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  • Fantasy Basho

Aki 2023 Rikishi Preview

Updated: Aug 30, 2023

The game is LIVE on Fantasizr right now, and you can join the Public League or Create Your Own League. While you wait for the real sumo to start, enjoy this preview of all 42 Makuuchi rikishi. And remember: if you sign up on Fantasizr, you get our daily email with links to our write-up, scores, and highlights.

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01 Yokozuna East Terunofuji

Terunofuji Haruo | 照ノ富士 春雄

Isegahama | Mongolia

Birthdate: November 29, 1991

Height: 192 cm

Weight: 174 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Yokozuna East

Nagoya 2023 Record: 1-3-11

The injury worries return. After winning a yusho in May, Terunofuji managed to last just three matches (with two losses) in July. Terunofuji is unquestionably the best rikishi in sumo if his knees allow him to compete all 15 days. That seems increasngly unlikely for each tournament.






02 Ozeki #1 East Kirishima

Kirishima Tetsuo | 霧島 鐵雄

Michinoku | Mongolia

Birthdate: April 24, 1996

Height: 186 cm

Weight: 143 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Ozeki West

Nagoya 2023 Record: 6-7-2

Kirishima debuted as an Ozeki by missing the first two days of the basho with a rib (or maybe back or possibly elbow) injury. It was minor and he returned on Day Four looking slightly less than homself. Despite that, he nearly avoided being kadoban, but not quite, and needing 8 wins in September to maintain his rank.





03 Ozeki #1 West Takakeisho

Takakeisho Takanobu | 貴景勝 貴信

Tokiwayama | Hyogo

Birthdate: August 5, 1996

Height: 175 cm

Weight: 165 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Ozeki East

Nagoya 2023 Record: 0-0-15

Takakeisho sat out all of the Nagoya basho, once again placing him in kadoban status and in danger of losing his Ozeki rank. Getting eight wins when he needs to has been an unfortunate trademark for the Battle Hamster. Just remember that if he really did take July off to heal and he is 100% healthy, he's a yusho favorite.




04 Ozeki #2 West Hoshoryu

Hoshoryu Tomokatsu | 豊昇龍 智勝

Tatsunami | Mongolia

Birthdate: May 22, 1999

Height: 188 cm

Weight: 142 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Sekiwake #1 East

Nagoya 2023 Record: 12-3 Yusho; Fighting Spirit Prize

Hoshoryu's yusho wasn't dominant, and he didn't storm into an Ozeki rank. He still collected the Emperor's Cup and had the performance for a promotion, all at the age of 24. Hoshoryu is not on the dai-Yokozuna path of his uncle Asashoryu, but he has a definite shot at the rope in the future.





05 Sekiwake #1 East Daieisho

Daieisho Hayato | 大栄翔 勇人

Oitekaze | Saitama

Birthdate: November 10, 1993

Height: 182 cm

Weight: 164 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Sekiwake #1 West

Nagoya 2023 Record: 9-6

Daieisho lost his Ozeki bid, not just for September but overall. If he gets 14 at Aki, he would be lifted to sumo's second-rank. 14 (an almost guaranteed yusho) is a tough ask, but he seems like a guarantee to get 8 as a Sekiwake. That is damn impressive.






06 Sekiwake #1 West Wakamotoharu

Wakamotoharu Minato | 若元春 港

Arashio | Fukushima

Birthdate: October 5, 1993

Height: 187 cm

Weight: 147 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Sekiwake #2 West

Nagoya 2023 Record: 9-6

Wakamotoharu could not get enough wins for an Ozeki run, but did clear kachi-koshi by an extra win. He will once again be a Sekiwake in September. This is an absolutely astonishing achievement for someone who was in Juryo two years ago. And he very likely could still build on his legend.





07 Sekiwake #2 East Kotonowaka

Kotonowaka Masahiro | 琴ノ若 傑太

Sadogatake | Chiba

Birthdate: November 19, 1997

Height: 189 cm

Weight: 176 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Komusubi East

Nagoya 2023 Record: 11-4; Fighting Spirit Prize

Kotonowaka had his best Sanyaku tournament by far in Nagoya. For a 25 year old this fundamentally solid, that could be the start of much, much more. A yusho or jun-yusho may even produce an Ozeki promotion by November, although any such talk is likely a little further down the line.





