View Full Version : Grand Sumo Basho is smokin' in Osaka!

16th March 2008, 02:34
Hey Folks,
There is definitely quite a bit of excitement building at the Osaka Tourney, this year! There have been plenty of excellent matches, thus far. You've really got to hand it to the youngsters, Homasho and Tochiozan, for their outstanding performances. While it is unlikely that 7-0 Homasho and 7-0 Tochiozan, will be able to keep winning against the higher ranked rikishi (as this basho draws closer to the finish line), Yokozuna Asashoryu is looking like the probable victor at 7-0. Or is he? Chiyotaikai is fighting nearly as good as he was in November :redhot: and Hakuho is never to be underestimated. :nono: After Yokozuna Hakuho's fine showing last January, anything could happen. It's probably too soon to say, so, stay tuned people!
Hey John McCullock,
What do you say? You were predicting Asa, last time out. What are your thoughts? Are there any particular matches that have impressed you, this go around? Will there be another fabulous playoff on day # 15? Who do you think will walk away with the Emperor's Cup? While the odds are he will be Mongolian, we still have 8 days left to observe, just which Mongolian.

Be well and practice often, Jon Palombi :smilejapa

John McCulloch
21st March 2008, 05:38
Hi Jon,

What a surprise - not one but two (count 'em) yokozuna losses on Day 12!

See the footage here:

Hakuho vs Chiyotaikai (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hi0Yt06xAfg)

Asashoryu vs Kotoshogiku (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sbuwt6LtBuo)

In terms of predictions it looks like it's too close to call. I'd give Asashoryu a slight edge since he's one ahead with only three days to go and he's been very strong this time until today, BUT he still has to face Hakuho.

It'll be interesting to see if the big lad Baruto (2 losses) will face the yokozuna or not - that could make things very exciting.

Great basho!

John McCulloch

21st March 2008, 13:25
Well, after day #13 action, it seems like both Yokozunas have a 10-2 record! Ozeki Kotomitsuki beat Yokozuna Asashoryu, to level the playing field. Both Tochiozan and Baruto lost, as well, perhaps missing the chance for a 4-way play off? Too bad! Even so, you have to applaud the youngsters. As long as both Yokozunas win on day #14, we will be treated to another day #15 play off for the yusho. I think I'm liking this Mongolian Yokozuna rivalry quite a bit. :toast:

Hey John,
My money is on Asashoryu too. He certainly has more on the line. :redhot: He must be wild over yesterday's defeat! Still, Hakuho sure is skillful. You just can't count him out of the title race. I guess we will have to wait for the final match on day #15? Excellent!

Later, Jon Palombi :smilejapa

22nd March 2008, 03:35
Well, after day #13 action, it seems like both Yokozunas have an 11-2 record!

Never post a reply befor your second cup of coffee. :eek:

Later Guys, Jon

John McCulloch
22nd March 2008, 03:46
My two cents worth is that the two late losses in a row for Asashoryu may signal that he's effectively out of the yusho race.

No doubt he has the skill and strength to win but I can't help but wonder what the effect of the last two losses PLUS his failure to win the January basho PLUS his 2007 suspension is having on him. I suspect he's lost his confidence.

Having said that, I really have no idea who's going to win so I'm just going to enjoy the remaining two days. :)

Kokkai gambare! :D

John McCulloch

23rd March 2008, 02:48
As of day #14, both Yokozunas are now 12-2. Asa handled Kaio ruggedly and Hakuho bested Ozeki Kotomitsuki with technical brilliance. Which translates into a play off between the two Mongolian Yokozunas. Next in line are Estonian rikishi Baruto (How I wish Chiyotaikai was 25, again)and Kokkai at 11-3, with no way to vie for the Emperor's Cup. Tochiozan is 10-4, so his hopes of challenging for the yusho are finished for this basho. Fantastic performances by each of them, though. :D My guess is they will split the kanto-sho, gino-sho and shukun-sho prizes amongst themselves.
So, which Yokozuna will it be, Asashoryu or Hakuho? In fives hours, the battle begins! Who ever wins this tournament, one thing is for sure. A new rivalry between two powerful Yokozuna is tremendously exciting and selling out stadiums. After all, styles make fights. I can hardly wait to see day #15. It looks like a barn-burner in Osaka, 2008. May the best man win! :toast:

See you around the Dohyo, Jon Palombi :smilejapa

Hey John McCulloch,
We all look forward to your follow-up and final thoughts on this 2008 Haru Basho in Osaka. Thanks for posting the videos!

John McCulloch
23rd March 2008, 04:00
Very exciting indeed.

It's impossible to predict who will win - it's a combination of who has the best tachiai and who wakes up in the best spirit (or has the better breakfast :laugh:).

Personally, I'd like to see the two yokozuna bash heads, fall to the dohyo at exactly the same time and force a play-off between the "Estonian Friendly Giant" Baruto and the "Georgian Scowler" Kokkai (who will of course win). :D

This has a wonderful year for sumo so far.

Take care Jon!

John McCulloch

23rd March 2008, 19:36
The winner of the Haru Grand Sumo Basho in Osaka is... Yokozuna Asashoryu! He dominated fellow Mongolian Yokozuna Hakuho, on day #15, to capture the yusho. He was on fire today! :redhot: This rivalry will no doubt lead to an epic series of matches for years to come. Stay tuned for their next clash at the Tokyo Basho in May. Assuming Asa doesn't do anything to violate his standing with the Sumo Kyokai. :eek: However, let's keep a good thought.

Be well and practice often, Jon Palombi :smilejapa

23rd March 2008, 23:47
Hmmmm.... something must have gone wrong with my uploading of the attachments. :smilejapa It must have been something I did wrong. Here are the rest of the pictures.

Ciao, Jon

Hey John McCulloch,
Your final impressions of the 2008 Haru Sumo Basho in Osaka?

P Goldsbury
24th March 2008, 04:22
I have just returned from Osaka, where I was present at Senshuraku. I sat about 30 metres away from the ring in a box seat, directly in front of the shoumen, with lunch and booze provided. You should have seen the cushions raining down when Asashoryu beat Hakuho. I have watched sumo on television often enough, but it's nothing like being there in person, especially at senshuraku. I gather that it is 13 years since there was a play-off between two yokozuna with equal records.

John McCulloch
24th March 2008, 04:27
Here is footage of all Asashoryu's bouts over the 15 days of the spring basho - click here (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xynNfe9ORU4)

I'd be interested to hear the impressions of judo, aikido, Shorinji Kempo and MMA folks on this footage.

This was a wonderful basho - high drama, great technique, the resurgence of several rikishi (Homasho, Baruto, Kokkai, Kotoshugiku) and no serious injuries.

Both yokozuna had a good basho but the ozeki group were mixed. Old hands Kaio and Chiyotaikai performed respectably, Kotomitsuki had his upset over Asashoryu but was very hot and cold otherwise, and Kotooshu looked listless (he blamed a bicep problem after pulling out).

Looking forward to May, I'm curious to see...

1. How the Hakuho vs. Asashoryu rivalry develops.
2. How Baruto and Kokkai will fare at higher ranks.
3. The continued development of Kotoshogiku and Kisenosato.
4. Whether Kotooshu can maintain his ozeki rank.

Can't wait till Tokyo, May 11th!

Best wishes,

John McCulloch