Asashosakari

Promotion/Demotion and Yusho discussion Kyushu 2019

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I don't see why it's unfathomable that they put Tosamidori against Ura.  Ura is the lowest ranked 5-1 Tosamidori can face.  Do you have an example of where they have made lower division pairings based on anything other than the rank and record?  They clearly sometimes use reputation for sekitori matches, but I don't think I've seen it for lower divisions.

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On 17/11/2019 at 08:47, Asashosakari said:

I pretty much wrote off Gagamaru's career a year ago, thinking that, while a return to the paid ranks from makushita was fairly likely, it wouldn't amount to more than an extra cup of coffee. So in that sense it has to rate as a success that he's managed to stick around for a full year after he did make it back up. However, having looked pretty bad in Nagoya and Aki already he seems to have totally lost it this basho, so it's difficult to expect a repeat of September's heroics (where he needed to win 3 of his last 5 and did it with a day to spare). This time I think I'll bet against another return, so the days may be numbered for the big Georgian's sumo career.

And Gagamaru drops out, ending a 1000 bout streak. Could this really be the end? Yago for sure safe in Juryo if he wasn't already with the freebie.

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We will see Chiyootori, and most likely Terunofuji back in Sekitori ranks!

Ichiyamamoto, Gagamaru and Akiseyama will surely go down. Wakamotoharu and Irodori need to win the remaining two - so five exchanges are likely.

The line of promotion is probably Chiranoumi, Asagyokusei, Chiyootori, and Terunofuji. Sakigake may be fourth in line with a win, but Chiyonokuni with a win only sixth for a very lucky promotion.

Edited by Andreas21
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17 hours ago, Gurowake said:

I don't see why it's unfathomable that they put Tosamidori against Ura.  Ura is the lowest ranked 5-1 Tosamidori can face.  Do you have an example of where they have made lower division pairings based on anything other than the rank and record?  They clearly sometimes use reputation for sekitori matches, but I don't think I've seen it for lower divisions.

I suppose it's possible they've become more formulaic of late and strictly take the lowest available jonidan 5-1 now, but it certainly wasn't the case in the past. Just a few years ago they were happy to take rikishi as high as the Jd60's, and quite recently Tomokaze was placed against the fourth-lowest rikishi available in Nagoya 2017. I'd have to spend more time with the data, but I'm pretty sure I've seen basho where they seemed to consciously avoid more risky options in favour of somebody who wasn't likely to kill the zensho.

Edited by Asashosakari

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Day 13 (results, text-only results)

12-1 Yw Hakuho

11-2 ---

10-3 K2w Asanoyama, M10w Shodai

9-4 O2e Takakeisho

(Doesn't look like we'll see all that many double-digit records this basho...)

After an all too easy victory over komusubi Abi, there can be little doubt that Hakuho is set to lift the Emperor's Cup for the 43rd time. Only straight losses to Mitakeumi, Takakeisho and in a playoff to either Asanoyama or Shodai could still change that, but of course the challengers would have to get that far themselves to begin with.

Sekiwake Mitakeumi found himself without answer to Takakeisho's pushing attack today and at 6-7 it's anything but the ozeki rank he has to be concerned with for the final weekend. Maegashira, komusubi or sekiwake for Hatsu, it's in his hands and those of his remaining opponents Hakuho and Abi. In fact, we could well be seeing a straight-up battle for one komusubi spot on senshuraku should both Mitakeumi and Abi (against Takakeisho) lose tomorrow.

Somebody who's not going to be komusubi in January is Hokutofuji, as his spirited but results-wise rather disappointing Aki campaign has reached the makekoshi terminus, sealed by today's loss to ever-dangerous Tamawashi. Fellow komusubi Endo can still hope to retain his spot after defeating Takarafuji, and as it happens he's next on Tamawashi's hit list.

On the flipside, Daieisho continues to challenge for a debut promotion into the titled ranks, and after today's decisive victory over veteran Myogiryu he stands just one win away from kachikoshi as the highest-ranked maegashira. Somewhat surprisingly given how this ranking area looked earlier, he may not even have to rely on an extra slot for it - if Endo and one of Mitakeumi and Abi fall, we'll have an open slot even with the standard count of 4. Any other candidates cannot pass a kachikoshi Daieisho any longer, so it should be between him and the incumbents now, with the rest having to hope he goes MK to fall out of contention altogether.

   0-1-12 Kakuryu       Y    Hakuho       12-1
   0-2-11 Goeido        O1   Takayasu     3-5-5 (x)
     9-4  Takakeisho    O2
     6-7  Mitakeumi     S    Tochinoshin  2-3-8 (x)
     7-6  Abi           K1   Endo          6-7
(x)  5-8  Hokutofuji    K2   Asanoyama    10-3

     7-6  Daieisho      M1   Okinoumi      6-7
     6-7  Myogiryu      M2   Meisei        5-8  (x)
(x)  5-8  Takarafuji    M3
     7-6  Tamawashi     M4   Kotoyuki      6-7  (x)
(x)  6-7  Aoiyama       M5
                        ...
                        M10  Shodai       10-3


We're more or less done in the lower maegashira ranks after Shimanoumi clinched his spot against Nishikigi (now impossible to keep at 10 losses), and Daishomaru fell to a demotion-worthy 4-9 record against visiting Azumaryu. It's looking quite unlikely for Daishomaru to survive through luck as even with four others getting demoted ahead of him, more than enough juryo contenders are knocking on the door after a collectively very successful Day 13. Tochiozan joined the ranks of the certain promotees today with victory over Kaisei, who nevertheless remains one of the stronger candidates to secure a promotable record by the end. Youngsters Kiribayama and Kotonowaka also could get there with just one more win, and top division-experienced Tokushoryu, Chiyoshoma and Hidenoumi remain in the mix as well.

