsunami 1993/03/30 (47) 2011.01 Ms37 Ms41w 2-5 Sd6e 3-4 Sd21e 5-2 Ms57e 5-2 Ms37e 1-6 Sd5e 5-2
Hokutoshu Hakkaku 1994/01/14 (35) 2012.03 Ms50 Sd20e 4-3 Sd8e 5-2 Ms50w 2-5 Sd14e 3-4 Sd31w 5-2 Sd5w 4-3
Kotodaigo Sadogatake 1993/01/14 (49) 2011.05 Ms8 Sd83w 0-0-7 Jd44e 7-0 Y Sd44w 7-0 Y Ms28e 2-5 Ms48w 2-5 Sd10w 6-1
Shinohara Onomatsu 1993/08/21 (41) 2012.01 Ms28 Ms36w 2-5 Ms57e 4-3 Ms48w 4-3 Ms41e 3-4 Ms53e 2-5 Sd16e 3-4
Hokutokawa Hakkaku 1994/08/15 (26) 2013.03 Ms47 Sd35w 4-3 Sd20e 3-4 Sd34w 5-2 Sd13w 4-3 Sd5e 3-4 Sd19w 5-2
Kirinofuji Michinoku 1994/07/28 (27) 2011.01 Ms52 Ms52w 2-5 Sd14w 2-5 Sd40e 4-3 Sd26e 5-2 Sd1w 2-5 Sd24e 5-2
Kotonoshu Sadogatake 1994/07/01 (29) 2010.03 Ms53 Sd2e 2-5 Sd26e 4-3 Sd15w 2-5 Sd41e 5-2 Sd16w 3-4 Sd31e 4-3
Chiyonoumi Kokonoe 1993/01/11 (50) 2015.05 Ms13 Sd9e 7-0 Y Ms13e 0-0-7 Ms53w 0-0-7 Sd33w 0-0-7 Sd94e 6-1 Sd36e 5-2
Baraki Shikihide 1994/05/10 (30) 2013.01 Ms58 Sd57e 4-3 Sd41w 2-5 Sd68e 4-3 Sd49w 3-4 Sd63e 4-3 Sd44e 4-3
Aomihama Dewanoumi 1994/10/27 (25) 2010.03 Ms49 Sd34e 5-2 Sd8w 3-4 Sd21w 2-5 Sd47e 4-3 Sd31e 3-4 Sd50w 3-4
Haguroho Tatsunami 1993/07/08 (42) 2009.03 Ms20 Sd86e 6-1 Sd28w 6-1 Ms47w 3-4 Ms56e 2-5 Sd15e 0-0-7 Sd76e 0-0-7
Fukuyamato Oitekaze 1994/07/22 (28) 2013.01 Ms45 Sd92w 0-0-7 Jd53e 0-0-7 Jk6e 0-1-6 Jk30e 6-1 Jd49w 6-1 Sd83w 0-0-7
Ikeru Onomatsu 1992/11/26 (55) 2010.11 Ms18 Jk15w 0-0-7 Bg Bg Mz 3-1 Jk27e 6-1 Jd46w 6-1


Lots of turnover here as well: One juryo promotion, two shifts to Tier 4 (Akinokawa and Daiseido), three age-based departures (Akinoyama, Omoto and Ikeru), and another Kasugayama-beya intai (Fukuyamato).

Plus two new faces:

Rikishi Heya DOB Debut HiRk 2016.01 2016.03 2016.05 2016.07 2016.09 2016.11
Hatooka Kise 1994/02/23 2016.03 Sd15   Mz 2-0 Jk11w 6-1 Jd34w 6-1 Sd70w 6-1 Sd15e 5-2
Chiyonokatsu Kokonoe 1994/04/13 2013.03 Sd2 Sd31e 3-4 Sd46e 4-3 Sd28w 5-2 Sd2w 2-5 Sd28e 3-4 Sd48e 6-1

Hatooka is the next university rikishi to bolster the ranks. Not an overly spectacular rise so far, although his handful of losses have largely come against other high-powered rikishi. I'd guess another small KK or two are still in the offing, but Ms30-ish opposition might pose problems in a few months. The good news is that he's bringing a decent physique, but without looking like he's already maxed out (184 cm / 145 kg). Mainly yori-based offense so far, with a smattering of other techniques, though it remains to be seen if that will continue against tougher foes.

Chiyonokatsu turned pro out of high school  so he has been around the block a few more times, but in fact he's the slightly younger of the two debutants. Not that much to quibble with his progress; one year to sandanme and then a little over two years to makushita is alright for a middle-of-the-road prospect. Of course, he might have got a bit lucky with this debut off a 6-1 record; he'll have to show that he's in fact reached a new level now and isn't just the same guy who has bounced around the Sd30 area for the last year and a half. His largest handicap is almost certainly his size at just shy of 180 cm and around 120 kg. (Might be a bit more than what the DB and Kyokai site show, but not that much.)

Technique-wise he's a bit of an odd duck, with roughly 40% yori and another 15% each by oshidashi and shitatenage...plus no less than 6 (!) isamiashi in only 83 shiroboshi. He's already the all-time #4 in the era for which the DB has chronicled the full results, i.e. roughly the last 30 years. His losing stats are also a sight to behold, with 28 of his 71 losses (nearly 40%) having been by yoritaoshi...I thought that only happened to such a huge degree in lightweight amasumo. (Of course, the yoritaoshi also go some way towards explaining the many isamiashi by his opponents.)

Edited by Asashosakari
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Tier 4:

Decent enough results down here as well, although our #1 Iwasaki had a disappointing basho and ended his nearly two-year KK streak with a 2-5 record to miss out on promotion to juryo. Tochimaru did KK in the promotion zone, but didn't get a look in and will have to try again this month. Shiba will be joining him in the top 5 ranks after his third successive KK has now reversed the slide caused by an earlier 3-MK series.

Note: Ayanoumi was previously known as Aiyama.

Heisei Hopefuls for Kyushu 2016 - Tier 4: Last Chance Saloon - Ms15+ Age 25 and under
Rikishi Heya DOB Debut HiRk 2016.01 2016.03 2016.05 2016.07 2016.09 2016.11
Iwasaki Oitekaze 1992/04/24 (59) 2015.01 Ms3 Ms24e 4-3 Ms19w 4-3 Ms13w 4-3 Ms10w 4-3 Ms7w 5-2 Ms3e 2-5
Tochimaru Kasugano 1992/08/26 (57) 2011.05 Ms4 Ms13e 6-1 Y Ms5w 1-5-1 Ms22e 4-3 Ms18e 5-2 Ms9w 5-2 Ms4w 4-3
Irodori Shikoroyama 1992/03/10 (61) 2007.03 Ms8 Ms10w 3-4 Ms16e 3-4 Ms26e 5-2 Ms17w 4-3 Ms14w 5-2 Ms8e 3-4
Shiba Kise 1991/12/24 (63) 2014.03 Ms3 Ms3e 3-4 Ms6e 3-4 Ms11w 2-4-1 Ms28w 6-1 Ms11e 4-3 Ms8w 5-2
Akua Tatsunami 1990/11/06 (67) 2010.11 Ms2 Ms7e 4-3 Ms5e 4-3 Ms2e 1-6 Ms18w 5-2 Ms10w 3-4 Ms16w 5-2
Asakoki Takasago 1990/12/19 (66) 2009.03 Ms13 Sd3e 4-3 Sd55e 3-4 Sd7w 3-4 Sd16w 7-0 Y Ms13e 2-5 Ms24w 4-3
Onami Arashio 1991/12/29 (62) 2009.11 Ms11 Ms24w 3-4 Ms32e 5-2 Ms20e 4-3 Ms14w 4-3 Ms11w 1-2-4 Ms30w 0-0-7
Kotokobai Sadogatake 1991/03/31 (65) 2006.03 Ms7 Ms34w 3-4 Ms42w 5-2 Ms25e 5-2 Ms16e 2-3-2 Ms31e 3-4 Ms41e 5-2
Sasakiyama Kise 1991/06/12 (64) 2010.01 Ms15 Ms58e 5-2 Ms43w 4-3 Ms36e 3-4 Ms42w 4-3 Ms34e 3-4 Ms45w 4-3
Ayanoumi Yamahibiki 1992/03/23 (60) 2007.03 Ms14 Ms14w 3-4 Ms23e 2-5 Ms43w 3-4 Ms51w 4-3 Ms44w 3-4 Ms55e 5-2
Wakayama Onomatsu 1992/04/26 (58) 2011.07 Ms15 Sd1w 0-0-7 Sd61w 0-0-7 Jd21w 0-0-7 Jd91w 0-0-7 Jk25e 0-0-7 Mz 3-0


Akua and Asakoki have turned 26 and were forced to hand in their prospect badges. Akua has been close to promotion before and I'm still hopeful he'll get there eventually, while I suspect that Asakoki's window of opportunity has passed.

Edited by Asashosakari
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Only 60 rikishi present on the Hopefuls watch now, lower than ever before since this thing was started. The shortfall is largely felt at the top where Tiers 1 and 2 now combine for only 18 rikishi aged 21 and under, while we've sometimes had 30+ of them. Granted, we've had quite a number of young rikishi reach juryo recently, so it's not all because of rikishi getting old and dropping out. And the flipside of this situation is that tons of teenaged deshi are currently sitting in sandanme, so things could turn back around quickly.

The lineups for Hatsu 2017:

Tier 1 (Q) - I don't know if Takagenji is quite ready to make the leap to juryo, but his recent results have certainly been impressive. Kotokamatani will probably try to score big (and just might) to wash away the bad taste of his first MK, while the other two can probably be happy with any kachikoshi.

Tier 2 (Q) - Nothing immediately interesting here with nobody even ranked in single digits, so the most watchworthy rikishi are probably the Mongolian duo of Kiribayama and Asahiryu plus Asakayama prospect Kaito, all at their career-highs.

Tier 3 (Q) - No top 5 rikishi here, but I wouldn't put it past Ishibashi to go zensho and grab the promotion that way. This section will likely continue to be the gakusei show for the foreseeable future.

Tier 4 (Q) - I wouldn't call either Tochimaru or Shiba an odds-on favourite to secure promotion here, but maybe they will surprise. Iwasaki will hopefully get back to his winning ways, too.

