A lot of subtext behind this bout. The old guard, Ozeki Goeido, needing just a winning record this tournament to preserve his rank. The new(ish) guy, Takayasu, looking for a promotion to the rank of Ozeki if he can get at least ten wins. And it’s Takayasu who appears more motivated, blasting Goeido off the line with a massive tachiai that sends him reeling. The rest is academic, and it’s over a few thrusts and steps later.
Myogiryu’s spent the last two years in a steady fall from the high rank of Komusubi, and now finds himself near the bottom of the top division. Chiyotairyu has spent the same time span bouncing up and down between the top two divisions. Both would love to put together a solid tournament to get out of danger of falling to Juryo (again), but it’s Chiyotairyu who starts off the Natsu Basho in Tokyo with a bang. A solid tachiai puts Myogiryu on his heels, and Chiyotairyu follows with some sharp thrusts that finish the job with no trouble.
Daieisho takes on the hard-charging Kotoyuki, and they proceed to try and knock each other’s heads off. Trading stiff-armed nodowa (throat push) and tsuppari slaps, Daieisho gets the upper hand and sends Kotoyuki off the dohyo to his tenth loss. Daieisho, wrestling from the M11 rank and finishing the tournament with an excellent 11-4 record, can expect to see a new career-high ranking next time around.
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).
Takayasu’s got something special going on at the tachiai. He’s been blowing everyone off the line with his initial charge, and it sets up his straight-forward style of sumo nicely. Once he has the center of the ring he’s in charge. Today Sokokurai can’t get anything going, and soon finds himself standing on the wrong side of the tawara. Takayasu stays perfect at 7-0, tied with Yokozuna Kisenosato for the tournament lead.
Shohozan picks up his first-ever win over Yokozuna Kakuryu, and his first win of the tournament on Day 6. Nothing fancy, he just executes his brand of sumo to perfection with sharp thrusts to the upper body that get Kakuryu off-balance, and finishing strong at the edge. Kakuryu falls to 4-2.
Chiyonokuni: “Hey, Endo, here’s a hand in your face.”