Promotion & Demotion & Yusho Kyushu 2021

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I have no idea if @Asashosakari will be able to do his usual postings or not. If he does, then great. If not, then I'll have something here that we can work with. It won't be as detailed as usual. I'm much shorter on time this basho.

Day 11

Makuuchi Yusho

Yokozuna Terunofuji is in fine form, going undefeated so far. He's not as imperious as Hakuho was, but he is reading his opponent's moves well and has been able to counter everything so far. His biggest challenger so far is Ozeki Takakeisho, who often does well in Kyushu and looks strong again. At one loss, he could win the Yusho by beating Terunofuji in regulation and  a playoff (assuming everything else goes his way). Also on one loss is the returning-from-suspension Abi. It's no great shock that he is doing well at a low Maegashira rank, but he is asked to face opponents from progressively further up the banzuke, so it would be a surprise to see him remain at one loss.


This is the first banzuke without Hakuho since his retirement. The timing of his retirement means that there are only 41 makuuchi wrestlers this basho. Ozeki Shodai has looked good and not so good in parts but will probably get his 8 wins. Sekiwake Mitakeumi has 9 wins now and has locked down that East Sekiwake spot. West Seklwake Meisei is performing like last basho. He can only afford one more loss to retain his rank, but despite his Day 12 opponent being Terunofuji, his remaining opponents will all be ranked below him, so 8 wins isn't out of the question.

The Komusubi pair both have 7 losses. They both have one more Sanyaku opponent they can fight. Kiribayama has his on Day 12 in the form of Shodai. Ichinojo still has Meisei, but that could be passed over if needed.

If any spots open up then M2w Takanosho (7-4) is the frontrunner. M6w Tamawashi (9-2) is probably in second place, but any of the top 8 Maegashira (aside from Myogiryu) could make a claim if they win out.

Makuuchi - Juryo

There were two spots open in Makuuchi even before the basho started. One courtesy of Hakuho's retirement and one due to Asanoyama's suspension. Shohozan already has a demotable record.

I'm going to list the rikishi who can still get demotable records and give how many wins they need to survive.

(x) Free Spot
(x) Asanoyama  M10w Susp
(~) Shohozan    M17w 3-8

(3) Kaisei            M17e  5-6
(3) Kagayaki       M14e 3-8
(2) Chiyomaru    M15e  5-6
(2) Tochinoshin M13w 4-4-3
(2) Yutakayama M13e  4-7
(1) Akua              M16e  6-5
(1) Kotonowaka M11e 4-7
(1) Aoiyama       M9e 3-8
(1) Kotoeko        M8w 2-9 

Kaisei and Kagayaki are the most in danger, and this is Kagayaki's 7th make-koshi in a row. There are no direct matchups on the slate for Day 12 amongst this group (unless you count Kotonowaka-Shohozan). 

There are not too many rikishi in Juryo with good-looking records yet, but Wakamotoharu has a promotable record already, and it is looking good that we'll see him in Makuuchi with his brother in January. I'm going to list the rikishi as I did before with win targets in brackets.

(o) Wakamotoharu J1w 8-3

(1) Ichiyamamoto J4w 9-2
(2) Oho                   J7e 9-2
(3) Tsurugisho      J1e  5-6
(4) Bushozan        J3w  5-6
(4) Kotoshoho       J6e 7-4

Everyone else would need some luck. Oho went undefeated through the first 9 days, but lost against promotion frontrunners Wakamotoharu and Ichiyamamoto.

Juryo - Makushita

Hakuho's retirement created the first slot here. Hokuseiho's ill fated sekitori debut has created the second. I'll list as before.

(x) Free slot
(x) Hokuseiho J12w 0-2-9

(3) Kyokushuho J14e 5-6
(3) Kyokutaisei  J9e   2-9
(2) Yago             J10e 4-7
(1) Tohakuryu    J12e 6-5
(1) Churanoumi J8e 4-7

Not a long list, and recent evidence suggest that Tohakuryu and Churanoumi might be safe already. A lot of work to do for the Tomozuna pair though. 

3-3 Jokoryu Ms1 Kotoyusho 4-2
    Ms2 Shiba 4-2
4-2 Kitanowaka Ms3    
4-2 Chiyoarashi Ms4 Fukai 3-3
    Ms5 Asabenkei 3-3

No one from the extended promotion zone can get the yusho anymore after Roga was defeated by former Juryo veteran Chiyonoumi. Jokoryu could claim the first spot in his match up in Juryo with Tohakuryu. No one has claimed a spot yet, but it seems unlikely that Fukai or Asabenkei will make it. 


Edited by Sakura
Random errors
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How far will Asanoyama fall in the next banzuke?  Just curious to know your thoughts

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"Usual" postings is probably saying too much at this point, though I've had enough time to at least do the data collecting (albeit having had to play catchup since Day 9). Here we go I guess, days that have passed without commentary though:

Day 8 (results, text-only results)

8-0 Ye Terunofuji, Ow Takakeisho

7-1 Se Mitakeumi, M15w Abi

6-2 M6w Tamawashi, M7e Ura, M12w Hokutofuji, M16w Sadanoumi

     8-0  Terunofuji    Y    ---
     5-3  Shodai        O    Takakeisho    8-0
     7-1  Mitakeumi     S    Meisei        4-4
     3-5  Ichinojo      K    Kiribayama    2-6

     3-5  Daieisho      M1   Wakatakakage  2-6
     2-6  Onosho        M2   Takanosho     5-3
     2-6  Okinoumi      M3   Myogiryu      2-6
     3-5  Takarafuji    M4   Endo          4-4
     5-3  Takayasu      M5   Hoshoryu      4-4
     3-5  Shimanoumi    M6   Tamawashi     6-2
     6-2  Ura           M7   Chiyoshoma    4-4
                        M8   Tobizaru      5-3
                        M9   Hidenoumi     5-3
     5-3  Chiyotairyu   M10
                        M12  Hokutofuji    6-2
                        M15  Abi           7-1


(2)  1-7  Kotoeko       M8
(1)  3-5  Aoiyama       M9
                        M10  Asanoyama    susp.
(2)  3-5  Kotonowaka    M11  Terutsuyoshi  3-5  (2)
(2)  3-5  Ishiura       M12
(4)  2-6  Yutakayama    M13  Tochinoshin  2-3-3 (4)
(3)  3-5  Kagayaki      M14  Chiyonokuni   4-4  (2)
(3)  4-4  Chiyomaru     M15
(3)  4-4  Akua          M16  Sadanoumi     6-2  (1)
(4)  4-4  Kaisei        M17  Shohozan      1-7  (7)

(5)  3-5  Tsurugisho    J1   Wakamotoharu  5-3  (3)
(7)  2-6  Daiamami      J2   Kaisho        3-5  (6)
(5)  4-4  Daishomaru    J3   Bushozan      4-4  (5)
(6)  4-4  Nishikifuji   J4   Ichiyamamoto  6-2  (4)
(~)  2-6  Chiyonoo      J5   Nishikigi     4-4  (6)
(4)  7-1  Kotoshoho     J6   Tokushoryu    3-5  (~)
(3)  8-0  Oho           J7   Daishoho      3-5  (~)
                        J10  Azumaryu      6-2  (7)
(~)  5-3  Enho          J11
                        J14  Kotokuzan     7-1  (~)