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The Hopefuls' Hatsu results...

Tier 1:

Takagenji continued his recent stretch of strong performances and very nearly made it to juryo to become the new yardstick rikishi. Takayoshitoshi followed suit with arguably his best tournament of his career, scoring 6 wins near his career-high rank. Shonannoumi's KK streak was extended to eight tournaments, though he had to battle for his four wins, while Kotokamatani posted another surprising makekoshi.

Heisei Hopefuls for Hatsu 2017 - Tier 1: Top Talents - current yardstick: Takakeisho (1996/08/05, debut 2014.09, shin-juryo 2016.05)
Rikishi Heya DOB Debut HiRk 2016.03 2016.05 2016.07 2016.09 2016.11 2017.01
Takagenji Takanohana 1997/05/13 (3) 2013.03 Ms4 Ms28w 3-4 Ms36w 5-2 Ms25w 4-3 Ms20e 6-1 Ms7e 5-2 Ms4w 5-2
Takayoshitoshi Takanohana 1997/05/13 (3) 2013.03 Ms24 Ms38w 3-4 Ms45w 3-4 Ms53w 6-1 Ms24w 2-5 Ms39e 4-3 Ms30w 6-1
Shonannoumi Takadagawa 1998/04/08 (1) 2014.03 Ms48 Sd57e 5-2 Sd29e 4-3 Sd18e 4-3 Sd8w 4-3 Ms59e 4-3 Ms48w 4-3
Kotokamatani Sadogatake 1997/11/19 (2) 2015.11 Ms43 Jd10e 6-1 Sd49e 5-2 Sd24w 5-2 Ms59w 5-2 Ms43e 3-4 Ms50e 3-4


Shortly before we may be reconfiguring the top two tiers again, another entrant for Tier 1 has made his way to makushita:

Rikishi Heya DOB Debut HiRk 2016.03 2016.05 2016.07 2016.09 2016.11 2017.01
Honda Nishikido 1997/03/11 2012.03 Sd3 Sd87w 4-3 Sd69e 5-2 Sd40w 3-4 Sd57w 5-2 Sd28e 5-2 Sd3e 4-3

A very unspectacular rise that's taken five years and featured no tournament results better than 5-2, but also just one that was worse than 2-5 (very early in his career). He's actually an interesting lesson in how relatively little - in win-loss terms - it takes to move through the lower parts of the banzuke: Honda's first 20 tournaments included just 10 kachikoshi and a W-L of 69-71, yet he made his way from jonokuchi all the way to Sd71 with that. Of course, the tradeoff is that this type of advancement does take its time. The last year of that 20-basho stretch was spent struggling to stay in sandanme, and it wasn't until his 5th tournament in the division that he finally managed to KK.

Since then he's strapped some boosters to his mawashi - as indicated in the table he has had 5 kachikoshi in the last 12 months, moving through nearly the full sandanme division in the process. As he hails from the ill-fated Nishikido-beya, I'm inclined to wonder if this improvement is just coincidence, or if he's an unlikely beneficiary of the departure of the stablemates that were ousted for bullying Homarenishiki...

In any case, he's not that tall at 179 cm and has only put some 15 kg onto his 95 kg debut weight from five years ago, so I'll be a bit surprised if he can continue his recent advancements immediately. It's unlikely to help that his kimarite profile looks rather traditional, with oshi techniques accounting for some 40% of his victories, yori for another 25%, and the rest the usual grab bag of throws and slapdowns. Okuridashi is somewhat over-represented in his results, as one might expect from a pusher who's smaller than his opponents, but that type of agility will only get him so far in makushita, where his foes are likely to be not just bigger but also more technically adept.

Edited by Asashosakari
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Tier 2:

Pretty much exactly as was expected before the basho: Strong results by Mongolians Kiribayama (5-2) and Asahiryu (6-1) at their career highs, and very little else of note. Kaito, also at his highest rank, had a good start into the basho but faltered during the second week and fell from 3-1 to makekoshi. #1-ranked Hakuyozan successfully continued the (slow) reclamation of his former position in the promotion zone, scoring another 4-3 record.

Heisei Hopefuls for Hatsu 2017 - Tier 2: Promising Youngsters - Age 21 and under
Rikishi Heya DOB Debut HiRk 2016.03 2016.05 2016.07 2016.09 2016.11 2017.01
Hakuyozan Takadagawa 1995/04/13 (17) 2011.05 Ms1 Ms4e 4-3 Ms1e 2-5 Ms9w 2-5 Ms27e 4-3 Ms20w 4-3 Ms14e 4-3
Kiribayama Michinoku 1996/04/24 (9) 2015.05 Ms20 Sd12e 4-3 Sd3e 6-1 Ms30e 0-0-7 Sd11e 6-1 Ms35e 5-2 Ms20e 5-2
Kaito Asakayama 1996/06/19 (5) 2012.05 Ms22 Sd66e 6-1 Sd11w 3-4 Sd22e 5-2 Ms58e 6-1 Ms27w 4-3 Ms22e 3-4
Kotaro Fujishima 1995/12/06 (12) 2014.01 Ms14 Ms20e 4-3 Ms14w 3-4 Ms19w 3-4 Ms28w 4-3 Ms23e 3-4 Ms29e 4-3
Oki Shikoroyama 1996/06/12 (6) 2013.07 Ms42 Sd11w 5-2 Ms52e 4-3 Ms42e 1-6 Sd7w 2-5 Sd32e 6-1 Ms49e 4-3
Asahiryu Asahiyama 1995/04/22 (16) 2016.05 Ms51   Mz 3-0 Jk23e 6-1 Jd45e 6-1 Sd79w 7-0 D Ms51e 6-1
Takakento Takanohana 1996/02/10 (10) 2014.01 Ms26 Sd29w 3-4 Sd42e 6-1 Ms55e 4-3 Ms46w 4-3 Ms36e 2-5 Ms52e 3-4
Gokushindo Nishikido 1996/06/06 (7) 2012.03 Ms28 Ms59e 6-1 Ms28e 0-0-7 Sd8e 4-3 Ms57w 4-3 Ms51e 3-4 Ms58w 3-4
Onojo Takadagawa 1996/01/31 (11) 2011.05 Ms60 Sd9w 2-5 Sd34e 5-2 Sd12w 3-4 Sd28w 4-3 Sd14w 4-3 Sd3w 0-7
Tochiseiryu Kasugano 1995/04/26 (15) 2014.03 Ms33 Sd7e 5-2 Ms47e 5-2 Ms33w 2-5 Ms54w 4-3 Ms47e 2-5 Sd4w 3-4
Kaiseio Asakayama 1995/01/28 (18) 2013.03 Ms18 Sd18w 5-2 Ms56w 6-1 Ms24w 4-3 Ms18w 2-5 Ms31e 0-7 Sd6w 5-2
Hamayutaka Tokitsukaze 1995/11/17 (13) 2011.05 Ms58 Sd77e 4-3 Sd57w 6-1 Sd5w 3-4 Sd22w 5-2 Ms59w 3-4 Sd11w 5-2
Nakazono Nishonoseki 1996/05/18 (8) 2012.03 Ms60 Sd21w 4-3 Sd11e 4-3 Ms60e 3-4 Sd12e 2-5 Sd40e 5-2 Sd13e 4-3
Tamakongo Kataonami 1995/09/19 (14) 2014.03 Ms56 Sd10w 3-4 Sd23w 4-3 Sd12e 3-4 Sd27e 3-4 Sd46w 5-2 Sd16e 3-4

Kaiseio turned 22 after the basho and is moving on to Tier 3.

One newcomer here as well:

Rikishi Heya DOB Debut HiRk 2016.03 2016.05 2016.07 2016.09 2016.11 2017.01
Shuji Kise 1995/10/24 2014.03 Sd17 Jk10w 1-0-6 Jk4e 1-0-6 Jk15w 7-0 Y Jd12e 7-0 Y Sd20w 2-5 Sd41w 6-1

Three years to makushita is a decent clip for a high school graduate, but the one-year review in the table already makes it clear: This hasn't been the smoothest of rides. Already at Sd17 after just eight tournaments, Shuji proceeded to miss most of the next year through injury, and has only been back to full competition for the last four tournaments. I have no idea if the 6-1 was a bit of a fluke, or if he has really come back with better-than-sandanme strength, but Haru basho will probably help us answer that question.

In any case, he's a big-time pusher-thruster who has so far achieved some 60% of his victories via oshidashi/taoshi and tsukidashi, with yori results making up half of the rest. At 174 cm / 135 kg he's pretty much sized like a younger Yoshikaze, who managed to get rather far with that style. (He's had to become more versatile since then, of course.) Hard to tell at this point if he's a genuine talent or just another short and stocky guy who'll run into the technique wall in makushita. If nothing else, he's got a lot of makushita- and juryo-strength practice partners in Kise-beya...

Edited by Asashosakari
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Tier 3:

Our sole juryo promotee of the basho hailed from this section, as sandanme tsukedashi starter Ishibashi (now Asanoyama) completed his one-year trek to the paid ranks in style, winning the Hatsu makushita yusho. Collegiate deshi were also responsible for further highlights here: Kizaki, Ichiki and makushita rookie Hatooka all posted 5 wins to maintain their debut KK streaks. Also steadily moving up is Goshi, whose 7th straight kachikoshi is bringing him to the promotion zone for the first time in Haru. Perennial promotion hopeful Masunosho bounced back from his November disappointment.

The other makushita debutant Chiyonokatsu found the division to be tough going for now, finishing only 2-5. Ikegawa, who had to miss his own shin-makushita tournament last time, will be getting another shot after strong 6 wins, and Chiyonoumi also added a 6-1 record in his continuing return from injury.