08 Komusubi East Nishikigi

Nishikigi Tetsuya | 錦木 徹也

Isenoumi | Iwate

Birthdate: August 25, 1990

Height: 185 cm

Weight: 180 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #1 East

Nagoya 2023 Record: 10-5; Outstanding Performance Prize

On Day Seven, Nishikigi came in undefeated and on a fourteen match win streak dating to May. He lost to Kotonowaka then, and then dropped his last four matches to fall completely out of the yusho race. That shouldn't take away from his remarkable basho in July, which is giving him a Sanyaku debut as a 33 year old in his seventeenth year of professional sumo.



09 Komusubi West Tobizaru

Tobizaru Masaya | 翔猿 正也

Oitekaze | Tokyo

Birthdate: April 24, 1992

Height: 174 cm

Weight: 135 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #1 West

Nagoya 2023 Record: 9-6

The Flying Monkey had his usual chaotic tournament, this time resulting in a strong nine wins. He should have had ten, since he clearly won a match against eventual yusho winner Hoshoryu on Day One the gothic called the wrong way. Tobizaru is unpredictable, athletic, and fun, with an increasing ability to put together winning records against the top ranks.



10 Maegashira #1 East Hokutofuji

Hokutofuji Daiki | 北勝富士 大輝

Hakkaku | Saitama

Birthdate: July 15, 1992

Height: 184 cm

Weight: 158 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #9 West

Nagoya 2023 Record: 12-3 Jun-Yusho; Fighting Spirit Prize

It was very nearly Hokutofuji's basho. He was 9-1 after Day Ten, in control of his own destiny. He ended up dropping two match and the losing the playoff to Hoshoryu. The Jun-Yusho and Fighting Spirit Prize may be the career high point for the 31 year old, but he may have found a career resurgence.




11 Maegashira #1 West Meisei

Meisei Chikara | 明生 力

Tatsunami | Kagashima

Birthdate: July 24, 1995

Height: 180 cm

Weight: 154 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #3 West

Nagoya 2023 Record: 8-7

Meisei is creeping back toward a Sanyaku return after two straight 8-7 records. Yet he has also remained incredibly streaky. When he's hot, he looks like he could tussle with anyone. When he's not, he seems like he'll only get pushed around.






12 Maegashira #2 East Abi

Abi Masatora | 阿炎 政虎

Shikoroyama | Saitama

Birthdate: May 4, 1994

Height: 186 cm

Weight: 158 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Komusubi West

Nagoya 2023 Record: 6-9

Abi did Abi things in July, although more of the awkwardly-flailing-with-both-arms variety than the knocking-the-other-guy-back version. Slightly lower down the Banzuke now, he may be rejuvenated and be the dominant former yusho winner. Or at least survive at the edge enough for a winning record.





13 Maegashira #2 West Asanoyama

Asanoyama Hiroki | 朝乃山 広暉

Takasago | Toyama

Birthdate: March 1, 1994

Height: 189 cm

Weight: 168 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #4 East

Nagoya 2023 Record: 8-4-3

Asanoyama was pointing towards a quick return to Sanyaku and possibly a second Ozeki promotion. Instead, he got injured on Day Seven and missed four days of action. He still got the crucial 8 wins to move up, but the Sanyaku promotion will still take some work.





14 Maegashira #3 East Shodai

Shodai Naoya | 正代 直也

Tokitsukaze | Kumamoto

Birthdate: November 5, 1991

Height: 184 cm

Weight: 161 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #2 East

Nagoya 2023 Record: 6-9

The bad Shodai was very present in Nagoya, although even a poor performing Shodai has serious strength and excellent defense. His ability to control a match was seriously absent, which meant he was mostly fighting at the edge. No sumotori can succeed doing that, although Shodai at least can survive.





15 Maegashira #3 West Tamawashi

Tamawashi Ichiro | 玉鷲 一朗

Kataonami | Mongolia

Birthdate: November 16, 1984

Height: 189 cm

Weight: 174 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #7 West

Nagoya 2023 Record: 8-7

Tamawashi went 8-7, so he will move back up to the edge of the joi. He is 38, closer to 39, and he certainly isn't going to get faster, nimbler, or add new tricks. He also isn't losing much in terms of skill, providing a veteran gatekeeper for any up-and-coming youngster. (And they're all youngsters compared to Tamawashi.)





16 Maegashira #4 East Takanosho

Takanosho Nobuaki | 隆の勝 伸明

Tokiwayama | Chiba

Birthdate: November 14, 1994

Height: 183 cm

Weight: 170 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #9 East

Nagoya 2023 Record: 8-7

Takanosho was in Sanyaku in early 2022, then crashed down the Banzuke due to injury. He has settled himself again, but hasn't shown that Sanyaku ability anymore. Takanosho is a solid, tough to beat pusher-thruster who can manage a kachi-koshi from this rank.





