Thursday, April 29, 2004

Sumo

The banzuke for the Natsu (Summer) tournament, beginning May 9, was released on Monday and is available online. Asashoryu is at the top, of course, as he looks to continue his 30-match winning streak. Chiyotaikai is the top ozeki, followed by Kaio, unchanged from Haru thanks to their identical 13-2 records. Kyokutenho is the West (lower-ranked) sekiwake after his fine performance in March. Asasekiryu jumped to East M-#2 after his stellar 13-2. Mongolian Hakuho, winner of the juryo division in March, makes his makunouchi debut at the tender age of 19 in the East M-#16 position. In other gaikokujin makonouchi news, Kokkai rises to the East M-#7 and and Kyokushuzan falls to West M-#8. Last but by no means least, Bulgarian Kotooshu, winner of the makushita championship in March, makes his juryo debut at East J-#10, which means he now as a profile online. Perhaps the most notable information there is his height, 2.03m (nearly 6'8") and weight, 135kg (297 lbs). These might be fine numbers for an NFL defensive lineman, but he's exceptionally tall and quite light for his height for a sumo wrestler. Take, for example, Asashoryu, who is 184cm/140kg (6'/309 lbs). Akebono was of a similar height, 6'8" per this article, but clocked in at a quite hefty 515 pounds. Kotooshu is still fairly young at 21, so there's time for him to bulk up, but unless he's quite gifted technically, his future is probably somewhat limited.

And that's enough Thursday morning quarterbacking for now. Back to work, and probably no more sumo until the competition begins in a couple weeks.

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