Heisei Hopefuls for Hatsu 2017 - Tier 3: Still Worth Watching - Age 23 and under
Rikishi Heya DOB Debut HiRk 2016.03 2016.05 2016.07 2016.09 2016.11 2017.01
Ishibashi Takasago 1994/03/01 (32) 2016.03 Ms7 Sd100Td 5-2 Sd66e 6-1 Sd11w 6-1 Ms36w 6-1 Ms14e 5-2 Ms7w 7-0 Y
Goshi Arashio 1993/10/05 (37) 2011.11 Ms7 Sd1w 6-1 Ms29e 4-3 Ms22w 4-3 Ms16w 4-3 Ms12w 4-3 Ms8e 4-3
Tamaki Takasago 1993/05/29 (44) 2016.01 Ms10 Jk19w 7-0 Y Jd10w 7-0 Y Sd19e 6-1 Ms41e 6-1 Ms17e 4-3 Ms10w 3-4
Masunosho Chiganoura 1994/11/14 (21) 2010.03 Ms6 Ms22e 5-2 Ms11e 3-4 Ms17e 4-3 Ms13w 5-2 Ms6e 2-5 Ms15e 5-2
Tsurubayashi Kise 1993/12/31 (35) 2009.03 Ms12 Ms18w 2-5 Ms35w 4-3 Ms29w 3-4 Ms39w 5-2 Ms28e 5-2 Ms18e 4-3
Kizaki Kise 1993/05/06 (45) 2016.03 Ms21 Mz 2-1 Jk15w 6-1 Jd38e 7-0 Y Sd39w 7-0 Y Ms26e 4-3 Ms21e 5-2
Ichiki Tamanoi 1993/11/13 (36) 2016.01 Ms24 Jk16e 6-1 Jd33e 6-1 Sd69e 6-1 Sd14e 5-2 Ms53w 6-1 Ms24w 5-2
Tochinobori Kasugano 1993/09/01 (39) 2009.03 Ms12 Ms12w 2-5 Ms30e 4-3 Ms24e 2-5 Ms41w 4-3 Ms31w 4-3 Ms26e 4-3
Kotokuzan Arashio 1994/03/11 (31) 2009.09 Ms28 Ms53e 0-0-7 Sd31w 4-3 Sd19w 4-3 Sd9e 6-1 Ms34w 4-3 Ms28w 2-5
Kotodaigo Sadogatake 1993/01/14 (48) 2011.05 Ms8 Jd44e 7-0 Y Sd44w 7-0 Y Ms28e 2-5 Ms48w 2-5 Sd10w 6-1 Ms34e 5-2
Rikito Tokitsukaze 1993/09/21 (38) 2011.09 Ms19 Ms59w 5-2 Ms41w 4-3 Ms33e 5-2 Ms19e 2-5 Ms32e 3-4 Ms38w 4-3
Rao Tatsunami 1993/03/30 (46) 2011.01 Ms37 Sd6e 3-4 Sd21e 5-2 Ms57e 5-2 Ms37e 1-6 Sd5e 5-2 Ms43e 3-4
Takakasuga Oitekaze 1993/03/06 (47) 2011.09 Ms23 Ms48e 5-2 Ms29w 4-3 Ms23e 3-4 Ms30w 3-4 Ms40e 3-4 Ms46w 4-3
Hatooka Kise 1994/02/23 (33) 2016.03 Ms50 Mz 2-0 Jk11w 6-1 Jd34w 6-1 Sd70w 6-1 Sd15e 5-2 Ms50w 5-2
Aonosho Dewanoumi 1993/06/03 (42) 2009.03 Ms29 Sd19w 6-1 Ms41e 4-3 Ms32w 2-5 Ms54e 4-3 Ms45e 3-4 Ms52w 5-2
Hokutokawa Hakkaku 1994/08/15 (24) 2013.03 Ms47 Sd20e 3-4 Sd34w 5-2 Sd13w 4-3 Sd5e 3-4 Sd19w 5-2 Ms55e 5-2
Hokutoshu Hakkaku 1994/01/14 (34) 2012.03 Ms50 Sd8e 5-2 Ms50w 2-5 Sd14e 3-4 Sd31w 5-2 Sd5w 4-3 Ms55w 2-5
Fukamiyama Onoe 1994/11/12 (22) 2010.03 Ms47 Ms60e 3-4 Sd13w 5-2 Ms52w 3-4 Sd4e 5-2 Ms49e 3-4 Ms56w 4-3
Chiyonokatsu Kokonoe 1994/04/13 (30) 2013.03 Ms57 Sd46e 4-3 Sd28w 5-2 Sd2w 2-5 Sd28e 3-4 Sd48e 6-1 Ms57e 2-5
Kirinofuji Michinoku 1994/07/28 (25) 2011.01 Ms52 Sd14w 2-5 Sd40e 4-3 Sd26e 5-2 Sd1w 2-5 Sd24e 5-2 Ms59e 3-4
Musashikuni Musashigawa 1994/12/17 (19) 2013.07 Ms26 Sd13w 4-3 Sd5w 4-3 Ms54w 6-1 Ms26e 2-5 Ms43w 2-5 Ms59w 5-2
Nishiyama Onoe 1994/04/27 (28) 2010.03 Ms22 Sd2e 4-3 Ms54e 3-4 Sd1e 3-4 Sd14w 5-2 Ms54e 3-4 Sd2e 3-4
Chiyonoumi Kokonoe 1993/01/11 (49) 2015.05 Ms13 Ms13e 0-0-7 Ms53w 0-0-7 Sd33w 0-0-7 Sd94e 6-1 Sd36e 5-2 Sd7e 6-1
Kotohayato Sadogatake 1994/04/18 (29) 2010.03 Ms60 Sd68w 5-2 Sd39e 4-3 Sd24e 4-3 Sd11w 4-3 Ms60w 3-4 Sd12w 3-4
Kotonoshu Sadogatake 1994/07/01 (26) 2010.03 Ms53 Sd26e 4-3 Sd15w 2-5 Sd41e 5-2 Sd16w 3-4 Sd31e 4-3 Sd14w 4-3
Ikegawa Hakkaku 1993/06/02 (43) 2016.03 Ms41 Mz 2-0 Jk10w 7-0 Y Jd10e 7-0 D Sd19w 6-1 Ms41w 0-0-7 Sd21e 6-1
Sakae Sakaigawa 1994/11/19 (20) 2013.03 Ms55 Sd17w 5-2 Ms55w 3-4 Sd4w 3-4 Sd20w 0-0-7 Sd81e 6-1 Sd23w 4-3
Baraki Shikihide 1994/05/10 (27) 2013.01 Ms58 Sd41w 2-5 Sd68e 4-3 Sd49w 3-4 Sd63e 4-3 Sd44e 4-3 Sd25e 3-4
Shinohara Onomatsu 1993/08/21 (40) 2012.01 Ms28 Ms57e 4-3 Ms48w 4-3 Ms41e 3-4 Ms53e 2-5 Sd16e 3-4 Sd30e 5-2
Aomihama Dewanoumi 1994/10/27 (23) 2010.03 Ms49 Sd8w 3-4 Sd21w 2-5 Sd47e 4-3 Sd31e 3-4 Sd50w 3-4 Sd61e 6-1
Haguroho Tatsunami 1993/07/08 (41) 2009.03 Ms20 Sd28w 6-1 Ms47w 3-4 Ms56e 2-5 Sd15e 0-0-7 Sd76e 0-0-7 Jd36w 4-3

Kotodaigo and Chiyonoumi have turned 24, but as former top 15 guys they'll be getting another two years to prove themselves in Tier 4. Haguroho decided to call it quits, so we're saying goodbye to a youngster who looked like quite the talent four years ago at age 20, before injuries began to derail him repeatedly.

[If you call in the next fifteen minutes you'll get] Not one, but two newcomers plan to make their mark in Haru basho:

Rikishi Heya DOB Debut HiRk 2016.03 2016.05 2016.07 2016.09 2016.11 2017.01
Kaizen Asakayama 1993/07/29 2016.01 Sd8 Jk16w 6-1 Jd33w 5-2 Sd96w 6-1 Sd36w 2-5 Sd62e 6-1 Sd8e 4-3
Takemasa Onomatsu 1993/10/22 2016.03 Sd16 Mz 2-0 Jk14e 5-2 Jd59w 6-1 Sd92e 6-1 Sd33w 4-3 Sd16w 7-0 Y

Surprise, yet another two collegiates, though at least they're not from the usual suspects. Kaizen hails from Asahi University, not really known for much of anything in the sumo realm except originating Tokushinho, while Takemasa attended Meiji University, somewhat better known in the amateur sumo circles but largely an also-ran as a program. As usual it's hard to judge gakusei rikishi before they've done anything in makushita. Takemasa has come in with at least some pedigree, and there's no arguing with that sandanme yusho (which he secured against very decent opposition), but I'm somewhat doubtful about Kaizen's chances of breaking through the always tough makushita competition.

Edited by Asashosakari
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Tier 4:

Good bounceback tournament for Iwasaki with 6 wins. Tochimaru and Shiba both lost out on a possible promotion by dropping their 7th bout against juryo rookie Terutsuyoshi on Days 14 and 15, falling to makekoshi in the process. The rest of this tier in January - the less said, the better. Okay, Wakayama did secure the jonokuchi yusho via 6-1 playoff in his return from injury, but he's got a long way to go to put himself back into the makushita-joi mix.

Heisei Hopefuls for Nagoya 2016 - Tier 4: Last Chance Saloon - Ms15+ Age 25 and under
Rikishi Heya DOB Debut HiRk 2016.03 2016.05 2016.07 2016.09 2016.11 2017.01
Tochimaru Kasugano 1992/08/26 (52) 2011.05 Ms3 Ms5w 1-5-1 Ms22e 4-3 Ms18e 5-2 Ms9w 5-2 Ms4w 4-3 Ms3w 3-4
Shiba Kise 1991/12/24 (58) 2014.03 Ms3 Ms6e 3-4 Ms11w 2-4-1 Ms28w 6-1 Ms11e 4-3 Ms8w 5-2 Ms5e 3-4
Iwasaki Oitekaze 1992/04/24 (54) 2015.01 Ms3 Ms19w 4-3 Ms13w 4-3 Ms10w 4-3 Ms7w 5-2 Ms3e 2-5 Ms10e 6-1
Daiseido Kise 1992/12/30 (50) 2011.05 Ms3 Ms30e 2-5 Ms50e 5-2 Ms36e 4-3 Ms28e 4-3 Ms22e 5-2 Ms11w 3-4
Irodori Shikoroyama 1992/03/10 (56) 2007.03 Ms8 Ms16e 3-4 Ms26e 5-2 Ms17w 4-3 Ms14w 5-2 Ms8e 3-4 Ms12e 3-4
Kotokobai Sadogatake 1991/03/31 (60) 2006.03 Ms7 Ms42w 5-2 Ms25e 5-2 Ms16e 2-3-2 Ms31e 3-4 Ms41e 5-2 Ms26w 4-3
Akinokawa Takadagawa 1992/11/30 (51) 2008.03 Ms6 Ms14e 5-2 Ms6e 3-4 Ms11e 3-4 Ms16e 4-3 Ms10w 1-6 Ms31w 3-4
Sasakiyama Kise 1991/06/12 (59) 2010.01 Ms15 Ms43w 4-3 Ms36e 3-4 Ms42w 4-3 Ms34e 3-4 Ms45w 4-3 Ms36e 4-3
Ayanoumi Yamahibiki 1992/03/23 (55) 2007.03 Ms14 Ms23e 2-5 Ms43w 3-4 Ms51w 4-3 Ms44w 3-4 Ms55e 5-2 Ms37e 4-3
Onami Arashio 1991/12/29 (57) 2009.11 Ms11 Ms32e 5-2 Ms20e 4-3 Ms14w 4-3 Ms11w 1-2-4 Ms30w 0-0-7 Sd10w 5-2
Wakayama Onomatsu 1992/04/26 (53) 2011.07 Ms15 Sd61w 0-0-7 Jd21w 0-0-7 Jd91w 0-0-7 Jk25e 0-0-7 Mz 3-0 Jk16w 6-1 Y

No departures and no newbies down here this time around.