17 Maegashira #4 West Ura

Ura Kazuki | 宇良 和輝

Kise | Osaka

Birthdate: June 22, 1992

Height: 175 cm

Weight: 143 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #4 West

Nagoya 2023 Record: 7-8

Ura has had two straight 7-8 records at the bottom of the joi. Basically, Mr. Pink can hang right around even against the toughest slate sumo can throw at a rikishi. He'll take his bendy brand of fun sumo to just outside the joi and may find more success not facing Sankyaku men as often.




18 Maegashira #5 East Gonoyama

Gonoyama Toki | 豪ノ山 登輝

Takekuma | Osaka

Birthdate: April 7, 1998

Height: 177 cm

Weight: 154 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #13 East

Nagoya 2023 Record: 10-5; Fighting Spirit Prize

Gonoyama had a very good Makuuchi debut, somehwat overshadowed by a sensational Makuuchi debut. Earning 10 wins and a special prize is stellar work, and he is a 25 year old with a great track record. You can debate his ceiling, but probably around how high in Sanyaku he can go.




19 Maegashira #5 West Shonannoumi

Shonannoumi Momotaro | 湘南乃海 桃太郎

Takadagawa | Kanagawa

Birthdate: April 8, 1998

Height: 193 cm

Weight: 186 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #14 West

Nagoya 2023 Record: 10-5; Fighting Spirit Prize

Shonnanoumi was the "other debutant" for much of Nagoya, behind Gonoyama and Hakuoho. All he did was go 10-5 with a Fighting Spirit Prize. His potential isn't that high--he is a 25-year-old slap-down specialist--but he should be a Makuuchi man for awhile.




20 Maegashira #6 East Onosho

Onosho Fumiya | 阿武咲 奎也

Onomatsu | Aomori

Birthdate: July 4, 1996

Height: 177 cm

Weight: 165 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #5 West

Nagoya 2023 Record: 6-9

Onosho went just high enough in the Banzuke to find a losing record again. Sumo's most notable bowling ball could knock aside enough other rikishi with a demotion. Even then, he's likely to get too far forward and fall on his face at least once or twice.





21 Maegashira #6 West Ryuden

Ryuden Goshi | 竜電 剛至

Takadagawa | Yamanashi

Birthdate: November 10, 1990

Height: 188 cm

Weight: 155 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #15 East

Nagoya 2023 Record: 10-5

Ryuden was in danger of crashing back into Juryo, then put up 10 wins at Nagoya. This is not an unusual pattern for Ryuden, and a promotion could easily be accompanied by another bad record. He is also still long, wiry, and extremely smart on the dohyo.





22 Maegashira #7 East Takayasu

Takayasu Akira | 高安 晃

Tagonoura | Ibaraki

Birthdate: February 28, 1990

Height: 188 cm

Weight: 183 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #7 East

Nagoya 2023 Record: 7-8

Takayasu looked alot like a 33 year old former Ozeki. There were shades of his best self, but mostly he couldn't quite overpower or outmaneuver other wrestlers when he needed to. That still makes for a dangerous, smart veteran for any opponent who isn't 100% on their game.




23 Maegashira #7 West Oho

Oho Konosuke | 王鵬 幸之介

Otake | Tokyo

Birthdate: February 14, 2000

Height: 190 cm

Weight: 179 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #6 West

Nagoya 2023 Record: 6-9

Oho's slow ascent to the top of the sumo world once again took a step back. If someone wanted to build a theoretical rikishi from scratch, the result might look a lot like Oho. Yet those natural gifts often get stymied by uncertain game plans and problems with switching gears.




24 Maegashira #8 East Kotoeko

Kotoeko Mitsunori | 琴恵光 充憲

Sadogatake | Miyazaki

Birthdate: November 20, 1991

Height: 176 cm

Weight: 133 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #11 East

Nagoya 2023 Record: 8-7

Small but ripped and limited but fierce, Kotoeko got himself to 8 wins in Nagoya. That gives him some breathing room from a Juryo demotion. He seems extremely unlikely to get a surprise yusho shot, although he is almost the definition of fan favorite thanks to his scrappiness.




