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  • Fantasy Basho

Haru 2024 Day Twelve




Public League Leaderboard

Scores from Fantasizr.



Yusho Arasoi

11 Wins

42 Maegashira #17 East Takerufuji


9 Wins

03 Ozeki #1 West Hoshoryu

05 Ozeki #2 West Kotonowaka

19 Maegashira #5 West Onosato

21 Maegashira #6 West Gonoyama


Notable Maneuvers

Kotenage. There were two big ones (see below,) but Kotonowaka's arm-lock throw happened because he went for Onosato's right side at the tachiai and could easily grab a hold of Onosato's arm.


Match of the Day

42 Maegashira #17 East Takerufuji versus 03 Ozeki #1 West Hoshoryu

Takerufuji did his thing and went right after Hoshoryu. Hoshoryu did a hit-and-shift that Takerufuji didn't read at all. Largely, that was because Hoshoryu was so quick to get to the Isegahama man's side. The Ozeki went for the mawashi, couldn't reach it, and grabbed Takerufuji's left arm for the kotenage.


Recap

Takerufuji took his first loss, removing the very slim chance of a zensho yusho. It also was his first loss as a Maegashira. That doesn't mean Takerufuji isn't still the clear leader in the yusho race, either. He has a two-loss lead on anyone else, and losing to Ozeki isn't exactly a sign of weakness. Hoshoryu demonstrated it's possible for someone to get to Takerufuji's side. It will help for someone to be as skilled and quick as Hoshoryu to do it.


As big as Hoshoryu's defeat of Takerufuji was Kotonowaka's takedown of Onosato. Much like Takerufuji, Onosato still needs to work on Plan B's. The Plan A has been exceptionally good, so recovery has been less easy to practice when it matters. Yet Onosato couldn't do much with Kotonowaka to his right side while he was charging forward. His loss is what provides Takerufuji a larger cushion in the yusho race. Onosato now sits at 9-3 with Hoshoryu, Kotonowaka, and Gonoyama.


For any of that quartet to have a chance at lifting the Emperor's Cup, they need Takerufuji to drop at least two more matches. He could do that, since he has never been in a battle for the cup and sumo tends to wild outcomes. Yet it also is hard to say how he would lose two more matches with the way he has performed. Also, the only rikishi in contention who could give him a loss is Gonoyama, since he's already faced Onosato, Kotonowaka, and Hoshoryu.


We should consider Gonoyama, even if he is probably the least likely yusho candidate among the contenders. He was a model for Takerufuji, as a university sumo man who took Makuuchi by storm. Takerufuji's epic start to this basho put Gonoyama in his shadow, but Gonoyama is a man trying to bust into Sanyaku. He'll get the chance to show he can handle the named ranks in his last few days. He has not seen any of his fellow contenders, except Onosato. Onosato dropped him to 0-2, after which Gonoyama went on a hot streak (with two fusen wins) to get here.


Over the next three days, Takerufuji's matches will be the ones to watch. He faces Wakamotoharu on Day Thirteen. Wakamotoharu demonstrated how dangerous he can be by taking Takakeisho straight back. He may also get the other Sekiwake, Daieisho, although he's been performing poorly. Onosato will get Daieisho on Day Thirteen. Gonoyama gets the tough matchup with Hoshoryu. Kotonowaka gets an all Ozeki battle with Takakeisho. We need to see how all of those matches go before we can forecast anymore.

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