Edited by Asashosakari
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The lineups for Haru 2017:

Tier 1 (Q) - All eyes on Takagenji, obviously, but up here all five rikishi merit attention as always. Can Kotokamatani bounce back in strong fashion this time?

Tier 2 (Q) - Just like last basho, nothing terribly interesting here per se, though with Kiribayama's arrival to the extended promotion zone, at least we can hope for a surprise yusho and promotion... Personally, I'm mainly looking forward to see what wildcard newcomer Shuji will do.

Tier 3 (Q) - I'm having a déjà vu moment, so I'll just quote last basho's comment: "This section will likely continue to be the gakusei show for the foreseeable future." Yup, still true. Non-university guy Goshi is in the top 5 ranks, and he's the only one at that, but from Ms5w he'll probably need 6 wins to make himself part of any promotion talk.

Tier 4 (Q) - Iwasaki with another shot at promotion, and from exactly the same rank as four months ago; hopefully with a more favourable outcome.

Edit: I forgot to mention that Yutakasho in Tier 3 was previously known as Sakae.

Edited by Asashosakari

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That awkward situation when you have to find someone who was present in the hospital room to confirm which twin entered the world first so you know whether or not to send Takayoshitoshi down to the 2nd Tier of Heisei hopefuls.

Aside from making lame jokes too, I'm gonna crash this Heisei hopeful thread and give a shout out to SHUNBA who at 35 years old has his debut in Makushita and is trucking along at 2-0. Showa hopefuls!!

Edited by Tsuchinoninjin
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4 hours ago, John Gunning said:

I'm sure you know but....

He has three brothers with sumo experience. Two in the same heya. One is Mitoyutaka. Another is still a yobidashi there. The third is Takadagawa's Tsurunoumi. Think their father might have been a rikishi too.

I appreciate the reminder, actually. (Noddingyes...) That stuff is somewhere in the back of my mind, but the family connections didn't register at all when I wrote the promotion blurb on him last week.
 

14 minutes ago, Tsuchinoninjin said:

That awkward situation when you have to find someone who was present in the hospital room to confirm which twin entered the world first so you know whether or not to send Takayoshitoshi down to the 2nd Tier of Heisei hopefuls.

You underestimate the thoroughness of the sumo beat writers' news coverage! B-)

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The Haru results...

Tier 1:

Second time was the charm for Takagenji as he added another kachikoshi in the makushita promotion zone and this time he was up high enough to grab one of the available promotion slots, so after exactly a year we'll be having our next reset of the yardstick rikishi.

Takagenji's minimally older twin brother Takayoshitoshi and Nishikido-beya's Honda will be relegated to Tier 2, while Shonannoumi and Kotokamatani are young enough to remain in the running to become the next youngest sekitori. Kotokamatani will be the higher-ranked of the pair after returning to KK territory in March, but for both of them juryo remains rather far off for now.

Honda had the expected tough time in his makushita debut, going 2-5.
 

Heisei Hopefuls for Haru 2017 - Tier 1: Top Talents - current yardstick: Takakeisho (1996/08/05, debut 2014.09, shin-juryo 2016.05)
Rikishi Heya DOB Debut HiRk 2016.05 2016.07 2016.09 2016.11 2017.01 2017.03
Takagenji Takanohana 1997/05/13 (3) 2013.03 Ms1 Ms36w 5-2 Ms25w 4-3 Ms20e 6-1 Ms7e 5-2 Ms4w 5-2 Ms1w 4-3
Takayoshitoshi Takanohana 1997/05/13 (3) 2013.03 Ms11 Ms45w 3-4 Ms53w 6-1 Ms24w 2-5 Ms39e 4-3 Ms30w 6-1 Ms11e 2-5
Shonannoumi Takadagawa 1998/04/08 (1) 2014.03 Ms40 Sd29e 4-3 Sd18e 4-3 Sd8w 4-3 Ms59e 4-3 Ms48w 4-3 Ms40e 3-4
Honda Nishikido 1997/03/11 (5) 2012.03 Ms52 Sd69e 5-2 Sd40w 3-4 Sd57w 5-2 Sd28e 5-2 Sd3e 4-3 Ms52w 2-5
Kotokamatani Sadogatake 1997/11/19 (2) 2015.11 Ms43 Sd49e 5-2 Sd24w 5-2 Ms59w 5-2 Ms43e 3-4 Ms50e 3-4 Sd3w 5-2


Three youngsters fulfilled the requirements of the old yardstick, but only one of them will actually get to debut at the top prospect level:

Rikishi Heya DOB Debut HiRk 2016.05 2016.07 2016.09 2016.11 2017.01 2017.03
Midorifuji Isegahama 1996/08/30 2016.09 Sd19     Mz 3-0 Jk21w 7-0 D Jd10w 7-0 D Sd19w 5-2
Yokuyusei Shibatayama 1998/09/10 2014.03 Sd21 Jd44w 5-2 Jd4e 5-2 Sd68e 3-4 Sd78w 5-2 Sd44w 5-2 Sd21w 5-2
Ohata Tokitsukaze 1996/10/24 2014.11 Sd32 Sd49w 4-3 Sd34w 3-4 Sd52w 4-3 Sd34w 3-4 Sd48e 4-3 Sd32w 6-1

Yokuyusei (Kyokai profile) is our newest entrant up here. Having made his debut three years ago, 18 months of slow but steady early advancement brought him up to sandanme in time for his 17th birthday. After a brief injury absence sent him back to mid-jonidan, he picked right up again and one year and 5 KK later he is now set to make his makushita debut. He's not especially tall at 178 cm, but looking at recent bouts he appears to have built a very solid body for his age and level, with some 20 kg added since debut for a current weight in the 125 kg range.

The videographic evidence is in support of his kimarite profile: Tenacious and happy to get inside on his opponents, yori techniques are accounting for 60% of Yokuyusei's wins, the rest split between pushing and throwing. His advancement speed thus far is pretty remarkable for a deshi that didn't attract any particular attention on joining, and while things will necessarily slow down now that he has reached makushita, I wouldn't be surprised to see him keep moving up. As so often, one key will be his continued physical development as 178 / 125 probably won't be enough to make serious inroads into makushita.

Midorifuji is two years older (and actually lost to Yokuyusei last basho), but he has already received a lot more publicity courtesy of the back-to-back 7-0's he shared with stablemate and fellow Kindai University dropout Nishikifuji to start their careers. Four basho to makushita is impressive for any rikishi who's not a full-fledged university graduate, but his size of 168 cm / 91 kg leaves me doubtful that his stuff will continue to work against better opponents, at least in the short run.

Ohata joined out of high school, but came in with a much different physique of 186 cm / 138 kg. He seemingly hasn't changed much in size (the Kyokai has him at 146 kg now), and after a quick blast through jonokuchi and jonidan in one basho apiece he found sandanme rather more difficult. Following exactly two years in the division he now makes his makushita debut, but it's coming off a 6-1 record which always raises a bit of a red flag for me. Natsu basho will tell if it was just a fluky strong result or if he has truly advanced beyond the upper-mid sandanme level he had spent the last year+ at. Kimarite-wise he looks like almost a carbon copy of Yokuyusei, just trading off some of the throws for slapdowns.

Edited by Asashosakari
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Tier 2:

Very decent results here at level two in March. Fourth straight kachikoshi for Hakuyozan as he continues to battle back from last year's setback, and Mongolian duo Kiribayama and Asahiryu had credible 3 wins at their career high positions. Makushita debutant Shuji was the only one to do badly, looking not very genki with some big taping on his right knee and missing two bouts in the middle of the tournament, to boot.

All six tier members ranked below makushita were kachikoshi, which is always nice to see, and their results included an impressive 6-1 by Nakazono (very close to his highest rank) and a surprise 7-0 yusho by Tamakongo.
 