(1)  2-6  Chiyonoo      J5
                        J6   Tokushoryu    3-5  (1)
                        J7   Daishoho      3-5  (1)
(2)  3-5  Midorifuji    J8   Churanoumi    3-5  (2)
(2)  3-5  Mitoryu       J9   Kyokutaisei   2-6  (3)
(3)  3-5  Yago          J10
(1)  5-3  Enho          J11  Hakuyozan     4-4  (2)
(3)  4-4  Tohakuryu     J12  Hokuseiho    0-2-6 (x)
(2)  5-3  Asanowaka     J13  Hiradoumi     3-5  (4)
(5)  3-5  Kyokushuho    J14  Kotokuzan     7-1  (1)

     2-2  Jokoryu       Ms1  Kotoyusho     3-1
     1-3  Tsushimanada  Ms2  Shiba         3-1
     4-1  Kitanowaka    Ms3  Hokaho        0-4  (x)
     2-2  Chiyoarashi   Ms4  Fukai         1-3
     1-3  Shonannoumi   Ms5  Asabenkei     2-2
     4-0  Tamashoho     Ms8
     4-0  Roga          Ms13


Explanation of symbols used:

numbers = wins needed until favourable outcome (getting promoted / not getting demoted)
o = favourable outcome achieved
x = favourable outcome definitely missed
~ = favourable outcome missed "by the numbers", but still achievable through banzuke luck

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Juryo yusho race through Day 8:

8-0 J7e Oho

7-1 J6e Kotoshoho, J14w Kotokuzan

6-2 J4w Ichiyamamoto, J10w Azumaryu

Lower division yusho races (Day 7-8 results):

4-0 Ms8e Tamashoho (Kataonami)
4-0 Ms13e Roga (Futagoyama)
4-0 Ms20e Tochikodai (Kasugano)
4-0 Ms33e Chiyonoumi (Kokonoe)
4-0 Ms37e Tomokaze (Oguruma)
4-0 Ms47w Ryuden (Takadagawa)
4-0 Ms57e Aozora (Kasugano)

4-0 Sd1w Wayama (Musashigawa)
4-0 Sd11e Tatsukaze (Oguruma)
4-0 Sd24w Fujitoshi (Fujishima)
4-0 Sd27w Daihisho (Oitekaze)
4-0 Sd42e Arauma (Isenoumi)
4-0 Sd46w Daiyusho (Oitekaze)
4-0 Sd60w Taiyo (Onoe)
4-0 Sd65e Oginohama (Dewanoumi)
4-0 Sd78e Teraoumi (Shikoroyama)
4-0 Sd83w Kiryuko (Tatsunami)
4-0 Sd95w Miyagi (Oguruma)
4-0 Sd100Td Kinbozan (Kise)

4-0 Jd11e Kaiho (Tomozuna)
4-0 Jd13w Hokutohiro (Hakkaku)
4-0 Jd24e Ryubumaru (Musashigawa)
4-0 Jd31w Tochigidake (Kasugano)
4-0 Jd38w Chiyodaigo (Kokonoe)
4-0 Jd42w Chiyokozan (Kokonoe)
4-0 Jd61w Yurikisho (Tokiwayama)
4-0 Jd68w Asakiryu (Takasago)
4-0 Jd69e Asahabataki (Takasago)
4-0 Jd81w Chiyoyamato (Kokonoe)
4-0 Jd94w Takatsukasa (Irumagawa)

4-0 Jk1e Goseiryu (Sakaigawa)
4-0 Jk10w Inoue (Kise)
4-0 Jk16w Chiyoshishi (Kokonoe)

(The ex-sekitori feature will have to be on hiatus this basho, I'm afraid, unless somebody else wants to do the coverage.)

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Day 9 (results, text-only results)

9-0 Ye Terunofuji, Ow Takakeisho

8-1 Se Mitakeumi, M15w Abi

7-2 M6w Tamawashi, M7e Ura, M12w Hokutofuji

     9-0  Terunofuji    Y    ---
     5-4  Shodai        O    Takakeisho    9-0
     8-1  Mitakeumi     S    Meisei        4-5
     3-6  Ichinojo      K    Kiribayama    3-6

     3-6  Daieisho      M1   Wakatakakage  2-7
     3-6  Onosho        M2   Takanosho     6-3
     3-6  Okinoumi      M3   Myogiryu      2-7
     3-6  Takarafuji    M4   Endo          5-4
     5-4  Takayasu      M5   Hoshoryu      4-5
     4-5  Shimanoumi    M6   Tamawashi     7-2
     7-2  Ura           M7   Chiyoshoma    5-4
                        M8   Tobizaru      5-4
                        M9   Hidenoumi     5-4
(x)  5-4  Chiyotairyu   M10
                        M12  Hokutofuji    7-2
                        M15  Abi           8-1


(2)  1-8  Kotoeko       M8
(1)  3-6  Aoiyama       M9
                        M10  Asanoyama    susp.
(2)  3-6  Kotonowaka    M11  Terutsuyoshi  3-6  (2)
(1)  4-5  Ishiura       M12
(3)  3-6  Yutakayama    M13  Tochinoshin  2-4-3 (4)
(3)  3-6  Kagayaki      M14  Chiyonokuni   5-4  (1)
(2)  5-4  Chiyomaru     M15
(2)  5-4  Akua          M16  Sadanoumi     6-3  (1)
(4)  4-5  Kaisei        M17  Shohozan      2-7  (6)

(4)  4-5  Tsurugisho    J1   Wakamotoharu  6-3  (2)
(~)  2-7  Daiamami      J2   Kaisho        3-6  (6)
(5)  4-5  Daishomaru    J3   Bushozan      4-5  (5)
(6)  4-5  Nishikifuji   J4   Ichiyamamoto  7-2  (3)
(x)  2-7  Chiyonoo      J5   Nishikigi     5-4  (5)
(4)  7-2  Kotoshoho     J6   Tokushoryu    4-5  (~)
(2)  9-0  Oho           J7   Daishoho      4-5  (~)
                        J10  Azumaryu      6-3  (~)
(x)  5-4  Enho          J11
                        J14  Kotokuzan     8-1  (~)


(1)  2-7  Chiyonoo      J5
                        J6   Tokushoryu    4-5  (o)

                        J7   Daishoho      4-5  (o)
(1)  4-5  Midorifuji    J8   Churanoumi    3-6  (2)
(2)  3-6  Mitoryu       J9   Kyokutaisei   2-7  (3)
(3)  3-6  Yago          J10
(1)  5-4  Enho          J11  Hakuyozan     5-4  (1)
(2)  5-4  Tohakuryu     J12  Hokuseiho    0-2-7 (x)
(1)  6-3  Asanowaka     J13  Hiradoumi     4-5  (3)
(4)  4-5  Kyokushuho    J14  Kotokuzan     8-1  (o)

     2-3  Jokoryu       Ms1  Kotoyusho     3-2
(x)  1-4  Tsushimanada  Ms2  Shiba         4-1
     4-1  Kitanowaka    Ms3
     3-2  Chiyoarashi   Ms4  Fukai         2-3
     2-3  Shonannoumi   Ms5  Asabenkei     3-2
(x)  4-1  Tamashoho     Ms8
     5-0  Roga          Ms13

Edited by Asashosakari
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Juryo yusho race through Day 9:

9-0 J7e Oho

8-1 J14w Kotokuzan

7-2 J4w Ichiyamamoto, J6e Kotoshoho

Lower division yusho races (Day 9 results):

