Had a wild and wide-ranging talk with Alastair Himmer of AFP regarding the brouhaha surrounding Hakuho's questioning the video refereeing of his first bout against Kisenosato in the last basho, the one which delayed, but luckily did not interrupt Hakuho's claiming the all-time career basho victory record. (Link)
We can say now that Hakuho should have kept quiet, of course. He did win the rematch, convincingly.
However, what if he had lost the rematch and the loss led to him missing his chance for a 33rd Basho? Denying Hakuho's control of the bout's momentum (Link - J) could have been a stunning blow to the history of the sport. Hakuho has good reason to worry at his age that a climb up into the dohyo might end in an injury cutting short his career, or that the victory of a young upstart (Chiyonofuji v. Takanohana, 1991, May Basho, Day 1: Video - J) might usher him off into inglorious retirement.
Considering how much he has done restore excellence to the sport, it is hard to find fault in his sudden bark of frustration.
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