Heisei Hopefuls for Haru 2017 - Tier 2: Promising Youngsters - Age 21 and under
Rikishi Heya DOB Debut HiRk 2016.05 2016.07 2016.09 2016.11 2017.01 2017.03
Hakuyozan Takadagawa 1995/04/13 (19) 2011.05 Ms1 Ms1e 2-5 Ms9w 2-5 Ms27e 4-3 Ms20w 4-3 Ms14e 4-3 Ms11w 5-2
Kiribayama Michinoku 1996/04/24 (10) 2015.05 Ms12 Sd3e 6-1 Ms30e 0-0-7 Sd11e 6-1 Ms35e 5-2 Ms20e 5-2 Ms12w 3-4
Asahiryu Asahiyama 1995/04/22 (18) 2016.05 Ms23 Mz 3-0 Jk23e 6-1 Jd45e 6-1 Sd79w 7-0 D Ms51e 6-1 Ms23e 3-4
Kotaro Fujishima 1995/12/06 (13) 2014.01 Ms14 Ms14w 3-4 Ms19w 3-4 Ms28w 4-3 Ms23e 3-4 Ms29e 4-3 Ms25w 4-3
Kaito Asakayama 1996/06/19 (6) 2012.05 Ms22 Sd11w 3-4 Sd22e 5-2 Ms58e 6-1 Ms27w 4-3 Ms22e 3-4 Ms32w 5-2
Oki Shikoroyama 1996/06/12 (7) 2013.07 Ms42 Ms52e 4-3 Ms42e 1-6 Sd7w 2-5 Sd32e 6-1 Ms49e 4-3 Ms42w 3-4
Hamayutaka Tokitsukaze 1995/11/17 (14) 2011.05 Ms48 Sd57w 6-1 Sd5w 3-4 Sd22w 5-2 Ms59w 3-4 Sd11w 5-2 Ms48w 4-3
Shuji Kise 1995/10/24 (15) 2014.03 Ms54 Jk4e 1-0-6 Jk15w 7-0 Y Jd12e 7-0 Y Sd20w 2-5 Sd41w 6-1 Ms54w 1-5-1
Nakazono Nishonoseki 1996/05/18 (9) 2012.03 Ms60 Sd11e 4-3 Ms60e 3-4 Sd12e 2-5 Sd40e 5-2 Sd13e 4-3 Sd2w 6-1
Takakento Takanohana 1996/02/10 (11) 2014.01 Ms26 Sd42e 6-1 Ms55e 4-3 Ms46w 4-3 Ms36e 2-5 Ms52e 3-4 Sd8e 4-3
Gokushindo Nishikido 1996/06/06 (8) 2012.03 Ms28 Ms28e 0-0-7 Sd8e 4-3 Ms57w 4-3 Ms51e 3-4 Ms58w 3-4 Sd13w 6-1
Tochiseiryu Kasugano 1995/04/26 (17) 2014.03 Ms33 Ms47e 5-2 Ms33w 2-5 Ms54w 4-3 Ms47e 2-5 Sd4w 3-4 Sd24w 4-3
Tamakongo Kataonami 1995/09/19 (16) 2014.03 Ms56 Sd23w 4-3 Sd12e 3-4 Sd27e 3-4 Sd46w 5-2 Sd16e 3-4 Sd35w 7-0 Y
Onojo Takadagawa 1996/01/31 (12) 2011.05 Ms60 Sd34e 5-2 Sd12w 3-4 Sd28w 4-3 Sd14w 4-3 Sd3w 0-7 Sd53w 5-2


No newcomers here, but lots of reassignments for the next edition with those 4 demotions/additions from Tier 1, and 3 rikishi likewise moving down from here: Hakuyozan, Asahiryu and Tochiseiryu have turned 22 and will continue in Tier 3.

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Tier 3:

Conversely, not a lot of sunshine in our biggest section. Out of 30 rikishi only 12 finished kachikoshi, only 4 posted more than 4 wins, and 3 rikishi from that quartet weren't anywhere near their career highs.

Goshi had an okay debut in the promotion zone with a 3-4 record, missing out on his KK only in the last bout. Masunosho had 4 wins at Ms8 as he tries to crack the promotion zone himself.

Outside of these two quasi-veterans of the Hopefuls watch, most eyes were on the recent arrivals from the college scene again: In the top 15 ranks Kizaki (5-2) and January sandanme yusho winner Takemasa (4-3) extended their debut KK streaks to 6 tournaments, as did Hatooka with a 4-3 (but at a significantly lower position), while Ichiki saw his streak end with a 3-4.

On the other hand, fellow 2016 rookies Tamaki (back-to-back 3-4's), Ikegawa and Kaizen (both 3-4 in the lower half of makushita) appear to have found their level for now, somewhat far away from contention for juryo.
 

Heisei Hopefuls for Haru 2017 - Tier 3: Still Worth Watching - Age 23 and under
Rikishi Heya DOB Debut HiRk 2016.05 2016.07 2016.09 2016.11 2017.01 2017.03
Goshi Arashio 1993/10/05 (39) 2011.11 Ms5 Ms29e 4-3 Ms22w 4-3 Ms16w 4-3 Ms12w 4-3 Ms8e 4-3 Ms5w 3-4
Masunosho Chiganoura 1994/11/14 (23) 2010.03 Ms6 Ms11e 3-4 Ms17e 4-3 Ms13w 5-2 Ms6e 2-5 Ms15e 5-2 Ms8e 4-3
Takemasa Onomatsu 1993/10/22 (38) 2016.03 Ms13 Jk14e 5-2 Jd59w 6-1 Sd92e 6-1 Sd33w 4-3 Sd16w 7-0 Y Ms13e 4-3
Kizaki Kise 1993/05/06 (47) 2016.03 Ms13 Jk15w 6-1 Jd38e 7-0 Y Sd39w 7-0 Y Ms26e 4-3 Ms21e 5-2 Ms13w 5-2
Tsurubayashi Kise 1993/12/31 (36) 2009.03 Ms12 Ms35w 4-3 Ms29w 3-4 Ms39w 5-2 Ms28e 5-2 Ms18e 4-3 Ms14w 4-3
Tamaki Takasago 1993/05/29 (46) 2016.01 Ms10 Jd10w 7-0 Y Sd19e 6-1 Ms41e 6-1 Ms17e 4-3 Ms10w 3-4 Ms15e 3-4
Ichiki Tamanoi 1993/11/13 (37) 2016.01 Ms16 Jd33e 6-1 Sd69e 6-1 Sd14e 5-2 Ms53w 6-1 Ms24w 5-2 Ms16w 3-4
Tochinobori Kasugano 1993/09/01 (41) 2009.03 Ms12 Ms30e 4-3 Ms24e 2-5 Ms41w 4-3 Ms31w 4-3 Ms26e 4-3 Ms22e 3-4
Rikito Tokitsukaze 1993/09/21 (40) 2011.09 Ms19 Ms41w 4-3 Ms33e 5-2 Ms19e 2-5 Ms32e 3-4 Ms38w 4-3 Ms34w 2-5
Hatooka Kise 1994/02/23 (34) 2016.03 Ms36 Jk11w 6-1 Jd34w 6-1 Sd70w 6-1 Sd15e 5-2 Ms50w 5-2 Ms36e 4-3
Takakasuga Nakagawa 1993/03/06 (49) 2011.09 Ms23 Ms29w 4-3 Ms23e 3-4 Ms30w 3-4 Ms40e 3-4 Ms46w 4-3 Ms36w 3-4
Aonosho Dewanoumi 1993/06/03 (44) 2009.03 Ms29 Ms41e 4-3 Ms32w 2-5 Ms54e 4-3 Ms45e 3-4 Ms52w 5-2 Ms37e 2-5
Hokutokawa Hakkaku 1994/08/15 (26) 2013.03 Ms39 Sd34w 5-2 Sd13w 4-3 Sd5e 3-4 Sd19w 5-2 Ms55e 5-2 Ms39e 3-4
Musashikuni Musashigawa 1994/12/17 (21) 2013.07 Ms26 Sd5w 4-3 Ms54w 6-1 Ms26e 2-5 Ms43w 2-5 Ms59w 5-2 Ms41w 3-4
Ikegawa Hakkaku 1993/06/02 (45) 2016.03 Ms41 Jk10w 7-0 Y Jd10e 7-0 D Sd19w 6-1 Ms41w 0-0-7 Sd21e 6-1 Ms42e 3-4
Kaiseio Asakayama 1995/01/28 (20) 2013.03 Ms18 Ms56w 6-1 Ms24w 4-3 Ms18w 2-5 Ms31e 0-7 Sd6w 5-2 Ms46w 5-2
Fukamiyama Onoe 1994/11/12 (24) 2010.03 Ms47 Sd13w 5-2 Ms52w 3-4 Sd4e 5-2 Ms49e 3-4 Ms56w 4-3 Ms47e 2-5
Kotokuzan Arashio 1994/03/11 (33) 2009.09 Ms28 Sd31w 4-3 Sd19w 4-3 Sd9e 6-1 Ms34w 4-3 Ms28w 2-5 Ms50e 5-2
Rao Tatsunami 1993/03/30 (48) 2011.01 Ms37 Sd21e 5-2 Ms57e 5-2 Ms37e 1-6 Sd5e 5-2 Ms43e 3-4 Ms56e 3-4
Kaizen Asakayama 1993/07/29 (43) 2016.01 Ms57 Jd33w 5-2 Sd96w 6-1 Sd36w 2-5 Sd62e 6-1 Sd8e 4-3 Ms57e 3-4
Kotonoshu Sadogatake 1994/07/01 (28) 2010.03 Ms53 Sd15w 2-5 Sd41e 5-2 Sd16w 3-4 Sd31e 4-3 Sd14w 4-3 Sd4e 1-5-1
Shinohara Onomatsu 1993/08/21 (42) 2012.01 Ms28 Ms48w 4-3 Ms41e 3-4 Ms53e 2-5 Sd16e 3-4 Sd30e 5-2 Sd6e 2-5
Aomihama Dewanoumi 1994/10/27 (25) 2010.03 Ms49 Sd21w 2-5 Sd47e 4-3 Sd31e 3-4 Sd50w 3-4 Sd61e 6-1 Sd7e 4-3
Yutakasho Sakaigawa 1994/11/19 (22) 2013.03 Ms55 Ms55w 3-4 Sd4w 3-4 Sd20w 0-0-7 Sd81e 6-1 Sd23w 4-3 Sd12w 3-4
Kirinofuji Michinoku 1994/07/28 (27) 2011.01 Ms52 Sd40e 4-3 Sd26e 5-2 Sd1w 2-5 Sd24e 5-2 Ms59e 3-4 Sd14w 2-5
Hokutoshu Hakkaku 1994/01/14 (35) 2012.03 Ms50 Ms50w 2-5 Sd14e 3-4 Sd31w 5-2 Sd5w 4-3 Ms55w 2-5 Sd16e 4-3
Nishiyama Onoe 1994/04/27 (30) 2010.03 Ms22 Ms54e 3-4 Sd1e 3-4 Sd14w 5-2 Ms54e 3-4 Sd2e 3-4 Sd17w 4-3
Chiyonokatsu Kokonoe 1994/04/13 (32) 2013.03 Ms57 Sd28w 5-2 Sd2w 2-5 Sd28e 3-4 Sd48e 6-1 Ms57e 2-5 Sd22w 4-3
Kotohayato Sadogatake 1994/04/18 (31) 2010.03 Ms60 Sd39e 4-3 Sd24e 4-3 Sd11w 4-3 Ms60w 3-4 Sd12w 3-4 Sd31w 6-1
Baraki Shikihide 1994/05/10 (29) 2013.01 Ms58 Sd68e 4-3 Sd49w 3-4 Sd63e 4-3 Sd44e 4-3 Sd25e 3-4 Sd45e 3-4


Takakasuga (since renamed to Tanegashima) and Rao have seen their prospect eligibility expire upon turning 24. At this point in their careers neither looks like he'll be challenging for a kesho-mawashi, though perhaps Takakasuga was negatively affected by the mess surrounding the Kasugayama-kabu and -beya over the last year. As always, Tier 4 will be there for a prospect return, should he make it to makushita-joi in the next couple of years.

