Kyushu 2021 Day Twelve
Technically speaking, they said Sadanoumi beat Tochinoshin by amiuchi, the fisherman's throw. It's a throw that turns around the opponent and resembles casting a fishing net, but really Sadanoumi got the Big Georgian going sideways in an unrecoverable fashion.
Match of the Day
Maegashira #5 East Takayasu versus Ozeki West Takakeisho
This one got wild. Takayasu tried to go inside for a grip on Takakeisho's mawashi, but Takakeisho blew him up. That is a polite way to describe the fact that both hit each other in the face. Then they continued having a slapfest, which would always favor the Ozeki. Takakeisho emphasized the point by making sure Takayasu went off the dohyo.
Terunofuji and Takakeisho both won on Day Twelve, keeping the upsets off the top of the leaderboard. Neither had a simple match. Takakeisho needed to fend off getting hit in the face a few times, and Terunofuji was in a poor position against a game Meisei. Takakeisho pushed Takayasu off, and Terunofuji tossed around Meisei anyway. Abi also won over Tamawashi, directing his oshi-zumo at Tamawashi's chest and sending out the veteran. The top three spots in the yusho arasoi remain the same.
Elsewhere, there was consequential action everywhere. Kiribayama, Onosho, Takarafuji, and Tochinoshin all lost to seal their make-koshi. Sadanoumi, Takanosho, and Shodai all secured an eighth win and a winning record. That's big for all three. Sadanoumi will stay in Makuuchi for January, and Takanosho is in prime position to get bumped to the Sanyaku ranks. Shodai will be an Ozeki for at least two more basho, and he could do more over the final three days.
Mitakeumi, Tamawashi, and Hokutofuji losing also has ramifications. They all could have gone to 10 wins, but didn't make it on Day Twelve. Those men are almost mathematically eliminated from yusho contention. They would need to win out, while Terunofuji loses out and Takakeisho and Abi both go 1-2 or worse. For Hokutofuji and Tamawashi, it was a loss to other strong performers in the Maegashira ranks. For Mitakeumi, it was an upset from Endo.
Mitakeumi probably lost any hope of kicking off an Ozeki run with this tournament, and he gets the undefeated Yokozuna on Day Thirteen. Sekiwake-dom is once again his lot. He is just firmly the fourth or fifth best rikishi right now. He also might not see the whole of the top three over the rest of the tournament. He won't need to if he loses to Terunofuji, as he will also lose any shot at a yusho or jun-yusho.
The man with the most control over his basho might be Abi. Abi squares off with Takakeisho on Day Thirteen, in a battle of one-loss rikishi. Expect a furious shoving match between these two grapplers, especially as Takakeisho is aiming for Yokozuna if he can get a yusho. Abi is playing with house money in his return basho after being suspended. He likely has a special prize or two secured, unless the Sumo Association is still peeved about his actions in July 2020. He could go wild and pull the upset against the Ozeki, making the final weekend an exciting affair.