A Japanese sumo wrestler has not won the tournament since 2006. Seriously?
I guess we had the era of Asashoryu, and now it's Hakuhou, both of them Mongolian sumo wonders.
During January's basho, a Japanese wrestler, Kisenosato, was promoted to Ozeki (champ, the rank just below Yokozuna, which is Grand Champion, the highest rank in sumo.) For a while NO Japanese occupied the top two ranks!
In September after the basho in Tokyo, Kotoshogiku (another Japanese) was promoted to Ozeki, but before that, it was all foreigners.
The year 2011 was a rocky one for sumo and some fans lost their fire for the sport after a bout-fixing scandal. And there was the baseball scandal. And that came after the brutal 2007 beating of the Japanese recruit that resulted in his death.
Sumo needs to shape up! Shape up for the fans! Maybe with some fresh, native blood in the top ranks there will be an increased interest in the show. I hope so~