May 2017, Day 1, Okinoumi v Goeido

Ozeki Goeido is kadoban this tournament due to his 1-5-9 losing record last time out, so he needs to finish at least 8-7 to avoid being demoted from the Ozeki rank that he’s held since 2014. But Okinoumi is no pushover, and provides a stiff challenge on Day 1. Okinoumi brings a big right arm to the side of Goeido’s head at the tachiai, but Goeido shrugs it off and locks onto a left-handed underarm grip. The next sequence happens incredibly quickly, and gives me hope for Goeido’s chances this tournament – he goes for a reversal on the right side, jamming his right arm in-between his body and Okinoumi’s left arm. Okinoumi lets go with his left arm to push on Goeido’s shoulder, trying to keep Goeido from extending his right arm underneath. There’s a split-second pause before Okinoumi reaches forward with his left arm, looking again for the belt grip on that side, but that’s precisely the moment when Goeido leaps backward, pulling his hips out of the way. Okinoumi is grasping at air while Goeido pushes down on his back and pulls with the left-handed underarm grip, and a nifty spin atop the tawara keeps Goeido in the ring while Okinoumi crashes to the dirt. The winning technique is shitatedashinage, or pulling underarm throw.

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