                        M3   Tomokaze     0-3-10(~)
                        ...
(o)  5-8  Shimanoumi    M10
                        M11
(x) kyujo Ichinojo      M12
                        M13
                        M14  Nishikigi     3-10 (x)
(~)  4-9  Daishomaru    M15  Daishoho      3-10 (x)
(x) 4-1-8 Wakatakakage  M16  ---

(o)  9-4  Azumaryu      J1   Tokushoryu    6-7  (2)
(o)  9-4  Tochiozan     J2
(o) 10-3  Ikioi         J3   Chiyoshoma    7-6  (2)
(~)  7-6  Hidenoumi     J4
(1)  9-4  Kaisei        J5   Kiribayama    9-4  (1)
                        J6
                        J7   Kotonowaka   10-3  (1)
                        J8
                        J9   Mitoryu       8-5  (x)
                        J10  Kizakiumi     9-4  (x)

A potentially very gratifying matchup for promotion-seeking Chiyoshoma tomorrow as he gets to face struggling maegashira Daishoho.


I'm sure Yago isn't complaining, but when a fusensho is saving your bacon...well. His scheduled opponent, demotion-bound Gagamaru decided to withdraw from the competition today for his first ever missed bout, and one has to wonder if we're going to see him back on the dohyo at all. Takagenji also finally came through for another win, courtesy of an utchari against rookie Hoshoryu (which, on a technical level, was pretty much the exact opposite from the gorgeous one Shodai pulled off the other day), so the spectre of a high-ranker suffering demotion has been banished. (Okay, there's still sidelined Ichiyamamoto...)

Two demotion candidates had to contend against makushita challengers today, and only one came out a winner: Kaisho ended a five-day losing streak against Chiyootori to stay alive for now. Akiseyama wasn't so fortunate against Asagyokusei and can be demoted now - whether he will be still depends on what's going to happen over the weekend; as many as four others could still fall to worse records.

In any case, three promotion slots are spoken for at this time, those vacated by Ichiyamamoto, Gagamaru and Akiseyama-or-alternate: Former ozeki Terunofuji will be back following nine tournaments in the unsalaried ranks after he finally clinched a yusho on his way back up today. He will be joined by exchange bout winner Asagyokusei, making his second juryo appearance in Hatsu basho, as well as third-time sekitori Churanoumi who earned his kachikoshi against Tsukahara today, denying the young prospect a shot at promotion.

                        J2   Yago          2-11 (o)
                        ...
(o)  4-9  Takagenji     J6   Ichiyamamoto 0-2-11(x)
                        ...
(2)  4-9  Kaisho        J11  Wakamotoharu  4-9  (2)
                        J12  Gagamaru      1-12 (x)
                        J13  Hoshoryu      6-7  (1)
(~)  5-8  Akiseyama     J14  Irodori       6-7  (2)

(o)  4-3  Churanoumi    Ms1  Chiyootori    4-3
(o)  5-2  Asagyokusei   Ms2  Chiyonokuni   3-3
     4-2  Sakigake      Ms3
(x)  3-4  Tsukahara     Ms4
                        Ms5
                        ...
                        Ms10 Terunofuji    7-0  (o)

Chiyonokuni is next to make the trip up for an exchanger, Sakigake will follow on senshuraku. There's no shortage of potential opponents, but for Chiyonokuni the choice was made to have him face bottom-ranked Irodori.

In the past it would have been clear that Chiyootori is the next in line for a promotion slot, should any further ones open up. However, given the apparent tendency of late to put emphasis on the results of the candidates' juryo appearances, his loss today may see him worry about Sakigake moving ahead with a Day 15 win.

Edited by Asashosakari
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Juryo yusho race:

10-3 J3e Ikioi, J7w Kotonowaka

9-4 J1e Azumaryu, J2e Tochiozan, J5e Kaisei, J5w Kiribayama, J10w Kizakiumi, J13e Kotoshoho

8-5 J9w Mitoryu, J12e Akua

Two up, two out for the leading quartet: Former solo frontrunner Kizakiumi lost for the third day in a row in his matchup with co-leader Ikioi, while Kaisei failed to come through against pursuer Tochiozan. Kotonowaka joins Ikioi in the new top duo thanks to his defeat of veteran Hidenoumi. The pursuit group posted the exact same set of results as the previous day, namely wins for Azumaryu, Tochiozan, Kiribayama and Kotoshoho, plus another loss for Mitoryu.

I'm going to stop pretending that I have any idea who's going to win this now - here are the race-relevant matches for Day 14:

J3e Ikioi (10-3)      - J5e Kaisei (9-4)
J7w Kotonowaka (10-3) - J2e Tochiozan (9-4)

J5w Kiribayama (9-4)  - J12e Akua (8-5)
J10w Kizakiumi (9-4)  - J9w Mitoryu (8-5)

J1e Azumaryu (9-4)    - J8e Kyokushuho (6-7)
J13e Kotoshoho (9-4)  - J4e Hidenoumi (7-6)

That's a pretty exciting lineup, I daresay.

10 pairings are still possible among the 2+6 leaders for senshuraku, but 5 of them involve Kotoshoho and 4 more Kizakiumi, who both haven't met many of the other contenders yet due to their low ranking. The only other remaining matchup is Kaisei vs Kotonowaka.