Four newcomers are joining us:

Rikishi Heya DOB Debut HiRk 2016.05 2016.07 2016.09 2016.11 2017.01 2017.03
Itadaki Isenoumi 1994/09/05 2010.03 Sd16 Sd25e 2-5 Sd50w 3-2-2 Sd64w 4-3 Sd46e 4-3 Sd29w 4-3 Sd16w 5-2
Tsushimanada Sakaigawa 1993/06/27 2016.05 Sd21 Mz 0-0-5 Mz 3-0 Jk26e 6-1 Jd45w 6-1 Sd78e 6-1 Sd21e 6-1

He'll be part of the Hopefuls for the next year and a half, but I'll be honest: As a 22-year-old with 7 years of experience and making his makushita debut only now, Itadaki really isn't that much of a prospect. After gaining almost no weight in his first 3 years and struggling to break out of jonidan, he has since added 30 kg, which is rather a lot for a passage just from high jonidan to high sandanme, and makes me think that the rest of his game probably hasn't really come along too far. His kimarite are all over the place with yori/oshi accounting for about half of his wins and the rest a total hodgepodge of throws, slapdowns and even multiple leg-trip techniques. I could call it "versatile", but I suspect it's more that he doesn't have any particular strengths.

Tsushimanada, on the other hand, is yet another 2016 collegiate entrant. While I've personally enjoyed a lot of what I've seen of him on video, I'm rather skeptical of his sekitori potential. That said, Sakaigawa-beya's a decent enough environment so maybe he'll surprise. His technique level is fairly impressive, in any case, but he'll definitely need to add a bunch of weight to be competitive further up in makushita. Having barely made it into sumo at all before his 23rd birthday he is now only a month away from turning 24, so Natsu will be his only basho in Tier 3, with the rest to come in Tier 4 when (or rather, if) he makes it to Ms15 and above.

In addition, the two incoming makushita tsukedashi Mitoryu and Yago will also be entering this tier.

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Tier 4:

Iwasaki improved significantly on his first promotion zone go-around from four months earlier, going 4-3 instead of 2-5 this time, but with only two slots opening up in juryo it wasn't enough to earn promotion.

Recent top 5 rankers Tochimaru and Shiba went the opposite way with each getting their second straight makekoshi, so it'll be a while before they're contending again. Former top prospect Sasakiyama, who's been going in circles in the middle ranks for the last couple of years, posted a strong 6-1 score, and returning Wakayama picked up his second consecutive yusho, albeit only in jonidan. He is the second rikishi in history to win two yusho apiece in jonokuchi and jonidan.
 

Heisei Hopefuls for Haru 2017 - Tier 4: Last Chance Saloon - Ms15+ Age 25 and under
Rikishi Heya DOB Debut HiRk 2016.05 2016.07 2016.09 2016.11 2017.01 2017.03
Iwasaki Oitekaze 1992/04/24 (56) 2015.01 Ms3 Ms13w 4-3 Ms10w 4-3 Ms7w 5-2 Ms3e 2-5 Ms10e 6-1 Ms3e 4-3
Tochimaru Kasugano 1992/08/26 (54) 2011.05 Ms3 Ms22e 4-3 Ms18e 5-2 Ms9w 5-2 Ms4w 4-3 Ms3w 3-4 Ms7e 2-5
Shiba Kise 1991/12/24 (60) 2014.03 Ms3 Ms11w 2-4-1 Ms28w 6-1 Ms11e 4-3 Ms8w 5-2 Ms5e 3-4 Ms8w 1-6
Daiseido Kise 1992/12/30 (52) 2011.05 Ms3 Ms50e 5-2 Ms36e 4-3 Ms28e 4-3 Ms22e 5-2 Ms11w 3-4 Ms18e 5-2
Irodori Shikoroyama 1992/03/10 (58) 2007.03 Ms8 Ms26e 5-2 Ms17w 4-3 Ms14w 5-2 Ms8e 3-4 Ms12e 3-4 Ms18w 5-2
Kotodaigo Sadogatake 1993/01/14 (50) 2011.05 Ms8 Sd44w 7-0 Y Ms28e 2-5 Ms48w 2-5 Sd10w 6-1 Ms34e 5-2 Ms21w 4-3
Kotokobai Sadogatake 1991/03/31 (62) 2006.03 Ms7 Ms25e 5-2 Ms16e 2-3-2 Ms31e 3-4 Ms41e 5-2 Ms26w 4-3 Ms22w 4-3
Sasakiyama Kise 1991/06/12 (61) 2010.01 Ms15 Ms36e 3-4 Ms42w 4-3 Ms34e 3-4 Ms45w 4-3 Ms36e 4-3 Ms31e 6-1
Chiyonoumi Kokonoe 1993/01/11 (51) 2015.05 Ms13 Ms53w 0-0-7 Sd33w 0-0-7 Sd94e 6-1 Sd36e 5-2 Sd7e 6-1 Ms32e 4-3
Ayanoumi Yamahibiki 1992/03/23 (57) 2007.03 Ms14 Ms43w 3-4 Ms51w 4-3 Ms44w 3-4 Ms55e 5-2 Ms37e 4-3 Ms33w 1-6
Akinokawa Takadagawa 1992/11/30 (53) 2008.03 Ms6 Ms6e 3-4 Ms11e 3-4 Ms16e 4-3 Ms10w 1-6 Ms31w 3-4 Ms43w 4-3
Onami Arashio 1991/12/29 (59) 2009.11 Ms11 Ms20e 4-3 Ms14w 4-3 Ms11w 1-2-4 Ms30w 0-0-7 Sd10w 5-2 Ms48e 4-3
Wakayama Onomatsu 1992/04/26 (55) 2011.07 Ms15 Jd21w 0-0-7 Jd91w 0-0-7 Jk25e 0-0-7 Mz 3-0 Jk16w 6-1 Y Jd32e 7-0 Y


Kotokobai is 26 now and no longer a prospect on our terms. Sadogatake-beya does have a reputation for producing late-bloomer sekitori (last seen in Kotomisen), so perhaps he still has a shot at becoming the next one. No additions for Natsu in this tier.

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The lineups for Natsu 2017:

Tier 1 (Q) - Time to see who can take the lead here en route to the next juryo debut. Perhaps somebody who isn't even in makushita yet?

Tier 2 (Q) - Nobody in the top 15 ranks, but we do have some interesting stories: Fast-rising Kiribayama will try to bounce back from his makekoshi, and Takayoshitoshi should be motivated to catch back up to his now-sekitori twin. Also, how will Tamakongo follow up on his very unexpected zensho yusho?

Tier 3 (Q) - No immediate promotion candidates outside of a possible 7-0, but plenty of guys who will try to make their mark over the next few tournaments, including the new tsukedashi duo.

Tier 4 (Q) - Next chance for Iwasaki to join brother Hidenoumi in juryo. And we'll probably find out how good Wakayama now is, post-injury.

Shikona changes: Brothers Goshi and Onami have changed to Wakamotoharu and Wakatakamoto, and Akinokawa is now known as Akinohana.

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Natsu results...

Tier 1:

Things look to be a bit slow-going here as expected and the next youngest sekitori could still be a ways off this time. Kotokamatani started off hot with three wins, but only finished with the minimum KK in the end - which was still a lot better than our other two youngsters did, who will both be regrouping in sandanme in July.
 

Heisei Hopefuls for Natsu 2017 - Tier 1: Top Talents - current yardstick: Takagenji (1997/05/13, debut 2013.03, shin-juryo 2017.05)
Rikishi Heya DOB Debut HiRk 2016.07 2016.09 2016.11 2017.01 2017.03 2017.05
Kotokamatani Sadogatake 1997/11/19 (3) 2015.11 Ms43 Sd24w 5-2 Ms59w 5-2 Ms43e 3-4 Ms50e 3-4 Sd3w 5-2 Ms46e 4-3
Shonannoumi Takadagawa 1998/04/08 (2) 2014.03 Ms40 Sd18e 4-3 Sd8w 4-3 Ms59e 4-3 Ms48w 4-3 Ms40e 3-4 Ms48e 1-6
Yokuyusei Shibatayama 1998/09/10 (1) 2014.03 Ms58 Jd4e 5-2 Sd68e 3-4 Sd78w 5-2 Sd44w 5-2 Sd21w 5-2 Ms58e 2-5


This section will slowly be expanding again as more young prospects reach makushita, and starting things off is...

Rikishi Heya DOB Debut HiRk 2016.07 2016.09 2016.11 2017.01 2017.03 2017.05
Kirinoryu Michinoku 1997/06/13 2013.03 Sd12 Sd55e 3-4 Sd71w 4-3 Sd51w 4-3 Sd31w 3-4 Sd50e 5-2 Sd24e 5-2

I try to keep half an eye on promising rikishi in sandanme and below, but Kirinoryu has snuck up on me a bit. He did make waves early on, reaching sandanme only a year after his debut and still aged 16, but had a rude 1-6 awakening there and then failed to complete half of his next 6 tournaments. He has had an up and down career in the two years since, but steady results in the most recent handful of basho have pushed him up from the lower sandanme ranks to an upcoming makushita debut, in time for his 20th birthday.

