Haru 2019 Banzuke Release!
The Banzuke for the Haru basho has been released. That means we are just two weeks away from the start of the tournament. More importantly, we can analyze how the Banzuke might affect a rikiski's performance.
With only 9 Sanyaku members, the joi-jin technically goes down to the Maegashira 4 East spot, so everyone from Tochiozan up will be facing each other, in theory. Considering possible injuries and other scheduling weirdness, Maegashira 4 West Ichinojo, Maegashira 5 East Chiyotairyu, and Maegashira 5 West Onosho might also be seeing Yokozuna, Ozeki, Sekiwake, or Komusubi on their dance card.
Coming up from Juryo for Haru is Tomokaze at Maegashira 13 East, Terutuyoshi at Maegashira 14 East, Toyonoshima at Maegashira 14 West, Maegashira 15 East Ishiura, and Maegashira 16 East Daishoho. There are five promotions, because both Kisenosato and Takanoiwa have retired, and Kotoyuki, Daiamami, and Daishomaru were relegated.
Good Banzuke luck hit Asanoyama, who only went up one rank to Maegashira 8 East after an 8-7, and gets a similar slate; Abi, who did not jump up to the joi-jin by only going to Maegashira 6 West; and Chiyoshoma, who is still in Makuuchi, somehow.
Bad Banzuke luck for Kaisei and Endo, who received the dreaded Maegashira 1 slots; Shodai, whose Maegashira 3 East might as well be a Maegashira 1, and Ichinojo, whose poor performance didn't let him slide down enough to guarantee facing easier competition on the whole.
The Power Rankings will be out tomorrow. A full Rikishi-by-Rikishi Preview is coming on Wednesday. Keep watching right here for all updates.
The full Banzuke is listed below.
The official Japan Sumo Association is here: http://www.sumo.or.jp/EnHonbashoBanzuke/index/