4-1 Ms8e Tamashoho (Kataonami)
5-0 Ms13e Roga (Futagoyama)
4-1 Ms20e Tochikodai (Kasugano)
5-0 Ms33e Chiyonoumi (Kokonoe)
4-1 Ms37e Tomokaze (Oguruma)
5-0 Ms47w Ryuden (Takadagawa)
5-0 Ms57e Aozora (Kasugano)

4-1 Sd1w Wayama (Musashigawa)
4-1 Sd11e Tatsukaze (Oguruma)
5-0 Sd24w Fujitoshi (Fujishima)
4-1 Sd27w Daihisho (Oitekaze)
5-0 Sd42e Arauma (Isenoumi)
4-1 Sd46w Daiyusho (Oitekaze)
5-0 Sd60w Taiyo (Onoe)
5-0 Sd65e Oginohama (Dewanoumi)
4-1 Sd78e Teraoumi (Shikoroyama)
4-1 Sd83w Kiryuko (Tatsunami)
4-1 Sd95w Miyagi (Oguruma)
5-0 Sd100Td Kinbozan (Kise)

5-0 Jd11e Kaiho (Tomozuna)
5-0 Jd13w Hokutohiro (Hakkaku)
4-1 Jd24e Ryubumaru (Musashigawa)
4-1 Jd31w Tochigidake (Kasugano)
5-0 Jd38w Chiyodaigo (Kokonoe)
4-1 Jd42w Chiyokozan (Kokonoe)
5-0 Jd61w Yurikisho (Tokiwayama)
4-1 Jd68w Asakiryu (Takasago)
5-0 Jd69e Asahabataki (Takasago)
5-0 Jd81w Chiyoyamato (Kokonoe)
4-1 Jd94w Takatsukasa (Irumagawa)

4-1 Jk1e Goseiryu (Sakaigawa)
5-0 Jk10w Inoue (Kise)
5-0 Jk16w Chiyoshishi (Kokonoe)

The schedulers deviated from the standard procedures and did Kiryuko-Kinbozan and Miyagi-Kaiho here, instead of Kiryuko-Miyagi and Kinbozan-Kaiho in ranking order. Seemingly to keep Kinbozan from facing jonidan opposition for some reason, because they did it again for round 6 - with 17 undefeated 5-0 rikishi the required 4-1 torikumi fill-in wasn't sourced at the bottom of the banzuke as usual, as an opponent for Chiyoshishi, but rather as a sandanme opponent for Kinbozan (who otherwise would have faced Kaiho now after all).

Edited by Asashosakari
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20 minutes ago, Asashosakari said:

The schedulers deviated from the standard procedures

That seems to be the "standard procedure" for SdTDs though, especially when there's two at the same time where they can't decide whether they should meet each other or not.  (Why are there two at the same time in Kyushu, plus a MsTD?  Does it have anything to do with Covid?  I probably just am not paying attention.)

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Day 10 (results, text-only results)

10-0 Ye Terunofuji

9-1 Ow Takakeisho, M15w Abi

8-2 Se Mitakeumi, M6w Tamawashi, M7e Ura, M12w Hokutofuji

    10-0  Terunofuji    Y    ---
     6-4  Shodai        O    Takakeisho    9-1
     8-2  Mitakeumi     S    Meisei        5-5
     4-6  Ichinojo      K    Kiribayama    3-7

     3-7  Daieisho      M1   Wakatakakage  3-7
     4-6  Onosho        M2   Takanosho     6-4
     4-6  Okinoumi      M3   Myogiryu      2-8  (x)
     4-6  Takarafuji    M4   Endo          5-5
     5-5  Takayasu      M5   Hoshoryu      4-6
     5-5  Shimanoumi    M6   Tamawashi     8-2
     8-2  Ura           M7   Chiyoshoma    6-4
                        M8   Tobizaru      5-5  (x)
                        M9   Hidenoumi     6-4
                        M12  Hokutofuji    8-2
                        M15  Abi           9-1


(1)  2-8  Kotoeko       M8
(1)  3-7  Aoiyama       M9
                        M10  Asanoyama    susp.
(2)  3-7  Kotonowaka    M11  Terutsuyoshi  4-6  (1)
(o)  5-5  Ishiura       M12
(3)  3-7  Yutakayama    M13  Tochinoshin  3-4-3 (3)
(3)  3-7  Kagayaki      M14  Chiyonokuni   5-5  (1)
(2)  5-5  Chiyomaru     M15
(1)  6-4  Akua          M16  Sadanoumi     6-4  (1)
(4)  4-6  Kaisei        M17  Shohozan      2-8  (~)

(3)  5-5  Tsurugisho    J1   Wakamotoharu  7-3  (1)
(~)  3-7  Daiamami      J2   Kaisho        3-7  (~)
(5)  4-6  Daishomaru    J3   Bushozan      4-6  (5)
(~)  4-6  Nishikifuji   J4   Ichiyamamoto  8-2  (2)
                        J5   Nishikigi     5-5  (5)
(4)  7-3  Kotoshoho     J6   Tokushoryu    4-6  (x)
(2)  9-1  Oho           J7   Daishoho      5-5  (~)
                        J10  Azumaryu      6-4  (x)
                        J14  Kotokuzan     9-1  (~)


(o)  3-7  Chiyonoo      J5
(o)  5-5  Midorifuji    J8   Churanoumi    4-6  (1)
(1)  4-6  Mitoryu       J9   Kyokutaisei   2-8  (3)
(3)  3-7  Yago          J10
(o)  6-4  Enho          J11  Hakuyozan     5-5  (1)
(2)  5-5  Tohakuryu     J12  Hokuseiho    0-2-8 (x)
(o)  7-3  Asanowaka     J13  Hiradoumi     5-5  (2)
(4)  4-6  Kyokushuho    J14

     3-3  Jokoryu       Ms1  Kotoyusho     3-2
                        Ms2  Shiba         4-1
     4-1  Kitanowaka    Ms3
     3-2  Chiyoarashi   Ms4  Fukai         2-3
     2-3  Shonannoumi   Ms5  Asabenkei     3-2
     5-0  Roga          Ms13


Juryo yusho race through Day 10:

9-1 J7e Oho, J14w Kotokuzan

8-2 J4w Ichiyamamoto

7-3 J1w Wakamotoharu, J6e Kotoshoho, J13e Asanowaka

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Day 11 (results, text-only results)

11-0 Ye Terunofuji

10-1 Ow Takakeisho, M15w Abi

9-2 Se Mitakeumi, M6w Tamawashi, M12w Hokutofuji

A lot of opponents are managing to put him under pressure, but none has managed to break through the yokozuna's defenses yet, and today was no different for Ichinojo despite a very spirited attempt of his. After he clinched his promotion with his first-ever 14-1 record four months ago, could this basho see the first zensho for Terunofuji?

Meanwhile Takakeisho continues to give chase, today with textbook Takakeisho sumo against Endo. Abi, freshly returned to the top division, is demonstrating that his involuntary timeout did not erode his skills, as his joi-quality sumo keeps vanquishing maegashira opponents with ease; Day 11 saw him dispatch of Ura in quick fashion after the trickster's submarine attack didn't go anywhere off the tachiai. Hokutofuji is similarly underranked after his Aki campaign was cut short by injury and he too is making a strong case for an immediate return to much higher grounds.

