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  • Fantasy Basho

Natsu 2024 Day Thirteen




Public League Leaderboard

Scores from Fantasizr.


Yusho Arasoi

10 Wins

03 Ozeki #1 West Kotozakura

09 Komusubi West Onosato


9 Wins

02 Ozeki #1 East Hoshoryu

07 Sekiwake West Abi

11 Maegashira #1 West Daieisho

28 Maegashira #10 East Shonannoumi

37 Maegashira #14 West Oshoma


Notable Maneuvers

Henka. Early in the Makuuchi schedule, Roga did the kind of blatant and wildly successful sidestep that makes highlight reels of henkas. Then in the penultimate (and most important on paper) match of the day, Kotozakura went slightly sideways at the tachiai to make co-leader Shonannoumi get slapped down more easily than he should have.


Match of the Day

19 Maegashira #5 West Meisei versus 07 Sekiwake West Abi

In a battle to stay in the yusho race, Meisei took it right to Abi. This then looked like one of those matches where Abi has nothing going and will get roasted. Of course, Abi is more than a pure pusher because he can dance at the tawara as well as anyone. Indeed, today he fully withstood a yorikiri attempt and moved the match sideways. In that process, he grabbed the back of Meisei's mawashi. Meisei still looked like he would get the better of the throw attempt, but Abi once again balanced better and sent Meisei down sideways.


Recap

Kotozakura and Onosato are setup to have a collision course in a playoff after Day Fifteen's regulation matches. Since each man won, and Kotozakura gave Shonannoumi a loss after Oshoma fell to Wakamotoharu, they are the co-leaders at 10 wins. They faced each other on Day Six, with Kotozakura winning. All Kotozakura and Onosato have to do to guarantee a playoff spot is win their last two matches.


That is much easier said than done. They both look fairly good. Onosato, in particular, had one of his best matches on Day Thirteen. He read Ura's attempt to go for the legs, and he just absolutely knocked him back for an easy win. Kotozakura did a kinda-sorta-henka to beat Shonannoumi, but it's also fair to say he read his opponents just as well as Onosato. These are men who are fighting their best for this basho. They still need to keep that up for two more matches to get that playoff chance.


Kotozakura will see Abi on Day Fourteen, who is at 9-6 after his turnaround against Meisei. The Ozeki is favored, but Abi is always dangerous and can be in a very strange 11 win playoff possibility by winning that match. Another wrestler who could be there is Hoshoryu, who manhandled Midorifuji in his Day Thirteen matchup. He needs to beat fellow 9-4 man Oshoma, but win or lose he will be the man with a chance to knock back Kotozakura in the musubi no ichiban on the final day.


That would make Onosato have the slightly easier path for the Yusho. He gets Shonannoumi on Day Fourteen, who has not handled his escalation in strength of schedule over the last few days. Before that, though, he was the sole leader and was fighting extremely well. The most obvious opponent Onosato has not seen yet for Day Fifteen is Abi. Onosato won their matchup in March by hatakikomi, but that doesn't mean he is a lock to repeat that feat in May. Onosato is a strikingly talented rikishi who seems to be on a when-not-if trajectory to a Yusho and Ozeki promotion at some point. He also still occasionally looks like a guy who can be surprised by talented opponents.


Kotozakura and Onosato have the inside track for a playoff at 12 wins. But Abi and Hoshoryu will get the chance to make their own places in an unreal 11-win playoff. Daieisho also has a chance for that scenario with two wins and luck, while Shonannoumi and Oshoma also have the theoretical ability to get there. Despite the playoff scenarios and potential upsets, the basho could be simple. Kotozakura and Onosato just have to keep winning their next matches, and they'll lift their first Emperor's Cup.

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