25 Maegashira #8 West Hiradoumi

Hiradoumi Yuki | 平戸海 雄貴

Sakaigawa | Nagasaki

Birthdate: April 20, 2000

Height: 177 cm

Weight: 135 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #5 East

Nagoya 2023 Record: 5-10

Hiradoumi was at a career high rank for Nagoya and looked it. Although small for a rikishi and not possessing overwhelming athleticism, Hiradoumi is young at 22 and has a great record. Seeing high level rikishi for the first time was a wake-up call, but long term he should be fine.




26 Maegashira #9 East Midorifuji

Midorifuji Kazunari | 翠富士 一成

Shizuoka | Isegahama

Birthdate: August 30, 1996

Height: 171 cm

Weight: 116 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #3 East

Nagoya 2023 Record: 4-11

Midorifuji is in that strange state of getting crushed while in upper Maegashira (and facing the top ranked rikishi), but winning decently in mid-Maegashira. So that means his awful Nagoya basho could lead to a strong Aki performance after his demotion. Or he got completely turned around.




27 Maegashira #9 West Hakuoho

Hakuoho Tetsuya | 伯桜鵬 哲也

Miyagino | Tottori

Birthdate: August 22, 2003

Height: 181 cm

Weight: 162 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #17 West

Nagoya 2023 Record: 11-4; Fighting Spirit Prize, Technique Prize

19 year olds in their fourth professional basho are not supposed to threaten for the yusho. That is exactly what Hakuoho did, and the only thing limitng his ceiling would seem to be possible injuries. He is very good, young, and has a career 42-10 record. He is sumo's future.



28 Maegashira #10 East Kinbozan

Kinbozan Haruki | 金峰山 晴樹

Kise | Kazakhstan

Birthdate: June 24, 1997

Height: 192 cm

Weight: 181 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #10 East

Nagoya 2023 Record: 7-8

Kinbozan began to find himself in mid-Maegashira after an awful May, although he still ended Nagoya underwater. Kinbozan is absolutely huge, and even more importantly seems to have a sense of how to use that size. He won't display refined sumo, but he should figure out how to make it work.




29 Maegashira #10 West Endo

Endo Shota | 遠藤 聖大

Oitekaze | Ishikawa

Birthdate: October 19, 1990

Height: 184 cm

Weight: 150 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #16 East

Nagoya 2023 Record: 10-5

Endo was in lower Maegashira and finally looked healthy, so he had a strong basho. He was 8-2 after 10 matches, so perhaps he can't quite go like he used to. That would make Endo, at a minimum, a skillful veteran who has seen most of what any Maegashira can throw at him before.




30 Maegashira #11 East Mitakeumi

Mitakeumi Hisashi | 御嶽海 久司

Dewanoumi | Nagano

Birthdate: December 25, 1992

Height: 179 cm

Weight: 170 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #2 West

Nagoya 2023 Record: 3-12

Mitakeumi once again looked at less than 100% strength during the July basho. Maybe it was the Nagoya heat or maybe it was facing a joi slate, but the former Ozeki had no power during the last basho. Usually, that's a long-term injury problem.'





31 Maegashira #11 West Hokuseiho

Hokuseiho Osamu | 北青鵬 治

Miyagino | Hokkaido

Birthdate: November 12, 2001

Height: 204 cm

Weight: 185 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #6 East

Nagoya 2023 Record: 5-10

Hokuseiho's dreadful 5-10 was the only losing record he's ever had that wasn't due to injury or illness. He is also a 21 year old who did that at Maegashira #6, so he is fine in the long run. Hokuseiho is huge even for a rikishi, but that leads to an upright style he needs to either make dominant or change in the short term.




32 Maegashira #12 East Takarafuji

Takarafuji Daisuke | 宝富士 大輔

Isegahama | Aomori

Birthdate: February 18, 1987

Height: 186 cm

Weight: 171 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #15 West

Nagoya 2023 Record: 9-6

Takarafuji has held himself in lower Maegashira for awhile, and Nagoya was no different. Near the foot of Makuuchi, the solid, redoubtable veteran got himself to 9 wins. The 36 year old now has a cushion before a possible Juryo demotion.





33 Maegashira #12 West Sadanoumi

Sadanoumi Takashi | 佐田の海 貴士

Sakaigawa | Kumamoto

Birthdate: May 11, 1987

Height: 182 cm

Weight: 142 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #8 East

Nagoya 2023 Record: 5-10

Sadanoumi is 36 now, and he may be fading for good finally. His 2023 record is 24-36, and he is sliding down the Banzuke at an increasingly rapid speed. He also had his best year last year, and Sadanoumi's already had a surprising career.