Lower division yusho races (Day 13 results for the zensho rikishi with video links, and for the 5-1 challengers - and the playlist for all, in not quite chronological order):

7-0 Ms10w Terunofuji (Isegahama)
6-1 Ms51w Tsushimanada (Sakaigawa)

7-0 Sd21e Motobayashi (Naruto)
6-1 Sd46e Kitanowaka (Hakkaku)
6-1 Sd94w Awajiumi (Tagonoura)

7-0 Jd16e Murata (Takasago)
7-0 Jd56e Hokutenkai (Onoe)
6-1 Jd80e Chiyotora (Kokonoe)

6-1 Jk15w Tosamidori (Onomatsu)

5-2 Jk3w Chida (Onomatsu)
5-2 Jk9w Chiyotaiko (Kokonoe)
5-2 Jk20e Senho (Miyagino)
6-1 Jk25e Otsuji (Takadagawa)
6-1 Jk28w Yutakanami (Tatsunami)

Tsushimanada didn't make it easy for the ex-ozeki at all, but in the end Terunofuji came through for the yusho and certain promotion back to the paid ranks. Congrats! Still a successful basho for former Ms6 Tsushimanada as well, who has followed up on back-to-back missed tournaments with back-to-back 6-1's now.

The sandanme-jonidan crossover pairing turned out the expected way with Murata overwhelming Awajiumi in short order to secure his yusho playoff place for jonidan and turn sandanme into a straight decider - where Motobayashi and Kitanowaka engaged in a minute and a half of mattas and mind games before a bout that was quite an anti-climax. Quick oshidashi victory for Motobayashi who moves on to makushita with his winning streak intact at 21-0. Kitanowaka was ranked high enough for this basho that his 6 wins will result in a makushita debut as well, though. He'll find himself in one of the last couple of spots, while Motobayashi should be going up to just inside the top 15 ranks. Another zensho there would see him in juryo in the minimum possible time of five professional tournaments, but of course that's going to be a significantly taller order than doing it in jonokuchi, jonidan and sandanme.

Murata's senshuraku opponent for the jonidan title will be Hokutenkai who prevailed in a wild hair matchup with fellow rookie Chiyotora. The match was pretty much all Hokutenkai, and Chiyotora did well to stay alive for as long as he did.

Their playoff will be joined by a tomoe-sen for the jonokuchi championship after Tosamidori was unsurprisingly defeated by former maegashira Ura, opening up the lowest-division race to 5-1's. The two qualification matches involving only jonokuchi rikishi were won by Yutakanami and Otsuji in very straight-forward fashion, while Chida and jonidan Sawayaka had a fun little tussle that ended with victory of higher-ranked Sawayaka, so no playoff participation for Chida.

Edited by Asashosakari
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56 minutes ago, Asashosakari said:

Their playoff will be joined by a tomoe-sen for the jonokuchi championship after Tosamidori was unsurprisingly defeated by former maegashira Ura, opening up the lowest-division race to 5-1's. The two qualification matches involving only jonokuchi rikishi were won by Yutakanami and Otsuji in very straight-forward fashion, while Chida and jonidan Sawayaka had a fun little tussle that ended with victory of higher-ranked Sawayaka, so no playoff participation for Chida.


I'd like to see Yutakanami win the Jonokuchi yusho kettei-sen. The third of ten children, after finishing high school he got a job in a factory in order to help his family, but couldn't shake off his sumo dreams. He was surprised to find his parents supportive when he went to talk to them about entering ozumo, and the family has visited the basho to cheer him on.

I do think he's the outsider though - he was defeated by Otsuji earlier in the basho, who in turn lost to Tosamidori, so the latter should be favourite. But maybe someone will spring a surprise.

 

57 minutes ago, Asashosakari said:

The sandanme-jonidan crossover pairing turned out the expected way with Murata overwhelming Awajiumi in short order


And that was the last bout of Awajiumi's career in fact, he is retiring after just over a decade on the dohyo. He signs off with his first ever 6-1 result, and moves on to a job as a stablehand at Sonoda Racecourse in his home prefecture of Hyogo.

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It looks like there will be some disappointments in Juryo, because despite 5 relegated to makuuchi (or 6 with Tomokaze), there may not be room for everyone!

If I'm not mistaken, there are already 5 good candidates for promotion (Azumaryu, Tochiozan, Ikioi, Kaisei, Kiribayama). And 4 other rikishi will have a claim if they win tomorrow: Chiyoshoma, Kotonowaka, and Tokushoryu (Hidenoumi barely). One of them can take poor Tomokaze's spot, but what if 2 or 3 of them win tomorrow?
>> Between Tokushoryu J1w 8-7, Chiyoshoma J3w 9-6 and Kotonowaka J7w 11-4, who do you think will get Tomokaze's spot and who will stay in Juryo?

In the Juryo-Makushita exchange, it's the opposite. We have a lot of good candidates for demotion (5), and 2 more tomorrow if they lose (Hoshoryu, Irodori).
In the upper part of Makushita, we finally won't have enough candidates left if there are 7 demotees.
>> Could Sakigake claim spot #5 even if he lose tomorrow against Hoshoryu?
>> If Hoshoryu or Irodori lost, who will be promoted? A 6-1 Shiba at ms7w, a 4-3 Chiyonoumi at ms6e, or nobody? Enho get promoted from ms6e with 4 wins in January 2018 (it is the only regular occurence). Promotion from Ms7 with 6 wins was common in the 70'-80'-90' (11x), but last time was Tamanokuni in 1999...

