September 2017, Day 14, Shohozan v Chiyomaru

Shohozan doesn’t use throwing techniques very often, but his underarm throw (shitatenage) today against Chiyomaru is excellent. Using a strong right-handed grip, he pulls hard and swings his round opponent, Chiyomaru’s feet flailing in vain as he topples over. Both men finish the day at 8-6.


September 2017, Day 12, Endo v Sadanoumi

Alright, Endo’s out of the doghouse. Two consecutive makekoshi (one due to injury) sent him plummeting from M1 to M14, and he was in danger of dropping out of the top division with another losing record this tournament. But he earns his eighth win against a struggling Sadanoumi, fighting off Sadanoumi’s attempts at a belt grip to get a double-underarm belt grip of his own, which he quickly turns into a fine underarm throw (shitatenage) that sends Sadanoumi tumbling out of the ring. Sadanoumi has yet to win a bout after returning from injury on Day 6.

September 2017, Day 2, Tochinoshin v Harumafuji

As the lone member of the Yokozuna contingent participating in the September tournament, Harumafuji seems to be making a statement early. He’s meeting his opponents head-on and beating them with pure strength and technique, without a whiff of trickery. (I happen to have no problem with Harumafuji’s usual technique of sliding around the side at the tachiai, but others find it questionable.) Today he smashes face-first into Tochinoshin, catching the taller wrestler off-guard and quickly securing belt grips with both hands. Before Tochinoshin can use his height advantage to pull him in close, Harumafuji pivots and tosses Tochinoshin to the dirt with incredible core strength. The Yokozuna shows great balance, anchored to the ground and completely in control. Winning technique is shitatenage (underarm throw).

May 2017, Day 14, Ishiura v Takarafuji

Ishiura’s hopes of a winning record and promotion stay alive, and he’ll move into the last day with a record of 7-7. Fighting off the larger Takarafuji at the edge of the ring, Ishiura gets a left hand around to the back of Takarafuji’s belt, swinging sideways and turning that circular momentum into a smooth underarm throw. Ishiura plants his feet in a wide stance, and you can watch the power flow through his hips all the way to his arm as he tosses Takarafuji down to his eleventh loss.