Friday, July 18, 2008


Sumo: Nagoya basho

The sun is shining and the cicadas have come out of hiding virtually overnight. Not that I give a toss: the sumo's on!

Yes fans, the Nagoya grand tournament is on at the moment, which means more time in Softmap and similar for YHN.

Big news of the first five days or so:

1. Koto-oshu's bid for a promotion to Yokozuna went bad faster than yoghurt: set a daunting task of overall tournament victory with a record no worse than 14-1 to achieve the level up to sumo's highest echelon, the towering time-waster was dead in the water by the end of day three, having already suffered two defeats.

Was Koto's stunning victory in the summer tournament a flash in the pan? The answer is obviously yes: I fully expect him to be fighting to keep his rank again in the next tournament, the worthless bum.

2. Faring no better is Asa, whose record currently stands at three wins and two defeats. After blotting his copy book on day one (for the second consecutive tournament) Asa came a cropper against perennial palooka Tochinonada yesterday. After a lengthy bout, both fell out of the ring together, the judges conducted a brief discussion and Tochinonada got the nod.

TV replays actually indicated that Tochi's hand had touched the ground first, but as this was due to Asa having been thrown clean off the raised ring, the yokozuna can hardly claim a victory. The best course of action would have been to hold a rematch, but the judges obviously fancied trying to beat the traffic home. Guh.

3. Further bad news for Asa is that arch-rival Hakuho has a spotless 5-0 record thus far. This means that if Asa is to have any chance of winning the tournament, he'll have to keep his powder dry from now on and hope that Hakuho slips up at least once ahead of the 15th day.

Sharing Hakuho's lead, happily enough, is Ama! I'll be pretty surprised if he's still in the running come next weekend, but stranger things have happened.

Meanwhile, I'm trying to sort out a trip to Nagoya this Sunday to see the fun. Fingers crossed!


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