Anyway I have the feeling that Hoshoryu and Irodori will both win, Sakigake will be promoted with 4-3 and Shiba will stay in Makushita with 6-1 or 5-2. Not very fair as Sakigake's schedule was not tougher than Shiba's... The most logical thing would have been an Irodori-Shiba bout, no?

Edited by serge_gva

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Day 14 (results, text-only results)

13-1 Yw Hakuho

12-2 ---

11-3 K2w Asanoyama

10-4 M10w Shodai

Mitakeumi was clearly up for the musubi no ichiban, not least because his sekiwake rank was on the line, but yokozuna Hakuho made short work of him with a sotogake to clinch his 43rd yusho, and first of the Reiwa era. And although his basho participation hasn't markedly improved from last year, it also means that 2018 will continue to stand - for now - as the only year of his yokozuna tenure in which Hakuho didn't win at least two yusho. Anyway, congrats to the deserving winner!

Pursuer Asanoyama defeated Ryuden earlier in the session and had done his part to not just hand over the yusho by default, while Shodai was already out of the race following a loss against Myogiryu. Alas, Hakuho made sure that neither result mattered.

Mitakeumi is makekoshi as a consequence of today's kuroboshi, and so the sekiwake ranks should be settled for Hatsu basho: Barring highly unusual banzuke-making decisions it'll be Asanoyama on the East side and falling ozeki Takayasu on the West.

The first komusubi slot was claimed by Abi today who overcame ozeki Takakeisho with a quick sideways move following the tachiai. A promotion to sekiwake appears exceedingly unlikely even if he claims a 9th win against Mitakeumi tomorrow, which should make Abi the first rikishi in over 13 years to serve four consecutive basho as komusubi. Daieisho staked his claim to a komusubi position as well and he did so in impressive fashion against fellow pusher Onosho, clinching kachikoshi as the top-ranked maegashira. 8 wins at M1e last failed to see a rikishi promoted to sanyaku more than 50 years ago, although in today's more restrictive banzuke climate he may want to add a 9th win to force the committee's hand as Hokutofuji did two months ago.

Another two candidates exist in Mitakeumi should he win tomorrow - outside of a very brief early 1990s period when it was done consistently, 7-8 sekiwake haven't been dropped to the maegashira ranks since 1982 - and in incumbent Endo who remains in line to complete the comeback to kachikoshi from 5-7 after today's victory over Tamawashi.

   0-1-13 Kakuryu       Y    Hakuho       13-1
   0-2-12 Goeido        O1   Takayasu     3-5-6 (x)
     9-5  Takakeisho    O2
     6-8  Mitakeumi     S    Tochinoshin  2-3-9 (x)
     8-6  Abi           K1   Endo          7-7
(x)  6-8  Hokutofuji    K2   Asanoyama    11-3

     8-6  Daieisho      M1   Okinoumi      6-8  (x)
     7-7  Myogiryu      M2
                        M3
     7-7  Tamawashi     M4   Kotoyuki      7-7
                        ...
                        M10  Shodai       10-4

As mentioned it's Mitakeumi versus Abi tomorrow, taking place as the penultimate bout. It'll be preceded by Endo's kachikoshi quest, for which he is being challenged by Kotoyuki, also 7-7. As is customary, the final match of the basho will be between the two highest-ranking rikishi, or at least the two highest that made it through - only Hakuho and Takakeisho did so among the yokozuna and ozeki, of course. Lastly, Daieisho's possibly crucial 9th win will have to come at Enho's expense, another rikishi entering senshuraku on 7-7.

(Incidentally, this basho's senshuraku schedule is the second in a row that came out very late - they had a good reason last time because the yusho situation was very much in flux, but today's delay was rather unusual by their standards. New general modus operandi?)


Nishikigi added a fourth win to his tally at last, but it's too little, too late to save himself. Daishomaru did what he had to do and beat Kotoshogiku today, but the juryo side ensured that he won't be getting a lucky reprieve after all - lots and lots of wins by promotion candidates there, and with Kaisei and Kiribayama two more of them clinched properly promotable records today. No less than three others can still do so tomorrow, which would lead to a very crowded promotion picture indeed, and may even endanger unfortunate Tomokaze after all.

                        M3   Tomokaze     0-3-11(~)
                        ...
(x) kyujo Ichinojo      M12
                        M13
                        M14  Nishikigi     4-10 (x)
(x)  5-9  Daishomaru    M15  Daishoho      3-11 (x)
(x) 4-1-9 Wakatakakage  M16  ---

(o) 10-4  Azumaryu      J1   Tokushoryu    7-7  (1)
(o) 10-4  Tochiozan     J2
(o) 10-4  Ikioi         J3   Chiyoshoma    8-6  (1)
(~)  8-6  Hidenoumi     J4
(0) 10-4  Kaisei        J5   Kiribayama   10-4  (0)
                        J6
                        J7   Kotonowaka   10-4  (1)

The promotions of Azumaryu, Tochiozan and Ikioi are sure as they cannot be pushed too low in the promotion queue. (Kaisei might pass Ikioi, but there are enough open slots for it not to matter.) The rest...who knows. I've listed Kaisei and Kiribayama as "zero wins needed" for now, rather than with the unusual promotion marker. Hidenoumi is only in there for posterity - he can't finish better than 6th in line, and I'm reasonably sure that they wouldn't be dropping Tomokaze for him.

One of tomorrow's matches may end up as a straight shootout for one spot as Chiyoshoma and Kiribayama will be facing off. Kaisei and Kotonowaka meet as well, but the potential implications of that are less clear. Tokushoryu's opponent will be Tobizaru (J10e 8-6), perhaps the most favourable assignment in all of this.


