View Full Version : It's down to the wire now!

23rd November 2007, 04:14
This year's Kyushu Sumo Basho has been rather exciting, with the yusho up for grabs. As of day #12, Hakuho is tied for first place with Chiyotaikai and Baruto, with a 10-2 record. While Baruto (maegashira #16) hasn't faced top-level opponents, he has certainly been a dominant presence on the dohyo. Chiyotaikai hasn't looked this good in years! :toast: He destroyed Kotomitsuki today. He is my hope for this one but unfortunately, he doesn't seem to have a good track record for the last third of the basho. Still... so far, so good. :D Hakuho has seemed to have lost some of his game, these last few tourneys. Even so, I suspect he will be pulling out all the stops for the next 3 days. Tomorrow's match between Chiyotaikai and Baruto will probably decide the outcome of this Kyushu Grand Sumo Tournament (unless Hakuho loses to Kaio). If Chiyo loses, I'm betting that Hakuho will take it. After all, Kaio doesn't really pose much of a threat to Hakuho, does he? Or maybe so? I guess you can't count out the mighty Kaio, can you? Well, I'm on the edge of my seat, waiting for the next 3 days of action! Any thoughts on the outcome? boy, I can't wait to see Asashoryu back on the dohyo in January. I bet he's itching to re-claim his throne! :redhot:

Hey John McCulloch, How was the action from the 5th row? Are you still in japan? Who is your pick for the winner of the Emperor's Cup? :smilejapa

Later, Jon Palombi

John McCulloch
23rd November 2007, 05:33
Not discouraged by my 0.000 record, my prediction for the outcome of the Kyushu Basho is as follows:

1. Hakuho
2. Baruto
3. Chiyotaikai

The reasons for this are that Hakuho is the healthiest of the three, Baruto is a big awkward fellow but is not technically strong enough to cope with a motivated Hakuho (if he ends up facing him) and Chiyotaikai (much as I like him) has a bad habit of choking.

I was at the Basho on Days 2 and 3 (pretty close to the action on Day 3). All I can say is that it was great! It was very noticeable that the intensity of the tachiai increased significantly with rank. Also, I was right beside the hanamichi and could see the rikishi warming up before entering. My hanamichi report is that Takamisakari and Kokkai were very noisy (lots of kiai before they approached the dohyo) whereas Kaio and Chiyotaikai looked and sounded a bit less genki.

Will post a few pictures once I get organized.

All the best,

John McCulloch

26th November 2007, 04:45
It certainly was an exciting Grand Sumo Basho in Kyushu, this year. While I would have preferred to see Chiyotaikai compete on Day #15 (then we would had had a play-off! :cry: ), all-in-all, it was a descent tournament. For most of us, the Kyushu Basho was finished at the end of Day #14, as Hakuho wasn't likely to lose the next 2 matches in a row. Too bad Chiyo didn't get to face-off against Kaio. That's always a blast to watch! Anyway, just when we thought things were a little predictable, Kotomitsuki defeats Hakuho. Now that was Ozumo! :toast: Come to think of it, Day #15 had quite a few quality matches. Baruto and Tochinonada sure worked up a sweat with their protracted bout. Also, Ama looked like an Ozeki in his final match. Is he next? I can't wait for the return of Yokozuna Asashoryu. How will Asa react to the usurping of his throne by Hakuho? :redhot: Will he be able to re-gain dominance within the Banzuke? Any predictions about the Tokyo Basho in January? What do you think?

How about you, John McCulloch? You seem to be hitting near-the-mark these days. Are you still in Japan? Will you please share some of your ring-side photos with us? Thanks! :smilejapa

Later, Jon Palombi

John McCulloch
27th November 2007, 04:21
Great! I'm now batting .003 for my predictions!

Yes, the final day was exciting although it was sad to see no Chiyotaikai. That was quite a stress he got on his arm from Hakuho and it may slow him down for a basho or two.

Totally agree about Baruto - he really dug deep in his final (lengthy) bout - and Ama too - if he were 10 Kg heavier I think he could be top of the sport.

I'm now back from Japan so at long last here are the Kyushu basho photos (http://picasaweb.google.com/snowsumo/KyushuBashoDays23Nov2007).

I heard Asashoryu will be having a press conference on Nov. 30. It'll be interesting to see what he says and also in what spirit he says it.

Looking forward to January!

Best wishes,

John McCulloch