34 Maegashira #13 East Myogiryu

Myogiryu Yasunari | 妙義龍 泰成

Sakaigawa | Hyogo

Birthdate: October 22, 1986

Height: 188 cm

Weight: 156 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #10 West

Nagoya 2023 Record: 6-9

Myogiryu is hanging in, barely. Almost 37, the veteran would seem to be a candidate for retirement as soon as he gets demoted to Juryo. Yet he's survived being in this part of Makuuchi quite a bit over the last few years.





35 Maegashira #13 West Nishikifuji

Nishikifuji Ryusei | 錦富士 隆聖

Isegahama | Aomori

Birthdate: July 22, 1996

Height: 184 cm

Weight: 149 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #8 West

Nagoya 2023 Record: 5-10

Nishikifuji had an extremely rough Nagoya following on from a very bad Natsu basho. He's been in Makuuchi for a year, so he is sorting out how he can handle the top division best. Slightly undersized for a top rikishi, Nishikifuji likes to grapple and doesn't always come out ahead against bigger foes.




36 Maegashira #14 East Aoiyama

Aoiyama Kosuke | 碧山 亘右

Kasugano | Bulgaria

Birthdate: June 19, 1986

Height: 191 cm

Weight: 186 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #17 East

Nagoya 2023 Record: 9-6

Aoiyama was another veteran who held off a demotion to the second division. He isn't likely to put up huge numbers of wins anymore. The Bulgarian Blue Mountain looks the same, a huge presence with lethal two arm thrusts, but he now cannot move sideways at all.




37 Maegashira #14 West Kotoshoho

Kotoshoho Yoshinari | 琴勝峰 吉成

Sadogatake | Chiba

Birthdate: August 26, 1999

Height: 191 cm

Weight: 161 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #13 West

Nagoya 2023 Record: 7-8

Kotoshoho is 24, built extremely well, and a former Sanyaku man with a Jun-Yusho under his belt. Yet he also is mired in lower Maegashira, and he only managed a 7-8 in Nagoya. He can be an excellent rikishi if he can get over his inconsistency and footwork issues.




38 Maegashira #15 East Atamifuji

Atamifuji Sakutaro | 熱海富士 朔太郎

Isegahama | Shizuoka

Birthdate: September 3, 2002

Height: 185 cm

Weight: 176 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Juryo #1 West

Nagoya 2023 Record: 11-4

The big youngster from Isegahama is back in Makuuchi after an awful top division debut last November. Now he is coming off successive 13-2 and an 11-4 Juryo performances, which means he is coming in on a roll. This should be the time in Makuuchi that makes Atamifuji finally stick as a Maegashira.




39 Maegashira #15 West Chiyoshoma

Chiyoshoma Fujio | 千代翔馬 富士雄

Kokonoe | Mongolia

Birthdate: July 20, 1991

Height: 184 cm

Weight: 137 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #12 East

Nagoya 2023 Record: 6-9

Chiyoshoma has struggled over the last few basho as he has also seemed to be using less wild and weird sumo. The henka is a controversial approach, but maybe Chiyoshoma will blast to 10 wins by henka-ing in every match.





40 Maegashira #16 East Kagayaki

Kagayaki Taishi | 輝 大士

Takadagawa | Ishikawa

Birthdate: June 1, 1994

Height: 193 cm

Weight: 156 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Juryo #1 East

Nagoya 2023 Record: 9-6

Kagayaki's stay in the second division was a very brief one. He went 9-6 as the top-ranked Juryo man to make an immediate return to Makuuchi. He isn't a different rikishi, but having ideal size and being fairly competent can keep someone hanging around lower Maegashira.




41 Maegashira #16 West Tsurugisho

Tsurugisho Momotaro | 剣翔 桃太郎

Oitekaze | Tokyo

Birthdate: July 27, 1991

Height: 185 cm

Weight: 194 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #11 West

Nagoya 2023 Record: 5-10

Tsurugisho may be close to yo-yoing between Makuuchi and Juryo again soon. Certainly, if he gets pushed around the way he did in Nagoya, he can't stick around the top division.






42 Maegashira #17 East Daishoho

Daishoho Kiyohiro | 大翔鵬 清洋

Oitekaze | Mongolian

Birthdate: August 28, 1994

Height: 185 cm

Weight: 196 kg

Nagoya 2023 Rank: Maegashira #14 East

Nagoya 2023 Record: 6-9

After over three years in Juryo, Daishoho returned to Makuuchi in March. Now, he's facing the second division once again. It's hard to see him avoiding the drop for very long.

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