March 2018, Day 14, Chiyonokuni v Daieisho

Daieisho does not like the anatomical fact that Chiyonokuni’s head is directly connected to his body, and expends great effort to alter that physical arrangement. Chiyonokuni, being rather fond of the current setup, resists a bit. This resistance lets Daieisho fling Chiyonokuni down to his eighth loss, a result that is disappointing for Chiyonokuni and acceptable for Daieisho, if less than satisfying than the whole head-removal scenario.

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March 2018, Day 13, Ikioi v Chiyonokuni

Wait, Ikioi has ten wins? He’s been quietly having a fantastic tournament, showing good energy and mobility, and churning through the bottom of the division from his M14 rank. Great bout against Chiyonokuni, who requires anyones full attention. The tachiai is strong from both men, and Ikioi immediately attempts a pull-down that Chiyonokuni avoids. Everything after that is a blur of arms until Ikioi has Chiyonokuni at the edge of the ring and tackles him, managing to take Chiyonokuni out before Ikioi falls down himself.

March 2018, Day 10, Nishikigi v Chiyonokuni

There’s hikiotoshi, and there’s hikiotoshi. This one’s the latter. Chiyonokuni sets up the pull down by snapping Nishikigi’s head back at the chin before yanking down hard. I don’t know if Nishikigi’s ever been in a car wreck, but he knows what whiplash feels like.

March 2018, Day 9, Chiyonokuni v Yoshikaze

There’s the ol’ Yoshikaze I feel like we’ve been missing this tournament. Got some oomph in his britches. And speaking of britches, he almost de-pants Chiyonokuni at the end, grabbing the knot on the back of Chiyonokuni’s mawashi and unraveling it as he pulls him to the ground. Unintentional, surely, but risky just the same.

March 2018, Day 8, Abi v Chiyonokuni

A rare throwing technique from the beanpole Abi, who usually launches into his opponent at a 45ยบ angle with his feet way behind his body and either shoves them out or falls down trying. He starts out as usual, both hands landing on Chiyonokuni’s shoulders at the tachiai and standing both men upright, but he transitions quickly into a pulling attack with his left hand on Chiyonokuni’s head and his right hand finding a home on Chiyonokuni’s belt. Chiyonokuni charges forward and falls right into the trap, with Abi using his momentum against him and throwing him down by uwatenage (overarm throw). Abi’s technique is somewhat less than flawless, and he flops down to the clay a split second after Chiyonokuni. He’s not even sure he won, and has to look up to the referee to catch the decision.

March 2018, Day 7, Daiamami v Chiyonokuni

Chiyonokuni wants to swing away, and Daiamami just wants the belt. With the weight differential, Chiyonokuni is wise to try and keep Daiamami away with well-aimed slaps to the head, and the first time Daiamami gets a belt grip Chiyonokuni uses a left-arm sukuinage to slip out to the side and regain some distance. Back to the face and neck goes Chiyonokuni, until Daiamami leans forward with his bulk and secures the left-handed overarm grip. Marching forward inexorably, he adds the deep underarm grip with his right hand, and throws Chiyonokuni all the way to the floor by uwatenage (overarm throw). Daiamami is hanging in there near the top of the leader board with an excellent 6-1 record. Chiyonokuni falls to 5-2.

March 2018, Day 6, Kotoyuki v Chiyonokuni

Kotoyuki missed the previous two days to injury and rejoins the tournament on Day 6, desperately needing a win to fend off a potentially horrible record. But Chiyonokuni has always given him trouble, and has been performing great so far. Despite a good tachiai, Kotoyuki can’t push Chiyonokuni out, and when Chiyonokuni gets a right hand on Kotoyuki’s belt he spins Kotoyuki around and pounces. Kotoyuki falls to 0-5-1, and Chiyonokuni improves to 5-1.