(Thanksgiving Holiday commentary hiatus)
Yokozuna Hakuho takes sole lead of the Kyushu Basho with a perfect 6-0 record, after the other undefeated wrestlers all lost today. He dominates Shohozan from start to finish, locking up the left-handed overarm grip soon after the tachiai and marching Shohozan to the edge where he deposits him not-so-gently over the straw bales and onto the ground. Winning technique is uwatenage (overarm throw). Shohozan falls to 2-4.
Yokozuna Kisenosato needs to get as many wins in the first half of the tournament as he can before he has to fight the strong Ozeki and Yokozuna contingent later on. It still doesn’t seem like he’s at 100%, but he looks good enough today against Tochiozan, who loses for the sixth time in a row. Kisenosato improves to 4-2.
Both Ozekis lose today, with Takakeisho continuing a very successful first week of the tournament by notching his belt with an Ozeki win to add to two Yokozuna upsets. I’m a little disappointed by Takayasu’s lack of fight at the end of the bout, as he appears to give up once he gets close to the edge. Both men finish the day at 4-2.
Chiyotairyu holds his own at the tachiai against Ozeki Goeido, as the two men smash into each other with great vigor. The match is a fine display of tsuppari (slaps/thrusts) and general shoving, with Chiyotairyu using his bulk well to control the more experienced Goeido. Goiedo loses for the first time this tournament, joining a large contingent of 5-1 wrestlers right behind undefeated Yokozuna Hakuho.
Like a violent, meaty, horizontal yo-yo, Mitakeumi and Onosho battle back and forth the length of the doyho several times before Mitakeumi prevails. Any guesses as to how Onosho loses? Yup, falling forward. Come on, Onosho, keep your feet under you. You not reading the blog or something?
Good persistence by Okinoumi today against Endo. He grabs onto Endo’s left arm, mostly to defend against Endo’s underarm grip, but also threatening a kotenage (armlock throw). When Endo switches to the right-handed overarm grip, Okinoumi loses his hold on Endo’s left arm for a moment, but clamps down again when Endo regains the underarm grip on that side. Now at the ring’s edge, Okinoumi sets his hips and cranks hard on Endo’s upper arm, twisting him into the clay. Endo falls to 3-3, while Okinoumi has quietly amassed five wins against only one loss.