With Hakuho out and Kakuryu retired, Terunofuji will go into every fight over the next basho or two as the favorite and has a genuine shot at a future promotion to yokozuna.
For John Gunning's latest contributions to The Japan Times, see below:
The ranking sheets, which have been produced since the 18th century, serve not only as keepsakes but as snapshots of the sport's changes over time.
Should the Japan Sumo Association adopt the recommendations of the external advisors, the all-time great yokozuna would be prevented from using his ring name after retiring.
With age and momentum on his side, the burly ozeki has what it takes to add to his two Emperor's Cup titles over the next several years.
The former rikishi's caricaturish style, a longtime fixture of sumo merchandise and media, is widely considered a definitive representation of the sport.
The Mongolian, who just two years ago was fighting in sumo's second-lowest division, is now being hyped as the next potential yokozuna after his Spring Basho triumph.
Kakuryu’s nature never allowed him to play the black hat role, and his style of sumo, and gradual ascent to the top, also meant that he flew under the radar for many.
Established in 1986 by former sekiwake Takamiyama, Azumazeki was the first heya in history to be run by a foreign-born stablemaster.
The tournament, which was relocated from Osaka to Tokyo to reduce the risk of COVID-19 infections, will be the first to feature a yokozuna since July.
With the release of the banzuke (rankings) for the upcoming spring meet, yokozuna Hakuho becomes just the second man in sumo history to reach 100 tournaments in the top division. Surpassing ozeki Kaio’s record 107 tournaments in makuuchi would require staying active for another 12 ...