Possible feelings of déjà vu in Kokonoe-beya. Aki basho: Chiyonoo, having been promoted to Ms2w following a makushita yusho from a low rank, falls to makekoshi in his last match and misses out on promotion to juryo. Kyushu basho: Chiyonokuni, having been promoted to...you see where this is going. Hard-luck loss today, one difference to last basho being that Chiyonokuni had to contend with a juryo opponent for his KK opportunity (Chiyonoo lost in makushita). It was good news for bottom-ranked Irodori though, who retained his sliver of hope for a kachikoshi.

Irodori was the only one down here to have a good Day 14, in fact, as the torikumi brought losses for everybody else. Akiseyama is now definitely headed back to makushita, while Kaisho and Wakamotoharu only have the tiniest of chances to survive with 10 losses from J11. Hoshoryu lost his third in a row (and sixth in the last seven) and almost certainly has to win on senshuraku if he wants to stay in the paid ranks.

                        J6   Ichiyamamoto 0-2-12(x)
                        ...
(~)  4-10 Kaisho        J11  Wakamotoharu  4-10 (~)
                        J12  Gagamaru     1-12-1(x)
                        J13  Hoshoryu      6-8  (1)
(x)  5-9  Akiseyama     J14  Irodori       7-7  (1)

(o)  4-3  Churanoumi    Ms1  Chiyootori    4-3  (o)
(o)  5-2  Asagyokusei   Ms2  Chiyonokuni   3-4  (x)
     4-2  Sakigake      Ms3
                        Ms4
                        Ms5
                        ...
                        Ms10 Terunofuji    7-0  (o)

I've gone ahead and marked Chiyootori as safe - somebody's gonna drop to open up a 4th slot, it's just not clear who yet. Sakigake would ordinarily be certain to move up as well since 5 slots can easily be created, but based on recent committee behaviour they could decide that a loss up in juryo would kill his chances. He gets to battle Hoshoryu, in any case, so at least on the face of it that's a straight-up exchange bout. The two J11's will have to win, hope for losses by both Hoshoryu and Irodori, and hope the committee favours their higher rank in what would be rather close demotion decisions.

None of the demotion candidates are matched up for Day 15, so things could go really haywire here if they all lose to give us as many as 7 eminently demotable juryo rikishi. The only halfway credible extra promotion choice would be Ms7w Shiba as mentioned a few days ago, and only if he grabs a 6th win tomorrow.

-----

Juryo yusho race:

10-4 J1e Azumaryu, J2e Tochiozan, J3e Ikioi, J5e Kaisei, J5w Kiribayama, J7w Kotonowaka

9-5 J9w Mitoryu, J10w Kizakiumi, J13e Kotoshoho

8-6 J3w Chiyoshoma, J4e Hidenoumi, J10e Tobizaru, J12e Akua

Both leaders were matched up with pursuers for Day 14, and both promptly lost, Ikioi against Kaisei and Kotonowaka against Tochiozan. The other chasing rikishi went 2 and 2 against their respective opponents with victories for upper-half Azumaryu and Kiribayama, and defeats for low-ranked Kizakiumi (fourth straight loss) and Kotoshoho.

Unfortunately that set of results has exactly eliminated the two contenders who figured into nearly all of the senshuraku head-to-head possibilities, so despite having 6 rikishi co-leading, only Kaisei-Kotonowaka was possible to realize for tomorrow's schedule. If nothing else, that still ensures that the yusho line will be at 11 wins.

As detailed elsewhere earlier today, this is the first time with modern juryo division sizes that as many as 6 rikishi are tied for a 10-4 lead entering the final day. (However, another Kyushu basho nine years ago saw an arguably even more impressive set of records with one 11-4 and five 10-5's.)

Anyway, the scenarios for tomorrow obviously run from outright victory for either Kaisei or Kotonowaka to playoffs with as many as 5 participants. Should be good! These are the matchups involved:

J5e Kaisei (10-4)     - J7w Kotonowaka (10-4)

J1e Azumaryu (10-4)   - J9w Mitoryu (9-5)
J2e Tochiozan (10-4)  - J10w Kizakiumi (9-5)
J3e Ikioi (10-4)      - J12e Akua (8-6)
J5w Kiribayama (10-4) - J3w Chiyoshoma (8-6)

In addition, the jonokuchi three-way playoff and the jonidan decider will also be on tap.

Edited by Asashosakari
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17 hours ago, Asashosakari said:

Hoshoryu lost his third in a row (and sixth in the last seven) and almost certainly has to win on senshuraku if he wants to stay in the paid ranks.             

I am glad for him that he won senshuraku, can you for sure say that he will be able to stay in Juryo, even if he drops to the lowest rank?

It looks like there is going to be a lot of movement in the ranks around him.

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The new Makuuchi banzuke looks like it might be better to be built from deciding who will make the cut at the bottom, and going from the bottom up.  There will have to be some rather large demotions simply because there aren't enough rikishi to fill out all the bottom ranks.  Similarly, in the joi there will have to be some larger than normal demotions for the former sanyaku to fit everyone in the space; we have 3 rikishi wanting to be demoted to M1, plus the 8-7 M2e Myogiryu.  It definitely doesn't help for either area that there will be a whopping 3 less sanyaku than last basho now that Endo and Mitakeumi failed to secure positions there.  Both Sekiwake demoted to Maegashira, 2 Komusubi demoted, and only Daieisho moving up.  Asanoyama will likely be eligible for promotion to Ozeki, but with only 21 wins starting at M2, he'll probably need to win the Yusho or get 13 or possibly even 14 wins, so I don't think anything will be said about what will be required before the basho starts; we'll just have to see if he goes on a good run and manages to convince the committee with a thoroughly dominating performance.

