K-On! rebounded from yesterday’s setback as Manabe Nodoka scored an easy victory over Hidamari Sketch’s Yoshinoya in the twelveth day of the First Round of Anime Saimoe Tournament 2010. Yoshinoya’s defeat was Hidamari’s first series loss in the elimination stage. Finishing at third was Sawamura Tomoki from Saki, followed by Angol Mois from Keroro Gunsou.
In the other match, Wilhelmina Carmel from Shakugan no Shana also won her match easily, prevailing over Tsumuhana Isuzu from Ookami Kakushi, Komori Kiri from Sayonara Zetsubou Sensei and Enjutsu from Koihime Musou.
I think these two matches got the fewest vote overall. I don’t blame the voters though, star power was really lacking. But that will change today. Of note is the fact that Nodoka and Wilhelmina styled quite better than I expected. I thought the matches will be closer, but apparently not.
Well, the uneventful fights are out of the way for now, and we finally have the interesting bouts here. First up, Block C boils down to Mika vs. Maria. After seeing Amano Saki’s inspiring performance, Mika might have a chance, as she also powered up by Kugyuu VA mojo. This is an opportunity for schemers, but fret not, Hayate fans, because Maria is really the favorite here. It might actually go down to Maria-Sakuya-Mika as 1-2-3 finishers here. And Maria needs to look good in the upcoming matches ahead. And it’s quite a pity that Sakuya and Kyoujyu (Miyabi) were caught in the middle of this one. But such is the fate of Saimoe participants. “It can’t be helped.” Both my prediction and pick for this match coincide – Maria. Also worth mentioning, Maria lost to eventual winner Taiga last year, so she is stronger than she looks.
And now, for the main event of Block D (at least for the first round matchups :V) – Nozomi takes on Koromo, with Koume on the side. Ah, poor Koume, at least she’ll be having my support here, because this is the last chance for that. Nozomi looked superb in the prelims, but I think Koromo is the default choice here to win. I mean, she styled on fellow 2009 quarterfinalist Saginomiya Isumi in the preliminaries, heck, she styled on the whole group itself. I just don’t see Nozomi taking this one, as Koromo only lost to eventual finalist Hirasawa Yui herself last year. So yeah, Koromo is my prediction, with Koume as my pick. Yes, I love the Koromo too and seeing that these two characters are in my top ten and that they have to go against each other this early makes me summon all my rage, and eventual despair incoming. Koromo better not lose here, else, double KO for me.
So finally, these two matches are entertaining ones to follow, with 7 of 8 qualifying via the first prelims (and Akari barely making the cut). This is just the appetizer in what some of the 2ch’ers dub as the “climax” of the 1st round. I’ll talk more into this tomorrow, but you know that Uiharu vs. Hisa vs. Izumi is going to be a baller.