March 2017, Day 15, Sadanoumi v Okinoumi

Okinoumi looks primed for a return to the top half of the division where he belongs, earning his tenth win of the tournament on the final day. With Okinoumi pushing hard towards the edge, Sadanoumi tries a reversal with the underarm throw from the left side.  But Okinoumi has a good arm lock on that side and reverses the reversal, finishing Sadanoumi with the right-handed kotenage (arm lock throw).

March 2017, Day 14, Ichinojo v Sadanoumi

Ichinojo looks to be headed back to the lower half of the top division, earning his makekoshi (losing record) on Day 14 against Sadanoumi. He muscles Sadanoumi around at the tachiai, swinging the smaller wrestler right to the edge, but Sadanoumi gets his foot planted in the toku-dawara and fights back to the middle. They’re locked up with fairly equivalent migi-yotsu grips, but Ichinojo uses his bulk well to once again push Sadanoumi to the edge. But Sadanoumi has one last trick up his sleeve, dancing away along the tawara to the left and using his left-hand overarm grip to send Ichinojo lumbering off the dohyo with an uwatedashinage (pulling overarm throw). Sadanoumi, with only four wins from the M12 slot, might be demoted as far down as Juryo next tournament.

March 2017, Day 12, Daieisho v Sadanoumi

Daieisho tries to pull down Sadanoumi, but Sadanoumi hangs on to Daieisho’s belt and the judges decide that they both go out at the same time. So we have a rematch! The second time around Daieisho doesn’t pull. He pushes. And pushes. And pushes. Sadanoumi can’t hang on this time and Daieisho wins by tsukidashi (front thrust out).

March 2017, Day 11, Sadanoumi v Tokushoryu

Tokushoryu fights through both of Sadanoumi’s belt grips, breaking the right with pressure from below, and powering forward to push Sadanoumi off the edge and down to the floor below. Tokushoryu’s momentum carries him off the dohyo as well, and he kind of slithers down on top of poor Sadanoumi. A slight nod of apology takes care of the awkward indiscretion.

March 2017, Day 5, Sadanoumi v Kotoyuki

Sadanoumi did not like being tossed by Ishiura yesterday, so he takes it out on Kotoyuki with a pretty overarm throw. He draws Kotoyuki in before setting his feet and shifting his hips, using the left-handed belt grip to toss Kotoyuki onto his back. This is the first time in five career meetings that Sadanoumi has defeated Kotoyuki. Both wrestlers sit at 1-4 for the tournament.

March 2017, Day 4, Sadanoumi v Ishiura

OK, get out your notebooks, Ishiura’s teaching class today. This is a prime example of a picture-perfect shitatehineri (twisting underarm throw).

Step 1: Underarm grip. Left side. As far around the back as you can reach.

Step 2: Front-belt grip. Right hand. 180 degrees from your other hand.

Step 3: Pull with the left, push with the right. Like opening a giant jar of pickles, except the jar is your opponent and let’s not take the pickles metaphor too far, ‘kay?

March 2017, Day 3, Tochinoshin v Sadanoumi

The energy expended in this one short bout could probably power a small mountain village for a year. Sadanoumi and Tochinoshin lock up with equal migi-yotsu (right-hand under, left-hand over) grips, and then it’s a contest of strength. Sadanoumi has a slightly lower position and works Tochinoshin back towards the edge of the ring. But Tochinoshin has a crushing overarm grip on the left side, and starts to swing Sadanoumi around in a reversal. Sadanoumi defends by wrapping his right leg around Tochinoshin’s left, trying to get some leverage to keep his position towards the center of the ring. But Tochinoshin digs deep and muscles Sadanoumi around, finishing the bout with a mighty shove. Exhausting.