Although things are likely to come down to the yokozuna and the ozeki in the end, it's a pretty high-quality race all things considered, with six scores of 9-2 and better being far from the norm. Sekiwake Mitakeumi is probably the biggest wildcard in the field with his matches against the two higher-rankers still to come. In any case he's currently on course to secure himself an ozeki run, anything 11-4 and above should result in him becoming an acknowledged contender for the next tournament.

Fellow sekiwake Meisei was dropped to 5-6 by ozeki Shodai (who is having a pretty standard tournament by his, well, standards). KK will be an uphill battle from here, but Meisei does have only Terunofuji left from those ranked above him, and he surely can't be counted out from rattling off three wins against his remaining opponents. He's probably an odds-on favourite to at least get 2 wins to retain a slot in sanyaku. That's going to be rather more difficult for the komusubi pair whose target is of course 8 wins, not 7. Kiribayama avoided makekoshi for now against last basho's surprise Myogiryu.

The upper maegashira ranks comprise a sea of MK-trending records at this stage, with only Takanosho and Tamawashi on course to challenge for promotion to the titled ranks. Ura may also get to have a word in, but he needs to make up two wins on Tamawashi and probably won't get ahead of joi-ranked Takanosho.

    11-0  Terunofuji    Y    ---
     7-4  Shodai        O    Takakeisho   10-1
     9-2  Mitakeumi     S    Meisei        5-6
     4-7  Ichinojo      K    Kiribayama    4-7

     4-7  Daieisho      M1   Wakatakakage  4-7
     4-7  Onosho        M2   Takanosho     7-4
     4-7  Okinoumi      M3
(x)  4-7  Takarafuji    M4   Endo          5-6
     5-6  Takayasu      M5   Hoshoryu      5-6
(x)  5-6  Shimanoumi    M6   Tamawashi     9-2
     8-3  Ura           M7   Chiyoshoma    6-5
                        M9   Hidenoumi     6-5  (x)
                        M12  Hokutofuji    9-2
                        M15  Abi          10-1


We've got two slots to fill in makuuchi for January with retired Hakuho's and suspended Asanoyama's both up for grabs, and the first one was almost certainly claimed today by Wakamotoharu, his kachikoshi making a case for him to join younger brother Wakatakakage among the sumo elite. Ichiyamamoto looks to be promotee #2 as he is en route to his third straight double-digit record in juryo (punctuated by his recent 8-7, 4-11 spell in makuuchi of course), but after that it's going to get a lot more murky. Youngster Oho may be having a breakout basho but for promotion he'll need to get back to the winning track after two straight losses, given his relatively low rank.

The more likely scenarios may be seeing a bunch of lucky non-demotions among the maegashira, especially if the lower sanyaku shake out such that we'll be getting an M18e spot for Hatsu. Although even that may not be helping Shohozan who is already makekoshi at the current lowest rank and will probably go back to juryo with a 9th loss. He did avoid that fate today with a strong win over struggling middle-ranker Kotoeko. Other maegashira making a strong case for requiring banzuke luck are Kagayaki (clinched his 7th straight MK today) and Kaisei, both of whom need to win more than half their remaining bouts to be safe the old-fashioned way.

Former ozeki Tochinoshin, handicapped by a four-day delayed start to the basho, is looking far from great but seems to have enough left in the tank to amass the wins for at least one more top division appearance. Other than hapless Kotoeko and overmatched Shohozan, the lower maegashira rikishi who has been looking the worst might actually be Yutakayama; we'll have to wait and see if today's turnaround win against Shimanoumi is going to spark a good finish. On the upside for him, even just one more victory may already be enough to retain his top division presence.

(1)  2-9  Kotoeko       M8
(1)  3-8  Aoiyama       M9
                        M10  Asanoyama    susp. (x)
(1)  4-7  Kotonowaka    M11  Terutsuyoshi  5-6  (o)
(2)  4-7  Yutakayama    M13  Tochinoshin  4-4-3 (2)
(3)  3-8  Kagayaki      M14  Chiyonokuni   6-5  (o)
(2)  5-6  Chiyomaru     M15
(1)  6-5  Akua          M16  Sadanoumi     7-4  (o)
(3)  5-6  Kaisei        M17  Shohozan      3-8  (~)

(3)  5-6  Tsurugisho    J1   Wakamotoharu  8-3  (o)
(~)  4-7  Daiamami      J2   Kaisho        3-8  (x)
(~)  4-7  Daishomaru    J3   Bushozan      5-6  (4)
(x)  4-7  Nishikifuji   J4   Ichiyamamoto  9-2  (1)
                        J5   Nishikigi     5-6  (~)
(4)  7-4  Kotoshoho     J6
(2)  9-2  Oho           J7   Daishoho      5-6  (x)
                        J14  Kotokuzan     9-2  (x)


The juryo division, too, has two spots available for sure, in this case thanks to Hakuho again as well as rookie Hokuseiho's early departure with injury. Big danger looms also for Tomozuna duo Kyokutaisei and Kyokushuho, the latter attempting to avoid his 5th consecutive makekoshi and the potential end to what's currently the longest uninterrupted juryo tenure (at 27 tournaments). Meanwhile, this basho's pair of juryo newcomers are acquitting themselves very well with Hiradoumi just one win away from safety and two from KK, while Asanowaka clinched his winning record already today and even plays a role in the yusho race.

Over in makushita there's no shortage of promotion contenders this basho. Lead-ranked Jokoryu had an early sixth match yesterday and kept his KK chances alive against Kyokushuho, everybody else was in action today. Former Kokutai freestyle wrestling champion Kotoyusho took a big step towards juryo with his KK-securing win over veteran Asabenkei, and although his promotion isn't assured yet he's most likely guaranteed to be at least third in line, possibly even second. He was joined at 4-2 via victory by upper makushita mainstay Chiyoarashi who attempts to overcome last basho's unfortunate near-miss in the promotion sweepstakes. Also 4-2 but with losses today are Shiba, another one who has had a bunch of close calls for promotion before, and highly regarded Kitanowaka who is still only in his third professional year. After his first-ever juryo appearance went well against Tohakuryu back on Day 8, today's outing against Hiradoumi wasn't quite so successful.

Meanwhile, the last zensho contender among the top 15 ranks, Roga, was defeated today and will not figure into Kyushu's promotion race any longer.

                        J8   Churanoumi    4-7  (1)
(o)  5-6  Mitoryu       J9   Kyokutaisei   2-9  (3)
(2)  4-7  Yago          J10
                        J11  Hakuyozan     6-5  (o)
(1)  6-5  Tohakuryu     J12  Hokuseiho    0-2-9 (x)
                        J13  Hiradoumi     6-5  (1)
(3)  5-6  Kyokushuho    J14

     3-3  Jokoryu       Ms1  Kotoyusho     4-2
                        Ms2  Shiba         4-2
     4-2  Kitanowaka    Ms3
     4-2  Chiyoarashi   Ms4  Fukai         3-3
(x)  2-4  Shonannoumi   Ms5  Asabenkei     3-3
(x)  5-1  Roga          Ms13

It's another early bout for Jokoryu tomorrow as his kachikoshi will be on the line against Tohakuryu.

Edited by Asashosakari
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3 minutes ago, Asashosakari said:

especially if the lower sanyaku shake out such that we'll be getting an M18e spot for Hatsu

You make it sound like it's not almost certainly going to be the case.  We'd have to see Ichinojo and Kiribayama win out, Meisei manage 2 more wins, plus either Daieisho winning out or Takanosho managing to force another spot somehow with an 11-4, which might not even happen should he get that score.  I suppose perhaps all those things are reasonable to assume might happen and thus in combination one foresees a possibility of there being 8 or 9 sanyaku, but it's a pretty big stretch at this point.

