- Fantasy Basho
Kyushu 2022 Day Five
05 Sekiwake #1 West Hoshoryu
06 Sekiwake #2 West Mitakeumi
11 Maegashira #1 East Takayasu
20 Maegashira #5 West Nishikifuji
28 Maegashira #9 West Abi
31 Maegashira #11 East Onosho
36 Maegashira #13 West Oho
37 Maegashira #14 East Ichiyamamoto
Public League Leaderboard
Scores from Fantasizr.
Kawazugake. Hoshoryu got his forth win with a "hooking backward counter throw." Basically, Midorifuji had a pretty good leg trip in process, Hoshoryu wrapped his leg tighter, and Midorifuji went backwards harder and hit the dohyo a second before Hoshoryu.
Match of the Day
Maegashira #12 East Kotoeko versus Maegashira #13 West Oho
Oho looked for a moment like he would overpower the smaller man. Then Kotoeko did his thing and just kept disrupting Oho's sumo. The Sadogatake man just plowed into him, which seemed to make Oho only go backwards. But the young man had plenty of fight left. In fact, he stood his ground and made sure to win with a decisive throw.
Eight rikishi stand at 4-1, which means they share the lead after one-third of the basho. The yusho race still has plenty, but it's probably fair to say it is anyone's cup for the taking. Hoshoryu and Mitakeumi will eventually have to square off. Meanwhile, fellow 4-1 rikishi Maegashira #1 East Takayasu has already handed Hoshoryu his one loss and gets Mitakeumi on Day Five. This will obviously thin the leaderboard.
That is the real takeaway for Day Five. The leaders still seem to be the leaders for now. The men on top of the yusho race aren't exactly showing they'll run over everyone. Abi may make some noise amongst lower Maegashira, although Onosho, Oho, and Ichiyamamoto also have a claim for being the big winner in the lower half of the banzuke. Whoever does stand out will then get to face the top-ranked men still in the race. That's the way a sumo tournament works.
3-2 rikishi are as much in the thick of the race as the 4-1 rikishi. No one should be happy to face Takakeisho or Wakatakakage right now. They aren't performing at their very best, but they are difficult opponents with yusho experience. Other Sanyaku men are there for a reason, and even 1-4 Tamawashi is a strong veteran who won the last yusho. This is still a fairly even tournament.
That does mean a win streak, even a four or five match win streak, will make a difference over the next week. This is especially true for those with 4 or 3 wins, but is true everywhere. Hoshoryu, for example, is at 4-1 with some amazing escapes. He could put some excellent sumo together and keep up this pace. Or just as likely the amazing escapes get harder to pull off and his luck runs out. This same theoretical example could apply to almost everyone in this basho.
The wisest move may be to avoid all predictions. No one looks like a guaranteed winner on any day, and maybe only Takarafuji looks hopeless. Even he could win, though, because he is a wily veteran who knows what to do out there although his body seems to be betraying him. If that's the outlook for any single day, then know that we still have a range of possibilities for the next ten.