Former top division rikishi Chiyonokuni won his second Makushita championship with a 7 and 0 record on day 13, and hopefully we will see him return to salaried status soon.
In Juryo, it is possible for any one of these 8 men to win the title, but most likely it will come down to one of the 10 and 4 leaders, Kyokutaisei or Mitoryu.
And in one of the most exciting top division title races in recent memory, we have Terunofuji as sole leader at 12 and 2 going into the final day. He has stablemate Terutsuyoshi to thank for keeping him in the lead by defeating Asanoyama on day 14.
The former Ozeki will be facing off against Mitakeumi at 11-3 on day 15. If Terunofuji wins this match, he will leave with the Emperor’s Cup. If Mitakeumi wins, it will force a 3 way playoff between Terunofuji, Mitakeumi, and the winner of Shodai vs. Asanoyama.
Terunofuji, who prefers fighting with a right hand inside grip on the belt has the slight edge on the shorter Mitakeumi, fighting him six times and winning in their last four matches. Mitakeumi is versatile though, and he may just be quick enough to win without engaging in a belt battle with the giant.
Asanoyama is slightly larger than Shodai, but both wrestlers prefer migi-yotsu and are tied at 3 and 3 based on past meetings.
Asanoyama is looking for his 2nd top division yusho, as is Terunofuji. And it would be Mitakeumi’s 3rd if he won. Shodai should not be counted out though if it comes down to a playoff. He’s been in the position to claim the title more than once before, and if given the chance he may take it this time. He has beaten Terunofuji and Mitakeumi already this basho after all.
We’ll find out soon either way! See you on Senshuraku!