There's not much video of his efforts thus far, and from what little that's out there it seems that his preferred style is straight forward-moving sumo, mawashi grip optional, leading to a somewhat odd kimarite profile that's heavy on both oshidashi and yorikiri. In addition there's a smattering of throwing techniques on his tally, but very few pulldowns. I think that could play fairly well in lower makushita, but in the long run he'll need to develop a lot both in technique and physique - IMHO he's not the kind of eye-popping prospect that already has all the tools and just needs to harness them. He does look pretty big in the handful of videos, but according to the Kyokai's updated stats he's basically still the same weight he was on his debut four years ago (129 -> 133 kg).

Edited by Asashosakari
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Tier 2:

Big basho for Kiribayama! Everybody was all aflutter about big Mitoryu's professional debut last month, but the lanky youngster had a turn in the makushita yusho race and eventually finished with 6 wins to stake his claim as the current Mongolian top prospect despite the arrival of a university champion.

Once again this section wasn't hurting for strong performances altogether, with 11 KK among the 15 members and three more 6-1 records. Perhaps the most impressive of them was posted by Nakazono, who already went 6-1 near his career-best position in March as well. The makushita debutants Ohata and Midorifuji scored 4-3's, though both had to wait until their final bout to secure it. On the flipside, last basho's fluky sandanme yusho winner Tamakongo had an even tougher time than most fluky 7-0 guys do, and went entirely winless.
 

Heisei Hopefuls for Natsu 2017 - Tier 2: Promising Youngsters - Age 21 and under
Rikishi Heya DOB Debut HiRk 2016.07 2016.09 2016.11 2017.01 2017.03 2017.05
Kiribayama Michinoku 1996/04/24 (12) 2015.05 Ms12 Ms30e 0-0-7 Sd11e 6-1 Ms35e 5-2 Ms20e 5-2 Ms12w 3-4 Ms18e 6-1
Kotaro Fujishima 1995/12/06 (15) 2014.01 Ms14 Ms19w 3-4 Ms28w 4-3 Ms23e 3-4 Ms29e 4-3 Ms25w 4-3 Ms19w 4-3
Kaito Asakayama 1996/06/19 (8) 2012.05 Ms20 Sd22e 5-2 Ms58e 6-1 Ms27w 4-3 Ms22e 3-4 Ms32w 5-2 Ms20e 2-5
Takayoshitoshi Takanohana 1997/05/13 (4) 2013.03 Ms11 Ms53w 6-1 Ms24w 2-5 Ms39e 4-3 Ms30w 6-1 Ms11e 2-5 Ms25e 4-3
Tamakongo Kataonami 1995/09/19 (18) 2014.03 Ms25 Sd12e 3-4 Sd27e 3-4 Sd46w 5-2 Sd16e 3-4 Sd35w 7-0 Y Ms25w 0-7
Nakazono Nishonoseki 1996/05/18 (11) 2012.03 Ms29 Ms60e 3-4 Sd12e 2-5 Sd40e 5-2 Sd13e 4-3 Sd2w 6-1 Ms29e 6-1
Gokushindo Nishikido 1996/06/06 (10) 2012.03 Ms28 Sd8e 4-3 Ms57w 4-3 Ms51e 3-4 Ms58w 3-4 Sd13w 6-1 Ms38e 6-1
Hamayutaka Tokitsukaze 1995/11/17 (16) 2011.05 Ms40 Sd5w 3-4 Sd22w 5-2 Ms59w 3-4 Sd11w 5-2 Ms48w 4-3 Ms40w 6-1
Ohata Tokitsukaze 1996/10/24 (6) 2014.11 Ms49 Sd34w 3-4 Sd52w 4-3 Sd34w 3-4 Sd48e 4-3 Sd32w 6-1 Ms49w 4-3
Oki Shikoroyama 1996/06/12 (9) 2013.07 Ms42 Ms42e 1-6 Sd7w 2-5 Sd32e 6-1 Ms49e 4-3 Ms42w 3-4 Ms54w 4-3
Midorifuji Isegahama 1996/08/30 (7) 2016.09 Ms57   Mz 3-0 Jk21w 7-0 D Jd10w 7-0 D Sd19w 5-2 Ms57w 4-3
Takakento Takanohana 1996/02/10 (13) 2014.01 Ms26 Ms55e 4-3 Ms46w 4-3 Ms36e 2-5 Ms52e 3-4 Sd8e 4-3 Ms59e 5-2
Honda Nishikido 1997/03/11 (5) 2012.03 Ms52 Sd40w 3-4 Sd57w 5-2 Sd28e 5-2 Sd3e 4-3 Ms52w 2-5 Sd17w 5-2
Shuji Kise 1995/10/24 (17) 2014.03 Ms54 Jk15w 7-0 Y Jd12e 7-0 Y Sd20w 2-5 Sd41w 6-1 Ms54w 1-5-1 Sd23e 3-4
Onojo Takadagawa 1996/01/31 (14) 2011.05 Ms60 Sd12w 3-4 Sd28w 4-3 Sd14w 4-3 Sd3w 0-7 Sd53w 5-2 Sd27e 3-4


Nobody out and nobody in for Nagoya basho.

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Tier 3:

A bit of a three-class society here, with mostly good results by those ranked in the makushita top 15 or way down in sandanme, and a plethora of makekoshi in between.

Nobody was ranked in the immediate promotion zone so there wasn't any big excitement about possible promotions, but our two top-ranked Masunosho and Hakuyozan have done enough to get the opportunity next time now. Kizaki and Takemasa extended their KK streaks (from debut) yet again and are getting close as well. Tsurubayashi, who was already ranked at Ms12 three years ago and looked like a major prospect at the time, but has bounced all around makushita since then, is also moving up into the single-digit ranks for the first time following his 5th consecutive KK. Perhaps he's breaking out after all? Meanwhile, Hatooka's debut streak was snapped in mid-makushita, not an overly auspicious sign for his future sekitori chances.

A big crop of four rikishi made their makushita debuts, but only one turned in a kachikoshi record. The MKs for the regular newcomers Tsushimanada and Itadaki didn't come unexpected, but tsukedashi Mitoryu's less than stunning career start certainly caught many observers by surprise, even if it's far from easy to just step in against Ms15-level competition. The worst part was arguably that the 3-4 record was completely deserved given the unimpressive nature of his sumo. Still, it was just the first basho and it's conceivable that his old knee issues had flared up again, so more data will be needed to properly assess the two-time amateur major winner. Fellow tsukedashi starter Yago fared better and concluded his basho with 5 wins, although I for one wasn't that impressed either - he looked more like the next Tokushoryu-level rikishi to me, not the next Mitakeumi/Shodai/Hokutofuji. He's got sheer size on his side though, so I'd be very surprised if he doesn't make it to makuuchi within the next few years. I'm less optimistic about what he'll do once he's there.

 