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Juryo yusho race through Day 11:

9-2 J4w Ichiyamamoto, J7e Oho, J14w Kotokuzan

8-3 J1w Wakamotoharu, J13e Asanowaka

7-4 J6e Kotoshoho, J11e Enho

What looked like a bit of a foregone conclusion two days ago with a single unbeaten leader and one immediate pursuer has turned into quite the race now; losses by Oho against fellow contenders Wakamotoharu on Day 10 and Ichiyamamoto today have blown things wide open.

Up for tomorrow, a clear highlight bout:

J14w Kotokuzan (9-2)   -  J4w  Ichiyamamoto (9-2)
J1e  Tsurugisho (5-6)  -  J7e  Oho (9-2)

J6e  Kotoshoho (7-4)   -  J1w  Wakamotoharu (8-3)
J5e  Chiyonoo (3-8)    -  J13e Asanowaka (8-3)

J8e  Midorifuji (6-5)  -  J11e Enho (7-4)

Four more matches among the top 5 are still possible, three of them involving Asanowaka (who has only faced Kotokuzan thus far). The fourth possibility is Oho-Kotokuzan.

Since it's rather unobvious from their respective shikona I'll mention that Wakamotoharu and Kotokuzan are both members of Arashio-beya.

Lower division yusho races (Day 11 results):

5-1 Ms13e Roga (Futagoyama)
6-0 Ms33e Chiyonoumi (Kokonoe)
6-0 Ms47w Ryuden (Takadagawa)
5-1 Ms57e Aozora (Kasugano)

5-1 Sd24w Fujitoshi (Fujishima)
6-0 Sd42e Arauma (Isenoumi)

6-0 Sd60w Taiyo (Onoe)
5-1 Sd65e Oginohama (Dewanoumi)
6-0 Sd100Td Kinbozan (Kise)

6-0 Jd11e Kaiho (Tomozuna)
5-1 Jd13w Hokutohiro (Hakkaku)
5-1 Jd38w Chiyodaigo (Kokonoe)
6-0 Jd61w Yurikisho (Tokiwayama)
5-1 Jd69e Asahabataki (Takasago)
6-0 Jd81w Chiyoyamato (Kokonoe)

6-0 Jk10w Inoue (Kise)
5-1 Jk16w Chiyoshishi (Kokonoe)

The makushita race is down to two ex-sekitori contenders in Ryuden and Chiyonoumi, one of whom will now be taking the shortcut route back to the top 5 promotion zone on Day 13. Sandanme and jonidan are both set with 3 still-unbeaten rikishi thanks to the aforementioned schedule deviation (which probably wouldn't have happened with matches as per the usual), while jonokuchi is down to the obvious yusho candidate, makushita regular Inoue who is competing in his first full basho since Haru 2020.

With nine rikishi left on zensho records they'll need another filler opponent for round 7, and it's anybody's guess if they'll give him to Kinbozan again or to Inoue this time around. It might not make much of a difference in race terms as the most likely outcome is a directly decided yusho for the jonidan division either way, with either Kinbozan knocking out Kaiho or Inoue dispatching Chiyoyamato, along with Inoue winning the jonokuchi title, and sandanme getting contested in a Day 15 playoff.

Edited by Asashosakari
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There are an even number of 4-2s in Makushita ranked higher than the first ones scheduled in Makushita for Day 13, but one of the former, Chiyoarashi, is headed into Juryo Day 13, so that leaves one other 4-2 that will head into Juryo, either Kotoyusho, Shiba, or Kitanowaka.  Kotoyusho and Kitanowaka have already been up twice, so maybe it'll be Shiba?  None of the possible matches between those 3 4-2 Makushitans have happened yet, so it could be any of them.

There are an odd number of 3-3s in Makushita ranked higher than the first ones scheduled in Makushita, leaving there to be one that's going to be headed into Juryo, either Fukai or Asabenkei.  Neither of these rikishi have a great shot as promotion even if they win, as there are 4 ahead of them for sure.  Certainly there might be 5 or even 6 spots open, and in one of those cases they'll be in line for promotion if they win, but two of the Juryo on the bubble (Kiradoumi and Yago) need only one win in the last three days.  Yago technically needs 2 to be absolutely safe, but a 5-10 J10e should survive being bumped by a 4-3 Ms4w.   Another only needs two (Kyokushuho), while there are 2 open spots and Kyokutaisei who most likely needs to win the rest.  The latter is probably is not safe as 4-11 against a 4-3 Ms4w (Fukai) but might be against a 4-3 Ms5w (Asabenkei) and absolutely would be if they needed to go beyond that to find a KK rikishi to take his spot (Shimazuumi and Takakento both at 3-3 Ms6, Tamashoho at 5-1 Ms8 are the next best possibilities).

There are no 5-1s or 6-0s in the promotion zone, so no one else to worry about going up into Juryo.

If a sekitori or 3 withdraws after Day 14, Tsushimanada would get a lucky 8th match against a sekitori not on the bubble to fill in the sekitori schedule for Day 15.

Edited by Gurowake

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Day 12 (results, text-only results)

12-0 Ye Terunofuji

11-1 Ow Takakeisho, M15w Abi

10-2 ---

9-3 Se Mitakeumi, M6w Tamawashi, M7e Ura, M12w Hokutofuji

Another spirited challenge against the yokozuna, this time by Meisei, but again it wasn't to be. Pursuers Takakeisho and Abi kept in touch with the leader with convincing victories of their own (over Takayasu and Tamawashi respectively), but the 9-2 group of contenders were entirely wiped out and are almost definitely out of the running.

The first slot in lower sanyaku was both cleared and likely claimed after komusubi Kiribayama was sent to makekoshi by KK-clinching ozeki Shodai, while promotion seeker Takanosho earned a kachikoshi of his own against Onosho to stake a claim on the freed-up position. A lot will have to go wrong for him to get passed by any other candidates. Ichinojo avoided the trip back down for now after a lenghty but ultimately successful outing against Takarafuji. Sekiwake Meisei needs to win out to stay as sekiwake and go 2-for-3 to grab a komusubi spot. Mitakeumi got outsumoed by crafty Endo, his low-key ozeki quest taking an unwanted hit as he heads into his matches with the yokozuna and two ozeki.

    12-0  Terunofuji    Y    ---
     8-4  Shodai        O    Takakeisho   11-1
     9-3  Mitakeumi     S    Meisei        5-7
     5-7  Ichinojo      K    Kiribayama    4-8  (x)

     5-7  Daieisho      M1   Wakatakakage  5-7
(x)  4-8  Onosho        M2   Takanosho     8-4
     5-7  Okinoumi      M3
                        M4   Endo          6-6
(x)  5-7  Takayasu      M5   Hoshoryu      5-7  (x)
                        M6   Tamawashi     9-3
     9-3  Ura           M7   Chiyoshoma    6-6  (x)
                        M12  Hokutofuji    9-3
                        M15  Abi          11-1

The ozeki matchup between Shodai and Takakeisho which would ordinarily be part of Day 13 has been scrapped in favour of Takakeisho facing fellow pursuer Abi, while Shodai will have to deal with Tamawashi. It remains to be seen how the final two days shake out. Terunofuji's matches against the ozeki duo could be flipped from their normal order to give a prospective senshuraku yusho showdown with Takakeisho, but of course that runs the usual risk that the bout might not be for the yusho at all if it's already decided beforehand.

