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Sumo Association releases Natsu Basho banzuke

The Sumo Association released its banzuke rankings for the upcoming Natsu basho this morning with few major changes. Yokozuna Hakuho sits in the prestigious East Yokozuna slot for the eighth basho in a row with no other shuffling among the Yokozuna and Ozeki ranks. With the yusho at the May tournament, Hakuho would become the first rikishi in history to post his second 7-basho yusho streak. Terunofuji (pictured at right) maintains his East Sekiwake slot as he looks to establish a run to the Ozeki rank, and the Mongolian is joined by Myogiryu to the West. The Komusubi ranks are shored up by Tochiohzan in the East and Ichinojo to the West. Ichinojo becomes the second rikishi in history to be touted as a "Shin-Komusubi" after previously obtaining the Sekiwake rank following in the footsteps of Kotomitsuki who found himself in the same circumstance 14 years ago. Two rikishi make their return to the division in Fujiazuma and Takanoiwa, and for the third basho in a row, there are no newcomers to the division.  The 2015 Natsu basho marks the seventh basho in a row now without a Japanese rikishi making a debut in the rank for the first time.





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