January 2017, Day 15, Terunofuji v Kotoshogiku

Two sad Ozeki on the last day of the tournament. Terunofuji goes back on kadoban status with a 4-11 record, meaning he’ll get one more chance at a winning record next tournament to keep his Ozeki rank. Kotoshogiku was kadoban this tournament, so his 5-10 record means he gets demoted from the Ozeki rank he’s held since November of 2011. Normally, a promotion to Ozeki requires thirty-three wins in three consecutive tournaments from the Komusubi or Sekiwake ranks, but a freshly demoted Ozeki gets a special deal. Next tournament Kotoshogiku will be Sekiwake, but if he puts up at least ten wins he can regain his Ozeki rank immediately. His victory over Terunofuji on the last day of this tournament is small consolation, and I bet he’d trade that huge stack of cash for an 8-7 record in an instant.

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