Saki reaches its penultimate episode with qualifying for both the individual and national team tournaments complete, which leaves us with a bit of a mahjong shortfall to fill those final two episodes... At least it looks that way until the Ryuumonbuchi mahjong club receives a letter. "Dear Ryuumonbuchi High School mahjong club" it reads, "we appear to have run out of things to show in this series, so would you be interested in joining us on a fillerific adventure to at least make the final episode a little more interesting? Yours faithfully, Gonzo. P.S. Please bring money, we're a bit short this month".
Of course not! Instead, the letter in question was one extended to a number of schools by Hisa, in an attempt to give Kiyosumi some tough opponents for a forthcoming training camp that she's preparing in lieu of the forthcoming nationals. Needless to say, the three schools in question all agree to participate for their own varying reasons, which I suppose means that the content of the final episode is now well and truly sealed (although it sounds like the kind of plot that could have extended over several episodes in all honesty).
That still leaves the remainder of this particular instalment however, which is taken up by two things. Firstly, there's Yuuki, who has managed to fail one of her end of term exams and thus needs to swat up for a resit which, if she fails, would mean her missing out on the camp (which of course if no good for anyone on the team at all); thus, Saki and Nodoka both do their bit to help her through, although arguably without much success. Secondly, there's a summer festival going on (you didn't think you were going to get away with a filler episode without one, did you?), so of course there's the prospect of some of the girls in yukatas to look forward to as well.
What more can I say about this episode? It's pure and utter filler, but after all the great mahjong-centric episodes I've enjoyed via this show I suppose I can forgive it that, and I'm actually looking forward to the training camp finale which promises to be pretty interesting in its own right. Roll on next week then, although I'm seriously going to miss this series once it's finished no matter how well placed it appears to be for a second season at some point.