In terms of Makuuchi <-> Juryo there's clearly going to be Azumaryu, Ikioi, Tochiozan, Kaisei, and Kiribayama up, with Daishomaru, NIshikigi, Wakatakakage, Daishoho, and Ichinojo down, with the last spot being a toss up in my mind between Tomokaze and Tokushoryu.  I might be wrong about this though since there's a tendency to not promote from lower in the division, but with an extra win I'd think Kiribayama should be safe for promotion.

For Juryo <-> Makushita we'll have Akiseyama, Gagamaru, Ichiyamamoto definitely down, with Kaisho and Wakamotoharu technically being on the bubble, though in the worst possible positions.  We'll definitely see Terunofuji, Churanoumi, and Asagyokusei return to Juryo, with Chiyootori easily replacing the bubbled Wakamotoharu, while the last spot will be between Kaisho and Sakigake.  That should go in favor of the currently Makushita rikishi as well. 

Edited by Gurowake
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2 minutes ago, Gurowake said:

 Similarly, in the joi there will have to be some larger than normal demotions for the former sanyaku to fit everyone in the space; we have 3 rikishi wanting to be demoted to M1, plus the 8-7 M2e Myogiryu.

They could be really cheeky and keep Endo and Hokutofuji as Komusubi I suppose, which would solve the quoted problem easily.  That would also make things a little easier on the bottom of the banzuke because the numbers for the maegashira would all be 1 smaller.  They might figure that since they aren't required to demote them (neither was the lowest ranked Komusubi), and there's little pressure from the maegashira, that they still belong in sanyaku.  Still farfetched, but I wouldn't totally discount it.

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42 minutes ago, Gurowake said:

They could be really cheeky and keep Endo and Hokutofuji as Komusubi I suppose, which would solve the quoted problem easily.  That would also make things a little easier on the bottom of the banzuke because the numbers for the maegashira would all be 1 smaller.  They might figure that since they aren't required to demote them (neither was the lowest ranked Komusubi), and there's little pressure from the maegashira, that they still belong in sanyaku.  Still farfetched, but I wouldn't totally discount it.

Maybe they can at last promote Abi too. It will be helping to create the new Banzuke too ! 

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35 minutes ago, Kaiomitsuki said:

Maybe they can at last promote Abi too. It will be helping to create the new Banzuke too ! 

Jiji reports that they will certainly do so (kakujitsu)  http://www.jiji.com/jc/article?k=2019112400436&g=spo

3 kachikoshi as top komusubi in a row, and 9-6 in a row now - I really think it's time

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1 hour ago, Gurowake said:

Asanoyama will likely be eligible for promotion to Ozeki, but with only 21 wins starting at M2, he'll probably need to win the Yusho or get 13 or possibly even 14 wins, so I don't think anything will be said about what will be required before the basho starts; we'll just have to see if he goes on a good run and manages to convince the committee with a thoroughly dominating performance.

The shimpan department declared that Asanoyama will not be on (official) ozeki run next basho. http://www.jiji.com/jc/article?k=2019112400466&g=spo

But like Gurowake said and we know from the past, that doesn't mean they won't promote him after a thoroughly dominating performance.

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I was entertaining Mitakeumi only dropping to Komusubi but that's only happened once in the 15-day era. Way more likely for Endofuji to be staying there.

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3 hours ago, serge_gva said:

If they promote Abi, who will get the second Komusubi spot? Are they going to save Mitakeumi's record?

Myogiryu

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10 hours ago, Kotononami said:
13 hours ago, serge_gva said:

If they promote Abi, who will get the second Komusubi spot? Are they going to save Mitakeumi's record?

Myogiryu

Yeah, the only sekiwake to stay in sanyaku with a 6-9 was Mitsuneyama in 1952/3 http://sumodb.sumogames.de/Query.aspx?show_form=0&amp;form1_rank=s&amp;form1_wins=6&amp;form1_losses=9&amp;form2_rank=k,s

A bit earlier he was the first sekiwake in history to stay at sekiwake with a 7-8 http://sumodb.sumogames.de/Query.aspx?show_form=0&form1_rank=s&form1_wins=7&form1_losses=8&form2_rank=s

Quite similar achievements to Mitakeumi at that point, but a slightly different era (not 6 basho, ranks till m21). Still, a precedent exists ...

There's the fact that Mitakeumi has joined Tamawashi now as sekiwake yusho winner with a makekoshi next. Tamawashi with 5-10 was dropped then all the way to m3.

On 14/11/2019 at 22:57, Akinomaki said:

Mitakeumi is the only one to have 2 yusho at sekiwake - the illustrious list of the others who were not promoted to ozeki right away with a sekiwake yusho shows 4 later yokozuna, 2 ozeki and 2 who peaked at sekiwake: Hasegawa and - Tamawashi, who among them is the only one so far to have a makekoshi after his sekiwake yusho.

http://sumodb.sumogames.de/Query.aspx?show_form=0&amp;columns=3&amp;form1_rank=s&amp;form1_y=on&amp;form2_rank=s

Here they might not want to ruin his ozeki run completely - ozeki are getting rare these days.

Edited by Akinomaki

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And finally...