Terunofuji-Shodai may also end up getting shoved aside in case they believe that Abi needs another major challenge. That could conceivably result in the ozeki matchup featuring on Day 14 after all if the challenge takes the form of Terunofuji-Abi. However, in the schedulers' minds perhaps Shodai-Abi would make sense, too, which would leave Terunofuji free to face first Takakeisho and then Shodai, with Shodai-Mitakeumi ending up on the cutting room floor instead.


Struggling Kotonowaka has posted back-to-back wins for the first time this basho, and along with his three earlier shiroboshi he should be safe for another top division appearance, hopefully more healthy again. Somewhat surprisingly we're also going to see Akua again, his fifth win in six days leaving him secure and even just one win away from kachikoshi. Yutakayama and Chiyomaru moved within one win of safe ground.

It's curtains for Shohozan, however, as his 9th loss should see him as a certain demotion. Kagayaki is increasingly at risk of following him after six straight losses, and he will now need to run the table to be safe for sure and requires two wins just to put himself into a possible banzuke luck conversation.

With Shohozan going down we're at three available slots and although it's currently quite difficult to see who's going to put in a bid for the third one, we do at least have a clear candidate for #2 with Ichiyamamoto clinching double-digit wins today. Top-ranked Tsurugisho is the next most credible contender, needing two wins in three days for KK and a certain promotion. Erstwhile yusho leader Oho lost for the third day straight and may be fading too much to stay in the race until the end.

(1)  2-10 Kotoeko       M8
(1)  3-9  Aoiyama       M9
                        M10  Asanoyama    susp. (x)
(o)  5-7  Kotonowaka    M11
(1)  5-7  Yutakayama    M13  Tochinoshin  4-5-3 (2)
(3)  3-9  Kagayaki      M14
(1)  6-6  Chiyomaru     M15
(o)  7-5  Akua          M16
(2)  6-6  Kaisei        M17  Shohozan      3-9  (x)

(2)  6-6  Tsurugisho    J1   Wakamotoharu  8-4  (o)
(~)  5-7  Daiamami      J2
(x)  4-8  Daishomaru    J3   Bushozan      6-6  (3)
                        J4   Ichiyamamoto 10-2  (o)
                        J5   Nishikigi     5-7  (x)
(3)  8-4  Kotoshoho     J6
(2)  9-3  Oho           J7


It's another near-miss for veteran Jokoryu, 3-4 at makushita's highest rank for the second time in three basho after he was unable to come through against Tohakuryu. The latter also secured his own spot in the paid ranks with that, as did Churanoumi with victory over upper-ranked Daishomaru. Kyokutaisei lost for the fifth day in a row - his second streak like that in this basho - and it's getting very dicey for him now; his more than four straight years as sekitori may be coming to an end soon. Stablemate Kyokushuho improved his lot a bit but still needs two more wins, while Yago and Hiradoumi did not manage to make inroads today.

No action in makushita after everybody relevant was already in competition on Day 11.

                        J8   Churanoumi    5-7  (o)
                        J9   Kyokutaisei   2-10 (3)
(2)  4-8  Yago          J10
(o)  7-5  Tohakuryu     J12  Hokuseiho   0-2-10 (x)
                        J13  Hiradoumi     6-6  (1)
(2)  6-6  Kyokushuho    J14

(x)  3-4  Jokoryu       Ms1  Kotoyusho     4-2
                        Ms2  Shiba         4-2
     4-2  Kitanowaka    Ms3
     4-2  Chiyoarashi   Ms4  Fukai         3-3
                        Ms5  Asabenkei     3-3

With the need to have a makushita rikishi participate in juryo and Kyokutaisei on the bubble, it's no surprise that he has been tabbed for the day's crossover match. Chiyoarashi is getting the first call-up for the final round, in an unusually late slot (third bout) due to Kyokutaisei's relatively high rank. This pairing has happened twice before...back in 2012. Probably not many match-ups that come along again after such a lengthy break. Of course, even if Chiyoarashi wins here he's not quite certain to get promoted in the end, given that three others could still end up in front of him for the then three available slots.

Edited by Asashosakari
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Juryo yusho race through Day 12:

10-2 J4w Ichiyamamoto

9-3 J7e Oho, J13e Asanowaka, J14w Kotokuzan

8-4 J1w Wakamotoharu, J6e Kotoshoho, J11e Enho

A new sole leader with Ichiyamamoto, who dispatched fellow contender Kotokuzan himself and benefitted from Oho losing for the third straight day, this time to Tsurugisho. Rookie Asanowaka has worked his way into contention with six wins on the trot, and the torikumi gods permitting he still has it in his own hands as he has yet to face the leader.

I'm inclined to say that the 8-4's aren't going to figure into the decision from here, but that hypothesis will get tested soon enough as one of them is facing Ichiyamamoto next and can help them all close the gap.

Up for Day 13:

J11e Enho (8-4)       -  J4w Ichiyamamoto (10-2)

J7e  Oho (9-3)        -  J14w Kotokuzan (9-3)

J12e Tohakuryu (7-5)  -  J13e Asanowaka (9-3)

J6e  Kotoshoho (8-4)  -  J11w Hakuyozan (6-6)
J7w  Daishoho (6-6)   -  J1w Wakamotoharu (8-4)

Lower division yusho races:

6-0 Ms33e Chiyonoumi (Kokonoe)
6-0 Ms47w Ryuden (Takadagawa)

6-0 Sd42e Arauma (Isenoumi)
6-0 Sd60w Taiyo (Onoe)
6-0 Sd100Td Kinbozan (Kise)

6-0 Jd11e Kaiho (Tomozuna)
6-0 Jd61w Yurikisho (Tokiwayama)
6-0 Jd81w Chiyoyamato (Kokonoe)

6-0 Jk10w Inoue (Kise)

Another matchmaking curveball was thrown in the creation of the Day 13 torikumi - they really don't want to make it easy for Kinbozan to debut with a 7-0 here (never mind the yusho), so rather than go in ranking order as usual and do Arauma-Taiyo and Kinbozan-Kaiho, they mashed things up into Arauma-Kinbozan and Taiyo-Kaiho instead. That left Inoue to pick up a 5-1 opponent after all, with Jd91w Tsukubayama getting the call.

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Day 13 (results, text-only results)

13-0 Ye Terunofuji

12-1 M15w Abi

11-2 Ow Takakeisho

Yokozuna Terunofuji easily prevailed over today's aite Mitakeumi, and took a big step towards becoming the first yokozuna since Taiho (!) to win his first two tournaments after promotion. His chances were arguably helped by the outcome of the match between his two pursuers, which was won convincingly by Abi, not Takakeisho, taking things out of the hands of his most troublesome challenger. Takakeisho will now have to rely on Abi pulling off another upset tomorrow, when he goes against the leader.

Mitakeumi's fade with three losses in his last four matches has not done much for his ozeki hopes, but he might become a beneficiary of Abi's run here - he's certain to avoid at least one ozeki aite this basho, and may end up not facing either one if they decide to do Terunofuji-Takakeisho and Shodai-Abi on senshuraku. In any case, he's certain to go into the next tournament with a new West side counterpart at sekiwake after Meisei dropped to makekoshi against Endo today. Takanosho is the clear frontrunner to inherit the spot having gone up to 9-4 with a decisive victory over underranked Hokutofuji today.

