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  • Fantasy Basho

Nagoya 2023 Day Five



Public League Leaderboard

Scores from Fantasizr.


Yusho Arasoi

5 Wins

09 Maegashira #1 East Nishikigi

21 Maegashira #7 East Takayasu

33 Maegashira #13 East Gonoyama


4 Wins

04 Sekiwake #1 East Hoshoryu

05 Sekiwake #1 West Daieisho

22 Maegashira #7 West Tamawashi

26 Maegashira #9 West Hokutofuji

36 Maegashira #14 West Shonnanoumi

39 Maegashira #16 East Endo


Notable Maneuvers

Okurihikiotoshi. Hoshoryu got hit-and-shifted by Abi, probably had his hair pulled, and had to readjust immediately. All he did was grab Abi's left arm, pull him around, and end up grabbing his mawashi from behind. That resulted in Abi being forced to sit down on the clay for the rather unusual "rear push down."


Match of the Day

13 Maegashira #3 East Midorifuji versus 12 Maegashira #2 West Mitakeumi

We will be remembered for our greatest moments, but we will all be judged by what we do in our lowest moments. Midorifuji and Mitakeumi both came in winless, and they gave it their all in this one. Maybe it wasn't a battle of strength as much as two men struggling to find a way to win. They went on for a long, long time, but with a nervy tension that made it quite feel like a stalemate. In the end, it was Midorifuji who could hang on that little bit longer to eke out the first wins.


Recap

Nishikigi's win streak now stands at 13 matches, stretching back to the May basho. He continued his functional effectiveness on Day Five by dispatching Wakamotoharu with shocking ease. He is locked into each match and expending little effort. Takayasu and Gonoyama also kept pace on Day Five, remaining undefeated as well. Takayasu looks like he is in his best, healthiest form. Gonoyama looks more than ready for Makuuchi in his debut.


That leading trio isn't exactly free and clear. The six rikishi on 4 wins are certainly in the yusho race. Hoshoryu and Daieisho are not only eyeing a yusho, but hoping for Ozeki promotions. They would each likely need 11 wins, but 12 wins would absolutely guarantee it. They need to keep pushing forward each and every day to keep both their Yusho and Promotion chances alive. They also will be among the group who will face any upstart Maegashira who are still in contention in Week Two.


What they won't do is face Nishikigi to knock him back a peg. Nishikigi is the man responsible for Hoshoryu and Daieisho's losses. He has also beaten Yokozuna Terunofuji, now out, and Ozeki Kirishima in a fusen win on Day One when Kirishima was out. On Day Five, he handled Wakamotoharu. On paper, Nishikigi has already had his most difficult matches. In theory, he will get Takayasu and Gonoyama if all three undefeated rikishi keep winning.


To say that Nishikigi shouldn't be doing this is an understatement. He is a 32 year old at his highest ever rank this basho as a Maegashira #1. He spent January 2020 to September 2021 in Juryo, looking like his Makuuchi career was done for much of that. He has never earned more than 10 wins as a Maegashira. His style is to be close, careful, and not beat himself. This is not a man who usually storms to a yusho.


And Nishikigi needs to keep it up for ten days to actually lift the Emperor's Cup. He also needs other men to fall off. Despite his spectacular first five days, Nishikigi has a long road ahead of him. He will not overpower anyone, and someone may be able to overwhelm him. Yet it is Nishikigi who is in the best position to win an Emperor's Cup at this point in the Nagoya Basho.

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