Day 15 (results, text-only results)

14-1 Yw Hakuho

13-2 ---

12-3 ---

11-4 K2w Asanoyama, M10w Shodai

10-5 M12w Takanosho, M13w Kagayaki

The musubi no ichiban was a lengthy match, but one could be excused for not finding it very interesting anyway, and not only because the yusho was decided already - champion Hakuho collected his 14th win by patiently outwaiting ozeki Takakeisho in a deep belt grip, clearly never at risk of actually losing from there. Takakeisho thus missed out on finishing the basho with the ozeki-expected double-digit wins, but given the severe doubts that he would be able to participate at all after the pectoral injury he suffered two months ago, it's surely been a successful basho for him.

Three more rikishi entered the day on 9-5, with Kagayaki and Takanosho both earning their first top division 10+ wins records, while Chiyomaru fell short; it would have been his first time as well. All in all just five makuuchi rikishi reached 10-5 or better this time, the fewest in almost 15 years and only the second time below six since the division was expanded to 42 spots back in 2004. Hakuho's championship by three wins up on the field is the first since Aki 2018, which unsurprisingly was won by him, too.

Three sansho were awarded for the final basho of 2019. A well-deserved gino-sho went to Hakuho's closest challenger Asanoyama, who should be at least on an unofficial low-key ozeki run next basho following 21 wins in Aki and Kyushu. This is his first gino-sho, and he's now in the semi-select club of rikishi who have won each of the three special prizes at least once.

Shodai was nominated for a kanto-sho on the condition of defeating Asanoyama on senshuraku, and he duly did so to earn the prize (and a share of the jun-yusho, of course). I was a bit surprised by that, given that 11 wins by a low-ranked rikishi who's normally a joi-in mainstay aren't usually getting much sansho attention, and I didn't feel his involvement in the yusho race was all that noteworthy either. (While he started the basho off with 4 wins, he was down to just 5-3 on nakabi and didn't get back to a share of the second-best record until Day 12, when things were nearly decided already.) In any case, this is Shodai's third kanto-sho, the only sansho type he has been decorated with so far.

And lastly a shukun-sho for defeating yusho winner Hakuho was awarded to this year's surprise package Daieisho, who has collected his first-ever prize with that. He was also senshuraku's one big winner in the race for the sanyaku spots, even though he himself didn't actually win - rather, Daieisho was flung down by Enho and got stuck at 8 wins after all, but the other results of the day played into his hands. His Oitekaze stablemate Endo surprisingly lost a 7-7 decider to resurgent Kotoyuki and joined Hokutofuji in 7-8 makekoshi territory, and one bout later sekiwake Mitakeumi fell to 6-9 in a close loss to komusubi Abi.

Consequently there are now just four "proper" candidates for the Hatsu basho sanyaku slots: Asanoyama, Takayasu, Abi and Daieisho. As was already mentioned in other comments above, it would be exceedingly unusual for Mitakeumi to not get dropped to a maegashira position on his 6-9 record, and retaining 7-8 komusubi (one or both) without a pressing need would be nearly as odd.

The above-mentioned Jiji Press claim notwithstanding, I don't really buy the idea that Abi moving up to sekiwake is an obviously done deal. There's no pressing need to do that, either, even if getting stuck at komusubi again would be rather unlucky for him. (But then that's happened to others even with 10 wins before, and even with his back-to-back 9-6's Abi wouldn't be the first.) I guess we'll see if the press outlets keep insinuating such a decision after Wednesday's banzuke-making conference.

The one possible reason to create a fifth sanyaku rikishi would be to avoid having to cut the titled ranks by three slots in one go, which otherwise would obviously introduce significant (but not insurmountable, IMHO) distortions in the maegashira ranks. There have only ever been three banzuke whose sanyaku differed in size that much from the preceding one: It went from 13 to 10 following Hatsu 1958 (involving a double yokozuna retirement), from 14 to 11 after Natsu 1962, and conversely from 9 to 12 after Nagoya 1960. Needless to say, some of those slot counts alone should indicate that that was a very different banzuke-making era.

Nevertheless, an 8-man sanyaku would be quite unusual even for the current era of very restrictive sanyaku assignments - however, it's difficult to discern any possible intent when there's been a lack of opportunity to begin with: The most recent such ranking was the one for Kyushu 2005, but there's only been one basho with just 4 Y/O since then, Aki 2011, and that banzuke had inherited three kachikoshi sekiwake from the previous basho, so an 8-sanyaku lineup was not an option. In other words, we're entering mostly uncharted territory here.

In any case, if there are 9 sanyaku on the Hatsu banzuke, I'd be very surprised if the beneficiary is somebody other than Myogiryu, who clinched his kachikoshi against Onosho on the final day, having won five of his last six matches. (Incidentally, what a pushout festival in 7-7 matchups that was on Sunday...)

   0-1-14 Kakuryu       Y    Hakuho       14-1
   0-2-13 Goeido        O1   Takayasu     3-5-7 (x)
     9-6  Takakeisho    O2
(x)  6-9  Mitakeumi     S    Tochinoshin  2-3-10(x)
     9-6  Abi           K1   Endo          7-8  (x)
(x)  7-8  Hokutofuji    K2   Asanoyama    11-4

(o)  8-7  Daieisho      M1
(?)  8-7  Myogiryu      M2
                        M3
     8-7  Tamawashi     M4   Kotoyuki      8-7
                        ...
                        M10  Shodai       11-4


The promotion race in juryo finished with another day of strong results, and consequently we now have six very qualified candidates, most importantly top-ranked Tokushoryu who completed a four-day quest to achieve his kachikoshi from 4-7. J5's Kaisei and Kiribayama both moved up to 11-4 records. We did already know that 5 top division slots would be available for sure, so the question now is: Will they let poor Tomokaze survive? It could well have significant implications for how far he's going to fall until he's ready to come back to action. (However, they could conceivably also demote him to J1 this time and then go easy on him next time and put him at the bottom of juryo rather than straight into makushita.)

