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SUMO: 2019 Hatsu Basho—Day 11

We’ve finished two-thirds of the Hatsu Basho, and find ourselves in a very familiar position. Yokozuna Hakuho is the leader with a perfect 10–0 record. Less usual is the fact that even his closest competitors already have two losses, giving the yokozuna a cushion that he shows no sign of needing. Tied for second-place right […]

SUMO: 2019 Hatsu Basho—Day 10

We’ve reached Day 10 of the Hatsu Basho and yokozuna Hakuho is still undefeated, and thus still alone atop the leaderboard. In fact, he’s gained an even greater advantage because two of his immediate competitors lost yesterday leaving just M15 Chiyonokuni in second place with an 8–1 record. Hakuho continues to look a little stronger […]

SUMO: 2019 Hatsu Basho—Day 9

And so we move into Week 2 of the Hatsu Basho. Yokozuna Hakuho remains alone atop the leaderboard, having secured his eighth win yesterday. Three rikishi are one win off the pace with 7–1 records—M8 Kaisei, M13 Yago, and M15 Chiyonokuni. It was touching to see the Emperor and Empress yesterday, particularly knowing that it […]

SUMO: 2019 Hatsu Basho Nakabi [Middle Day]—Day 8

Here we are, halfway through the Hatsu Basho, and sitting alone atop the leaderboard once again is yokozuna Hakuho with a perfect 7–0 record. Immediately behind him with just one loss are M6 Onosho, M8 Kaisei, M13 Yago, and M15 Chiyonokuni. Today is a big day at the Kokugikan [National Sports Arena] as the Emperor […]

SUMO: 2019 Hatsu Basho—Day 7

We’ve reached the middle weekend of the Hatsu Basho and just like that the leaderboard has just a pair of names sitting alone at the top. Yokozuna Hakuho and M6 Onosho are the only remaining undefeated rikishi. Trailing them with 5–1 records are komusubi Mitakeumi, M5 Aoiyama, M8 Kaisei, M13 Yago, and M15 Chiyonokuni. NOW […]

SUMO: 2019 Hatsu Basho—Day 6

It’s Day 6 of the Hatsu Basho and as we head into the middle weekend we finally have something of a leaderboard forming. Four rikishi remain undefeated—yokozuna Hakuho, komusubi Mitakeumi, M6 Onosho, and M8 Kaisei. A half-dozen rikishi are immediately trailing them with 4–1 records—sekiwake Takakeisho, M1 Ichinojo, M2 Nishikigi, M5 Aoiyama, M13 Yago, M15 […]

SUMO: 2019 Hatsu Basho—Day 5

It’s Day 5 of the Hatsu Basho, and while the whole sumo world is still buzzing about the announcement of Kisenosato’s retirement, the tournament rolls on. The two remaining yokozuna won their matches yesterday, but the ozeki continue to struggle. For the second day in a row, yokozuna Hakuho had a tough time of it. […]

SUMO: Kisenosato Resigns

It’s always big news in sumo when a yokozuna finally decides that it’s time to retire, but today’s news that Kisenosato is withdrawing from the Hatsu Basho and hanging up his mawashi permanently is an extra-big story. If you just started watching sumo in the last two years, you could be forgiven for underestimating Kisenosato, […]

SUMO: 2019 Hatsu Basho—Day 4

Holy cats! What kind of topsy-turvy tournament are seeing?! It’s Day 4 of the Hatsu Basho and the three yokozuna are collectively 4–5 while the three ozeki are 1–8! That’s a combined total of 5–13 for the “champion” class rikishi! What is going on here?! Of the bunch, ONLY yokozuna Hakuho won on Day 3, […]

SUMO: 2019 Hatsu Basho—Day 3

It’s Day 3 of the Hatsu Basho and chaos reigns at the top of the banzuke [ranking sheet]. Two ozeki and one yokozuna remain WINLESS in their first two matches. And only yokozuna Hakuho is undefeated among the top-rankers—and he had quite a scare on Tuesday. Hakuho may have beaten M1 Tochiozan yesterday, but it […]