Terunofuji’s absence aside, professional sumo has just produced the most encouraging start to a tournament in several years.

The opening three days of action at the Fukuoka International Center has seen the six highest-ranked wrestlers that are taking part go a combined 17-1.

In fact, Wakamotoharu’s defeat to Takayasu on Sunday was the only loss suffered by anyone at the rank of ozeki or sekiwake through Tuesday.