Monday, May 26, 2008


The outcome of the summer sumo tournament

Despite my scepticism, Bulgarian ozeki Koto-oshu defeated both yokozuna in the second week of the natsu-basho (Summer sumo tournament) to win his first grand prize. Indeed, had it not been for a painful drubbing at the hands of Aminishiki on day 13, Koto would have finished the tournament unbeaten. His 14-1 record is his best performance to date in any case, and certainly figures worthy of a champion.

Koto-oshu began the tournament under the threat of a rank demotion after his dismal showing and early withdrawal at the spring tournament. This and his previously unspectacular performances as an ozeki may disqualify him from yokozuna consideration in the event of a second successive victory in Nagoya, although his victories against both yokozuna in this tournament reflect favourably on his chances.

The two incumbent yokozuna, meanwhile, lit up the last day's dead rubber with a lack of hinkaku in their bout: Asa won, but then gave the fallen Hakuho an unnecessary shove, to which the latter reacted with a shoulder charge to Asa's chest. The two exchanged glares before returning to their respective sides of the ring. Undoubtedly, both must be frustrated that their showpiece bout was meaningless in terms of the title, Koto-oshu having established an unassailable lead with his 13th victory the previous day. Asashoryu had at least the satisfaction of dragging himself level with Hakuho on the last day, but neither will be satisfied with their 11-4 records.

Of the ozeki, Chiyotaikai will be hoping for a Koto-oshu-esque performance in Nagoya: he will be competing under the threat of demotion, having been dismal here (5 wins, 10 losses.) Both VMM and I were hoping that both of the other ozeki would see their parking spaces similarly jeopardised (see "perks of being an ozeki", previous sumo-related post.) Sadly, Kaio managed to tie up his kachi-koshi (majority win) prior to the last day, then meekly submitted to Kotomitsuki yesterday, giving the latter his eighth win. Fix!

Ama picked up the technique award for the third time. Stablemate Aminishiki got the achievement award, whilst Kisenosato and Toyonoshima won the fighting spirit awards.

Jon Kunimura-lookalike Kisenosato: an ozeki in the making?


Sumo links now available on the right!


Jon Kunimura-lookalike! AHAHAHAHAHA!!!
You can't see it so much here, but if you check video footage, WATCH THE BLINKING. It's amazing.
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