Two sanyaku slots will be available for sure even if Meisei hangs on to his as komusubi, as Ichinojo was also sent to MK by Ura and will join Kiribayama on the way back to the maegashira ranks. Outside of Takanosho it's a wide open race at this point, with what might be as many as six candidates still. (Or seven if a promotion were in the offing for a yusho winner Abi, although that would go against a lot of recent precedent.)

    13-0  Terunofuji    Y    ---
     9-4  Shodai        O    Takakeisho   11-2
     9-4  Mitakeumi     S    Meisei        5-8
(x)  5-8  Ichinojo      K    Kiribayama    5-8  (x)

     6-7  Daieisho      M1   Wakatakakage  6-7
                        M2   Takanosho     9-4
     6-7  Okinoumi      M3
                        M4   Endo          7-6
                        M6   Tamawashi     9-4
    10-3  Ura           M7
                        M12  Hokutofuji    9-4  (x)
                        M15  Abi          12-1

As mentioned it's Terunofuji versus Abi tomorrow, while the ozeki are facing off after all. I wonder who they would set as Terunofuji's final opponent for Day 15 if the yusho is already decided tomorrow? There's no obvious answer here between Shodai as the higher-ranking ozeki and Takakeisho as the more winning one (and probably also the one the crowd would prefer to see).

Mitakeumi's first of possibly two ozeki-replacement opponents will be Tamawashi, while a Wakatakakage-Endo matchup should see the loser eliminated from sanyaku contention. Ura gets another sanyaku opponent in Meisei, which could serve to open up a third slot for which he would then become a major candidate to fill it.


A lot was cleared up in the low maegashira scene today with middle-ranked Kotoeko and Aoiyama finally securing undemotable records to make their tournament campaigns a little less forgettable. Yutakayama is also safe with his third straight win and has looked a lot more composed of late.

The Kotoeko/Aoiyama victories came at the expense of Kagayaki and Shohozan, both now sporting double-digit losses on their hoshitori. Kagayaki might not get an opportunity to tack on an 8th straight makuuchi MK in January after all, as demotion looms large. Probably safe now is Tochinoshin, having defeated Chiyotairyu today - he still needs one more shiroboshi by the numbers, but at least four slots are guaranteed to be opened up before his would be needed (Hakuho, Asanoyama, Shohozan and now Kagayaki), and juryo will only produce at most four properly promotable records now. The same should be true for Chiyomaru, and he didn't even need to win for it today. Kaisei was also on the losing side of the Day 13 action, and unlike the others he remains at risk as a 6-9 finish at the lowest rank is probably beyond what's acceptable for a lucky stay even without anyone obvious to take his spot from juryo.

Top-ranked juryo rikishi Tsurugisho has turned a 2-4 start around with 5 wins in the last 7 days, and he will now have two opportunities to clinch kachikoshi and an immediate return to the top flight. Other than that it wasn't a great day for those with promotion hopes: Oho, Kotoshoho, Bushozan and Daiamami all lost, with Daiamami definitely out of the running with a makekoshi record.

(o)  3-10 Kotoeko       M8
(o)  4-9  Aoiyama       M9
                        M10  Asanoyama    susp. (x)
(o)  6-7  Yutakayama    M13  Tochinoshin  5-5-3 (1)
(~)  3-10 Kagayaki      M14
(1)  6-7  Chiyomaru     M15
(2)  6-7  Kaisei        M17  Shohozan      3-10 (x)

(1)  7-6  Tsurugisho    J1   Wakamotoharu  9-4  (o)
(x)  5-8  Daiamami      J2
                        J3   Bushozan      6-7  (~)
                        J4   Ichiyamamoto 11-2  (o)
(~)  8-5  Kotoshoho     J6
(2)  9-4  Oho           J7

Kotoshoho and Bushozan will meet on Day 14 to eliminate one more promotion contender, while Tsurugisho will try to secure his KK against Enho.


Chiyoarashi did the smart thing and approached the match with his hobbled aite Kyokutaisei in patient fashion to come out as the winner eventually. It's not a complete certainty yet that Kyokutaisei will get demoted as it's theoretically possible for him to improve his standing to fifth in the demotion queue and makushita only has four strong contenders for promotion, but that appears to be a rather inconceivable scenario at this point.

Yago and Kyokushuho were also defeated today and find themselves on the bubble entering the final weekend. Newcomer Hiradoumi secured his spot for next basho, however, beating hapless upper-ranker Chiyonoo (now 3-10 at J5e).

                        J9   Kyokutaisei   2-11 (~)
(2)  4-9  Yago          J10
                        J12  Hokuseiho   0-2-11 (x)
                        J13  Hiradoumi     7-6  (o)
(2)  6-7  Kyokushuho    J14

                        Ms1  Kotoyusho     4-2  (o)
                        Ms2  Shiba         4-2
     4-2  Kitanowaka    Ms3
     5-2  Chiyoarashi   Ms4  Fukai         3-3
                        Ms5  Asabenkei     3-3

I hesitate to call it a done deal considering we've seen a lot of wacky promotion and non-promotion decisions in recent years, but Chiyoarashi should be in line for a long-awaited return to the paid ranks now, after 8+ years of hardship. At the moment he is only guaranteed to be fourth in line with three slots available, but tomorrow's torikumi sees Yago and Shiba face off, and Chiyoarashi really ought to be ranked ahead of the loser of that bout, either as the (at least) third of three promotees or as the fourth of four. In other action it's Kyokushuho against Nishikigi (J5w 6-7) with makekoshi and possibly demotion on the line, and Asabenkei will have his KK/MK decider in makushita against Shimazuumi (Ms6e 3-3).

Fukai will be making an appearance in juryo on senshuraku, possibly to be joined by both Kotoyusho and Kitanowaka (who will otherwise fight each other).

Edit: I almost forgot - today's loss by Kyokutaisei that opened up a third slot should be enough to guarantee Kotoyusho's juryo debut.

Edited by Asashosakari
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Juryo yusho race through Day 13:

11-2 J4w Ichiyamamoto

10-3 J14w Kotokuzan

9-4 J1w Wakamotoharu, J7e Oho, J13e Asanowaka

The pursuer matchup went in Kotokuzan's favour, resulting in Oho's fourth straight defeat. It wasn't enough to join the lead, however, as Ichiyamamoto prevailed against Enho as well. Kotokuzan is now the only rikishi that's one off the pace after Asanowaka fell against Tohakuryu in rather decisive fashion.

We're officially down to these five yusho contenders, who happen to be the same top five we already had two days ago (although they were all within one win of each other back then).

Up for Day 14:

J13e Asanowaka (9-4)   -  J4w  Ichiyamamoto (11-2)

J8e  Midorifuji (7-6)  -  J14w Kotokuzan (10-3)

J7e  Oho (9-4)         -  J13w Hiradoumi (7-6)
J10w Azumaryu (8-5)    -  J1w  Wakamotoharu (9-4)

Asanowaka is the last co-contender that Ichiyamamoto can face, so if things aren't decided yet after tomorrow they'll have to source a senshuraku opponent elsewhere as his final yusho test. Maybe somebody from makuuchi? Kotokuzan is also done so similar considerations may apply to him, albeit at the opposite end of the banzuke. Should Asanowaka manage to keep the race open by defeating Ichiyamamoto, he could face whoever of Wakamotoharu and Oho has also moved up to 10-4 (if either of them does, that is). No other matches are possible among these five contenders.