Anyway, four promotions are clear, those of Azumaryu and Tochiozan (both back up after one juryo tournament), Kaisei (after two), and Ikioi (after four). The remaining two slots will have to be decided between Tomokaze, Tokushoryu and Kiribayama. The committee tends to go very much by the numbers these days, so I'm inclined to believe that Kiribayama's +3 wins will trump any possible extra credit Tokushoryu might receive for being J1. If so, the lanky Mongolian would be set to make his makuuchi debut at the young age of 23. I do have the feeling that he could use a little more seasoning, but then again who really saw Wakatakakage starting off with four straight wins this basho after he'd never even scored a 10-5 in juryo? As for the last spot, your guess is as good as mine. I think I'll be expecting Tokushoryu to get stuck in juryo, but that's not a firm opinion at all.

                        M3   Tomokaze     0-3-12(?)
                        ...
(x) kyujo Ichinojo      M12
                        M13
                        M14  Nishikigi     4-11 (x)
(x)  5-10 Daishomaru    M15  Daishoho      3-12 (x)
(x)4-1-10 Wakatakakage  M16  ---

(o) 11-4  Azumaryu      J1   Tokushoryu    8-7  (?)
(o) 10-5  Tochiozan     J2
(o) 11-4  Ikioi         J3   Chiyoshoma    8-7
     8-7  Hidenoumi     J4
(o) 11-4  Kaisei        J5   Kiribayama   11-4  (?)
                        J6
                        J7   Kotonowaka   10-5

A quick look at the likely composition of the next juryo shows a sizable hole below J2w after ranking the one guy who's not going to be in makuuchi, Chiyoshoma, Hidenoumi and Kotonowaka, so the rikishi coming down from the maegashira ranks could be getting some very lucky small-sized demotions. Even Ichinojo might, I've provisionally pencilled him in at J6w which would only be a 10-rank drop rather than the more customary 12 or 13.


The race for the bottom juryo spots played out towards relatively straight-forward results. Bottom-ranked Irodori finished kachikoshi at the last opportunity, quickly overwhelming veteran Sokokurai, while rookie Hoshoryu went into close combat with makushita visitor Sakigake and soon threw him to the ground for his safety-clinching 7th win. Both J11's Kaisho and Wakamotoharu managed to dress up their records with another win, but still only ended their Kyushu campaign with matching 5-10 scores.

By ordinary standards this should be a straight-forward exchange of five eminently demotable juryo rikishi against four makushita guys with strong records and another with a perfectly acceptable one. However, the decisions in there have not exactly been "normal" of late, so I suppose it's possible that Sakigake's senshuraku loss will see him passed over for promotion. The only option to benefit from that would be Kaisho. I'm rather struggling to see that as a realistic scenario, though, as it would not only be unusual to let such a bad score survive when a perfectly cromulent promotion candidate exists, but it would also feel rather weird to treat the two same-score J11's so differently when it's not dictated by unavoidable circumstances.

                        J6   Ichiyamamoto 0-2-13(x)
                        ...
(?)  5-10 Kaisho        J11  Wakamotoharu  5-10 (x)
                        J12  Gagamaru     1-12-2(x)
                        J13  Hoshoryu      7-8  (o)
(x)  5-10 Akiseyama     J14  Irodori       8-7  (o)

(o)  4-3  Churanoumi    Ms1  Chiyootori    4-3  (o)
(o)  5-2  Asagyokusei   Ms2
(?)  4-3  Sakigake      Ms3
                        Ms4
                        Ms5
                        ...
                        Ms10 Terunofuji    7-0  (o)


And lastly a quick summary of the remaining yusho decisions. Juryo ended up with a four-way tie for the lead, the first since Aki 2017. Kaisei defeated Kotonowaka in the one solitary head-to-head match among the leaders, followed on the torikumi by victories for Kiribayama, Ikioi and Azumaryu, while Tochiozan fell out of contention. The ensuing two-round playoff saw easy victories for Azumaryu over Ikioi who had suffered a head wound in his regular bout, as well as for Kaisei over Kiribayama. The final was very nearly decided in quick fashion in Kaisei's favour, but Azumaryu managed to circle around the tawara, secured a strong left-hand outside grip in the process and soon got the victory by uwatenage. It's the 32-year-old veteran's first championship in any division.

In jonidan, rookie Hokutenkai surprised by not only holding his own against Murata who'd nearly made it to juryo before, but actually taking charge of the bout and winning by yorikiri in quite decisive fashion. And down in jonokuchi the three-way playoff played out in largely expected fashion with Otsuji repeating first his Day 5 win over Yutakanami and then his Day 9 defeat against Tosamidori, before the latter also easily dispatched Yutakanami to complete the tomoe-sen. So, victory for the favourite here.

All in all, four divisional yusho were won by foreign-shusshin rikishi this basho, the first time that has happened since Hatsu 2013.

I think that's all from here, thanks for reading if you've actually made it all the way to the end of this post. ;-) 

Edited by Asashosakari
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4 hours ago, Asashosakari said:

a perfectly cromulent promotion candidate exists

I want to point out that Asashosakari's promo/demo posts embiggen everyone who reads them.

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