Heisei Hopefuls for Natsu 2017 - Tier 3: Still Worth Watching - Age 23 and under
Rikishi Heya DOB Debut HiRk 2016.07 2016.09 2016.11 2017.01 2017.03 2017.05
Masunosho Chiganoura 1994/11/14 (25) 2010.03 Ms6 Ms17e 4-3 Ms13w 5-2 Ms6e 2-5 Ms15e 5-2 Ms8e 4-3 Ms6w 4-3
Hakuyozan Takadagawa 1995/04/13 (21) 2011.05 Ms1 Ms9w 2-5 Ms27e 4-3 Ms20w 4-3 Ms14e 4-3 Ms11w 5-2 Ms7w 5-2
Kizaki Kise 1993/05/06 (53) 2016.03 Ms9 Jd38e 7-0 Y Sd39w 7-0 Y Ms26e 4-3 Ms21e 5-2 Ms13w 5-2 Ms9e 4-3
Wakamotoharu Arashio 1993/10/05 (44) 2011.11 Ms5 Ms22w 4-3 Ms16w 4-3 Ms12w 4-3 Ms8e 4-3 Ms5w 3-4 Ms9w 3-4
Takemasa Onomatsu 1993/10/22 (43) 2016.03 Ms10 Jd59w 6-1 Sd92e 6-1 Sd33w 4-3 Sd16w 7-0 Y Ms13e 4-3 Ms10w 4-3
Tsurubayashi Kise 1993/12/31 (41) 2009.03 Ms12 Ms29w 3-4 Ms39w 5-2 Ms28e 5-2 Ms18e 4-3 Ms14w 4-3 Ms12e 5-2
Mitoryu Nishikido 1994/04/25 (35) 2017.05 Ms15           Ms15TD 3-4
Yago Oguruma 1994/07/08 (31) 2017.05 Ms15           Ms15TD 5-2
Tamaki Takasago 1993/05/29 (52) 2016.01 Ms10 Sd19e 6-1 Ms41e 6-1 Ms17e 4-3 Ms10w 3-4 Ms15e 3-4 Ms20w 3-4
Ichiki Tamanoi 1993/11/13 (42) 2016.01 Ms16 Sd69e 6-1 Sd14e 5-2 Ms53w 6-1 Ms24w 5-2 Ms16w 3-4 Ms23w 2-5
Hatooka Kise 1994/02/23 (39) 2016.03 Ms30 Jd34w 6-1 Sd70w 6-1 Sd15e 5-2 Ms50w 5-2 Ms36e 4-3 Ms30e 3-4
Tochinobori Kasugano 1993/09/01 (46) 2009.03 Ms12 Ms24e 2-5 Ms41w 4-3 Ms31w 4-3 Ms26e 4-3 Ms22e 3-4 Ms31e 0-2-5
Asahiryu Asahiyama 1995/04/22 (20) 2016.05 Ms23 Jk23e 6-1 Jd45e 6-1 Sd79w 7-0 D Ms51e 6-1 Ms23e 3-4 Ms31w 4-3
Kaiseio Asakayama 1995/01/28 (22) 2013.03 Ms18 Ms24w 4-3 Ms18w 2-5 Ms31e 0-7 Sd6w 5-2 Ms46w 5-2 Ms35w 2-5
Kotokuzan Arashio 1994/03/11 (38) 2009.09 Ms28 Sd19w 4-3 Sd9e 6-1 Ms34w 4-3 Ms28w 2-5 Ms50e 5-2 Ms37w 2-5
Tsushimanada Sakaigawa 1993/06/27 (49) 2016.05 Ms42 Mz 3-0 Jk26e 6-1 Jd45w 6-1 Sd78e 6-1 Sd21e 6-1 Ms42w 3-4
Hokutokawa Hakkaku 1994/08/15 (29) 2013.03 Ms39 Sd13w 4-3 Sd5e 3-4 Sd19w 5-2 Ms55e 5-2 Ms39e 3-4 Ms46w 5-2
Kotohayato Sadogatake 1994/04/18 (36) 2010.03 Ms48 Sd24e 4-3 Sd11w 4-3 Ms60w 3-4 Sd12w 3-4 Sd31w 6-1 Ms48w 3-4
Musashikuni Musashigawa 1994/12/17 (23) 2013.07 Ms26 Ms54w 6-1 Ms26e 2-5 Ms43w 2-5 Ms59w 5-2 Ms41w 3-4 Ms53e 2-5
Ikegawa Hakkaku 1993/06/02 (51) 2016.03 Ms41 Jd10e 7-0 D Sd19w 6-1 Ms41w 0-0-7 Sd21e 6-1 Ms42e 3-4 Ms53w 5-2
Itadaki Isenoumi 1994/09/05 (28) 2010.03 Ms56 Sd50w 3-2-2 Sd64w 4-3 Sd46e 4-3 Sd29w 4-3 Sd16w 5-2 Ms56w 2-5
Aomihama Dewanoumi 1994/10/27 (27) 2010.03 Ms49 Sd47e 4-3 Sd31e 3-4 Sd50w 3-4 Sd61e 6-1 Sd7e 4-3 Ms57e 2-5
Nishiyama Onoe 1994/04/27 (34) 2010.03 Ms22 Sd1e 3-4 Sd14w 5-2 Ms54e 3-4 Sd2e 3-4 Sd17w 4-3 Ms60w 4-3
Rikito Tokitsukaze 1993/09/21 (45) 2011.09 Ms19 Ms33e 5-2 Ms19e 2-5 Ms32e 3-4 Ms38w 4-3 Ms34w 2-5 Sd1e 6-1
Aonosho Dewanoumi 1993/06/03 (50) 2009.03 Ms29 Ms32w 2-5 Ms54e 4-3 Ms45e 3-4 Ms52w 5-2 Ms37e 2-5 Sd2w 3-4
Hokutoshu Hakkaku 1994/01/14 (40) 2012.03 Ms50 Sd14e 3-4 Sd31w 5-2 Sd5w 4-3 Ms55w 2-5 Sd16e 4-3 Sd4w 4-3
Chiyonokatsu Kokonoe 1994/04/13 (37) 2013.03 Ms57 Sd2w 2-5 Sd28e 3-4 Sd48e 6-1 Ms57e 2-5 Sd22w 4-3 Sd8w 2-5
Tochiseiryu Kasugano 1995/04/26 (19) 2014.03 Ms33 Ms33w 2-5 Ms54w 4-3 Ms47e 2-5 Sd4w 3-4 Sd24w 4-3 Sd11e 6-1
Fukamiyama Onoe 1994/11/12 (26) 2010.03 Ms47 Ms52w 3-4 Sd4e 5-2 Ms49e 3-4 Ms56w 4-3 Ms47e 2-5 Sd12e 4-3
Kaizen Asakayama 1993/07/29 (48) 2016.01 Ms57 Sd96w 6-1 Sd36w 2-5 Sd62e 6-1 Sd8e 4-3 Ms57e 3-4 Sd12w 4-3
Yutakasho Sakaigawa 1994/11/19 (24) 2013.03 Ms55 Sd4w 3-4 Sd20w 0-0-7 Sd81e 6-1 Sd23w 4-3 Sd12w 3-4 Sd32w 6-1
Shinohara Onomatsu 1993/08/21 (47) 2012.01 Ms28 Ms41e 3-4 Ms53e 2-5 Sd16e 3-4 Sd30e 5-2 Sd6e 2-5 Sd34e 5-2
Kotonoshu Sadogatake 1994/07/01 (32) 2010.03 Ms53 Sd41e 5-2 Sd16w 3-4 Sd31e 4-3 Sd14w 4-3 Sd4e 1-5-1 Sd40w 5-2
Kirinofuji Michinoku 1994/07/28 (30) 2011.01 Ms52 Sd26e 5-2 Sd1w 2-5 Sd24e 5-2 Ms59e 3-4 Sd14w 2-5 Sd44e 5-2
Baraki Shikihide 1994/05/10 (33) 2013.01 Ms58 Sd49w 3-4 Sd63e 4-3 Sd44e 4-3 Sd25e 3-4 Sd45e 3-4 Sd65w 3-4


Time for some big cleanup, largely affecting recent collegiate entrants. Kizaki and Tamaki have done enough to warrant another two years in Tier 4, although the shine has already come off the latter with his recent three MK's. Tsushimanada and Ikegawa will be departing as they've fallen short of the Ms15 qualifying mark so far. I suspect Ikegawa will eventually make it and rejoin in Tier 4 for a bit (and could well become sekitori - he's got the physique), while small-sized Tsushimanada has an uphill battle. Last not least we're also saying goodbye to Aonosho who made his makushita debut all the way back in 2012 at age 18 (!), but hasn't progressed at all in the last three years. Given the trajectory it's hard to assess him with future sekitori potential now.


In addition, we've got incoming:

Rikishi Heya DOB Debut HiRk 2016.07 2016.09 2016.11 2017.01 2017.03 2017.05
Murata Takasago 1994/08/08 2017.03 Sd39         Sd100Td 6-1 Sd39e 7-0 D
Wakatakakage Arashio 1994/12/06 2017.03 Sd63         Sd100Td 5-2 Sd63w 7-0 Y

Nothing too surprising so far given that basically all upper-tier university competitors are at least good enough to reach makushita with ease, but their upcoming high-ish entry into the division - around Ms30 for Murata, Ms40 for Wakatakakage - should make sure that Nagoya basho will already provide the first credible test of their abilities. I'll save myself the usual further comments; if you're reading this thread, you've very likely watched their bouts already yourself anyway, and beyond that there really isn't that much to talk about yet.

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Tier 4:

Iwasaki didn't (ahem) monkey around this time and secured his juryo debut in his third opportunity, doing it in style with 6 wins, although he did miss out on the makushita yusho against ultra-veteran Oiwato somewhat surprisingly.

Long-time prospect Daiseido, who has been in the third division ever since Haru 2012, had another of his periodic strong tournaments and has now gone KK in 6 of his last 7 basho (albeit after dropping way down first), but he has teased breakouts multiple times before and at this point I'm rather wary of declaring that this is the time he's finally going to make it. He's set to get the opportunity though with the second top 5 appearance of his career, following Hatsu 2015.

In other news, Kotodaigo and Chiyonoumi had halfway notable 4-3 scores as both continue to work their way back to the heights they had reached a couple of years ago, pre-injuries. The rest of the Natsu results fell into the "the less said, the better" category here.
 

Heisei Hopefuls for Natsu 2017 - Tier 4: Last Chance Saloon - Ms15+ Age 25 and under
Rikishi Heya DOB Debut HiRk 2016.07 2016.09 2016.11 2017.01 2017.03 2017.05
Iwasaki Oitekaze 1992/04/24 (60) 2015.01 Ms2 Ms10w 4-3 Ms7w 5-2 Ms3e 2-5 Ms10e 6-1 Ms3e 4-3 Ms2w 6-1
Daiseido Kise 1992/12/30 (56) 2011.05 Ms3 Ms36e 4-3 Ms28e 4-3 Ms22e 5-2 Ms11w 3-4 Ms18e 5-2 Ms11e 6-1
Irodori Shikoroyama 1992/03/10 (62) 2007.03 Ms8 Ms17w 4-3 Ms14w 5-2 Ms8e 3-4 Ms12e 3-4 Ms18w 5-2 Ms12w 2-5
Sasakiyama Kise 1991/06/12 (65) 2010.01 Ms13 Ms42w 4-3 Ms34e 3-4 Ms45w 4-3 Ms36e 4-3 Ms31e 6-1 Ms13e 1-6
Tochimaru Kasugano 1992/08/26 (58) 2011.05 Ms3 Ms18e 5-2 Ms9w 5-2 Ms4w 4-3 Ms3w 3-4 Ms7e 2-5 Ms16e 2-5
Kotodaigo Sadogatake 1993/01/14 (54) 2011.05 Ms8 Ms28e 2-5 Ms48w 2-5 Sd10w 6-1 Ms34e 5-2 Ms21w 4-3 Ms16w 4-3
Chiyonoumi Kokonoe 1993/01/11 (55) 2015.05 Ms13 Sd33w 0-0-7 Sd94e 6-1 Sd36e 5-2 Sd7e 6-1 Ms32e 4-3 Ms26w 4-3
Shiba Kise 1991/12/24 (64) 2014.03 Ms3 Ms28w 6-1 Ms11e 4-3 Ms8w 5-2 Ms5e 3-4 Ms8w 1-6 Ms28e 5-2
Akinohana Takadagawa 1992/11/30 (57) 2008.03 Ms6 Ms11e 3-4 Ms16e 4-3 Ms10w 1-6 Ms31w 3-4 Ms43w 4-3 Ms37e 4-3
Wakatakamoto Arashio 1991/12/29 (63) 2009.11 Ms11 Ms14w 4-3 Ms11w 1-2-4 Ms30w 0-0-7 Sd10w 5-2 Ms48e 4-3 Ms39e 3-4
Ayanoumi Yamahibiki 1992/03/23 (61) 2007.03 Ms14 Ms51w 4-3 Ms44w 3-4 Ms55e 5-2 Ms37e 4-3 Ms33w 1-6 Sd5w 4-3
Wakayama Onomatsu 1992/04/26 (59) 2011.07 Ms15 Jd91w 0-0-7 Jk25e 0-0-7 Mz 3-0 Jk16w 6-1 Y Jd32e 7-0 Y Sd32e 4-3


With his 26th birthday the end of the prospect road has come for Sasakiyama, a former top high schooler who impressed with a quick early rise to makushita, but never quite caught on afterwards and has spent the majority of his time in the lower half of the division. He originally made his debut back in Hatsu 2010 alongside high school circuit rival Masunoumi who was highly touted at the time as well, but didn't make it either and already retired a year and a half ago (still arguably with more upside than Sasakiyama demonstrated before or since).

No newcomers for Nagoya here except the pair coming down from Tier 3.

 

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