- Fantasy Basho
Natsu 2022 Day Two
Public League Leaderboard
Kotenage. The Yokozuna won his first match with an arm lock throw, despite not being able to really push Takayasu back. Even if he isn't 100%, Terunofuji has that specific kind of strength.
Match of the Day
Maegashira #2 East Kiribayama versus Ozeki #2 West Takakeisho
What Kiribayama wanted for this match was a grappling battle, and he got it after a few slapping exchanges. The problem for Kiribayama is that he never grabbed Takakeisho's mawashi, but was wrestling with the arms. Despite that, Takakeisho actually managed to take a solid grip and flip the Maegashira around. It wasn't textbook Yotsu-zumo, but it got the Ozeki a crucial first win.
The highest ranked rikishi with no losses is Kotonowaka. Kotonowaka is ranked Maegashira #2 West. It is also only Day Two. That is exactly how crazy Natsu has been just through the first Monday. After a wave of upsets on Day One, most rikishi had their fortunes reversed. Terunofuji, Takakeisho, Abi, and Hoshoryu came back from opening losses for a victory. Mitakeumi, Wakatakakage, and Daieisho were upset in their second match.
That marks out the Shodai-Kotonowaka clash. It wasn't an outstanding match, as they both stalled out at the tachiai and had weird grips. They began exchanging holds, and Shodai got the front of Kotonowaka's mawashi. That sent Kotonowaka backwards, and he did a wonderful dance at the tawara to win as Shodai went over. No mono-ii, and Kotonowaka got the win. He also took a spot on the top of the leaderboard with seven others.
A yusho arasoi on Day Two is ridiculous, and always overcrowded. The reason it's worth looking at now is that no Sanyaku wrestlers are currently undefeated. Yet the only one sitting at 0-2 is Shodai. While two days doesn't make a trend, that should let us know this basho could be a bloodbath. Kotonowaka will try and make it three for three against Ozeki when he faces Mitakeumi on Day Three. If he wins, which is still a huge if, he will be in control of the basho. Everyone else needs to scrap.
Terunofuji's knees still seem to be bothering him in a problematic way. Mitakeumi got reversed by Hoshoryu surprisingly easily on Day Two. Shodai is winless. Takakeisho does not have his usual power. Wakatakakage and Abi both got overwhelmed by the ageless wonder Tamawashi, which isn't a sign of nimbleness. The Komusubi look like Komusubi who are facing a very odd and very tough schedule. The usual favorites, the men who have special named ranks, are not looking like world beaters two days in.
There are still thirteen days left. Someone could take charge and start beating all comers. If it's by Kotonowaka keeping it up (he is probably getting Terunofuji in the next few days), then Kotonowaka will be making his ascent into a Sanyaku regular. Likely, everyone will keep beating everyone else. Zensho yusho are rare for one very good reason, which is that being in control for every match is extremely difficult.