Lower division yusho races (Day 13 results):

6-1 Ms33e Chiyonoumi (Kokonoe)
7-0 Ms47w Ryuden (Takadagawa)

6-1 Sd42e Arauma (Isenoumi)
6-1 Sd60w Taiyo (Onoe)
7-0 Sd100Td Kinbozan (Kise)

7-0 Jd11e Kaiho (Tomozuna)
7-0 Jd61w Yurikisho (Tokiwayama)
6-1 Jd81w Chiyoyamato (Kokonoe)

7-0 Jk10w Inoue (Kise)

We're going to get a playoff in jonidan rather than in sandanme, after all, after heavyweight Kaiho won a long and plodding shoving duel against higher-division aite Taiyo. Up in sandanme Kinbozan was not to be stopped even by the schedulers throwing the highest possible opponent at him, and truth be told he looked entirely superior to Arauma. Next stop the bottom of makushita, where the collegiate wrestler from Kazakhstan may not be a yusho winner again (or maybe he will be?), but 6 wins will surely be an attainable target. Arauma will be making his makushita debut as well, but I suspect he'll have his hands full there. (Probably ruling out a rematch as well; Arauma should be ranked around Ms55, far enough from Kinbozan that it ought to take 3-0 starts from both to get in range of being paired up.)

The jonidan playoff will see Kaiho face off against Yurikisho, who had no trouble disposing of Chiyoyamato. He'll probably be the underdog against Kaiho who has been as high as Ms50, although Kaiho's sumo is almost all body and an energetic type like Yurikisho just might find a way to prevail.

Ryuden-Chiyonoumi wasn't a quick affair, but the ex-maegashira Ryuden never really looked troubled en route to his eventual yusho-clinching win. I'll have to walk back on my pronouncement that the winner is certain to move up into the top 5 ranks for a full promotion opportunity in January - I suppose it wouldn't be shocking to see them make a point of not handing it to bad boy Ryuden the easy way, and putting him just outside at Ms6e or something so that he'll need another 7 wins next time. Chiyonoumi for his part should be moving up to near the end of the top 15 zone off his 6-1 record.

And finally, the jonokuchi yusho of course went Inoue's way, the mid-makushita regular having no problem at all in dispatching his final aite Tsukubayama. He'll be the favourite to win the jonidan title next time out, too, I reckon.

Edited by Asashosakari
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I've followed him loosely due to his wrestling accomplishments prior to joining ozumo. He obviously had some aptitude for the sport, but starting with virtually no sumo background it makes sense that it would take him a while to settle in. I imagine the improvement is accumulated experience and perhaps the influence of the younger Sadogatake sekitori.

Edited by Katooshu
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9 minutes ago, Katooshu said:

He obviously had some aptitude for the sport

Glancing at his record, I notice that he has another invaluable attribute- he doesn't get injured, touch wood (or touch birch-veneer fibreboard).

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I do hope that Hiradoumi can hang on in juryo. He has shown a lot of promise and has fought hard to overcome a 2-5 first week. He will probably get Midorifuji on Sunday which is no picnic.

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So the M1s continue to hang on to their KK and sanyaku hopes, giving us lots of possible Komusubi still after Day 14.  Takanosho has definitely wrapped up a return to Sekiwake which will finally return to sanyaku 2 rikishi in the same heya, which have been missing since Takanosho's demotion out of sanyaku.  11 wins for Takanosho might also be the beginning of an Ozeki run for him, but I've made my view known elsewhere on the likelihood of that succeeding. For the remaining two slots, we should have the following priority:

Meisei with a win
Daieisho with a win
Wakatakakage with a win
Ura with a win
Tamawashi with a win
Ura with a loss
Endo with a win??
Tamawashi with a loss

None of the candidates are against other candidates, so it's not until the last line we get the two Komusubi needed for sure.  I'm not positive on where to put Endo with a win.  He'll tie Tamawashi by the numbers should the latter lose and have a much more complete sanyaku schedule, so I'm guessing he'd get the nod.  It's also possible that he'll even be ahead of Ura with a loss despite being 3 slots worse by the numbers, simply due to the full Y+O+S schedule and the sanyaku experience.

A third Komusubi spot is unlikely, as only Meisei and Daieisho will really be forced to be ranked as Komusubi with wins.  If they win and so does Wakatakakage, well, too bad for the latter.

Also note the very small chance of finally getting Endo and Daieisho into sanyaku at the same time for another same-heya pair there.

Edited by Gurowake
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For demotions out of Makuuchi, we'll have Asanoyama, Shohozan and most likely Kagayaki (and definitely with a loss), along with possibly Kaisei with a loss, but Kagayaki would still get demoted first.  That's 3-5 spots counting Hakuho's blank spot.

For promotions from Juryo, we'll have Wakamotoharu, Tsurugisho, and Ichiyamamoto for sure taking the 3 definite spots.  If Oho wins or Kagayaki loses, the former should take the latter's spot.  If Oho loses and Kagayaki wins, the latter has some hope of staying.  Kaisei is likely safe with no one closer to taking his spot than Oho taking Kagayaki's in the worst case scenario.  It's within the realm of possibility still though that Oho will be promoted regardless, and Bushozan takes Kaisei's spot if the former wins and latter loses.

The analysis for Kaisei doesn't take into consideration the fact that there will almost certainly be an M18e for a 7-8 Kaisei to naturally fall to; from past experiences it seems they look more at the current banzuke than the next one when determining exchanges.  However, they can always change their mind, and that's another factor in Kaisei's favor.

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For slots in Juryo we have Hakuho's open spot plus Hokuseiho and Kyokutaisei definitely demoted.  Yago and Kyokushuho can maybe hang on with wins.  Again, 3-5 spots.

We have three exchange bouts between Juryo and Makushita: Fukai vs. Churanoumi, Yago vs. Kotoyusho, and Kitanowaka vs. Kyokushuho; they all have some potential effect.  For Makushita promotions, the rough order should be:

Kotoyusho with a win => Yago definitely demoted
?Kitanowaka with a win => Kyokushuho definitely demoted
?Kotoyusho with a loss => Yago might hang on
Kitanowaka with a loss => Kyokushuho might hang on
Fukai with a win
Shimazuumi (or Tamashoho?)

I'm not sure on the order of 5-2 Kitanowaka and 4-3 Kotoyusho, but I don't think it matters since Kitanowaka winning opens up a 4th spot for sure.  Shiba is obviously guaranteed a spot, and it appears Kotoyusho and Chiyoarashi are as well.  Kitanowaka might still force down Kyokushuho or Yago should both of the latter win (which implies Kitanowaka loses); I'm not going to look at history here to see how often a 4-3 Ms3 forces down a minimally demotable Juryo rikishi, and I don't know which one of them it likely would be, but recent history suggests that Kitanowaka failing his final foray into Juryo means he'll be denied a spot if possible.  Kitanowaka definitely gets in with a loss though if Kotoyusho beats Yago.  Fukai needs both Kotoyusho and Kitanowaka (as well as himself) to win, while someone outside the normal promotion zone will get promoted in the event Kotoyusho and Kitanowaka win and Fukai loses.  That will most likely be Shimazuumi, but there's an argument for Tamashoho instead.

Edited by Gurowake
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