I don't see how it could ever be argued that kenichi is meant to defeat a master here unless there is a 10 year timeskip at some point in the future. I mean, the master class is something altogether different from what kenichi can even conceive so far or at least it would seem that way. Kenichi has never actually fought important battles for that matter. He has fought a bunch of school bullies (irrelevant), he has fought ryuto (irrelevant), he has fought sho (irrelevant), he beat boris(irrelevant), he beat koukin (irrelevant), he beat ethan (irrelevant), and he has defeated a number of other people out of which the direct result has merely been a scratch to the pride of his enemies.
When kenichi fought boris what was actually relevant was whether akisame won against gaidar, not the other way around. Gaidar was the big time criminal who was an important cog in the yami machine. It was agaard who was a master and a member of the OSNF. It was diego who was planning to murder a bunch of big time folk at the cruise. Each and every person kenichi has risked his life to defeat has by all intents and purposes in fact been irrelevant and replaceable. Ryuto, boris, sho, koukin, ethan and jihan were all brats and disciples, they were not important and intrinsic parts of yami. Defeating the lot of them has not caused yami any actual issues in regards to their grand scale plans, defeating them only means a small dent in their pride. Realistically speaking even the notion that defeating a few masters could actually hold back the plans of an organization as large as yami is ludicrous because that is not how leadership actually works. Yami is a world wide organization which controls governments and massive amounts of money (rimi wears actual gold shoes and akira's disciples train with body sized tools made entirely out of gold). Does defeating the OSNF cut its funds? How can the organization ever be stopped if they continue to manage those funds even after defeating the OSNF?
Heck, boris has even pointed out that they could just ignore ryozampaku as they are just a meager group of six people. Yami is not even fighting ryozampaku because they are threats, they pay attention to them because of pride. If they wanted they could just ignore the lot of them and have then destroy irrelevant bases for eternity. If anything, the only actual blow the ryozampaku guys might have ever dealt to yami was the information bit during the agaard fight however that was actually irrelevant to the stealing of information and the actual blow was dealt by nijima. So..... nijima in a single moment has done more damage to yami than every ryozampaku master combined times ten. And it might nor have been that big a deal as yami seems to be working about as steadily as always for the setting sun plan or w/e.
I think the story is "History's strongest disciple" hence, he'll be the strongest disciple class. Meaning he'll be stronger in the end then all yomi members.
I dont see him facing a yami master...maybe holding his own enough to flee while his own masters are around to intercept and protect him, but not enough to fight a master class...and even that feat will not be anytime soon.
The masters are all a little older for a reason. I dont think someone who recently started martial arts at the teenage year can become master class in that short time. The manga hasn't been THAT unreasonable thus far so i expect it to continue along that route.
I think the most we can expect from kenishi in the end is reaching Tanaka's level or maybe just a bit above it...not master class
Well, Tanaka has gotten stronger compared to his sparing with Ken-chan and is currently reffered by Elder as being really close to Master class. Kenichi also powered up pretty much after he fought Tanaka. Of course he isn't that close to a Master, but you should remember that there are different Masters. The same Fortuna was Master as well and he was bitten by entire Shinpaku Alliance that wasn't at his full power... Of course Fortuna understimated them and was off guard, but still.
Kenichi already has some close to Master level traits like his endurance. It is reffered as being close to Master Class. I do believe that in two Arcs with just fighting against Yomi members and also learning some moves from Elder and other Masters from Ryozanpaku Kenichi can become quiet close to a low-Master Level.
P.S. You shouldn't forget:
1. We are talking about achieving garbage-Master Class for now.
2. Kenichi showed an insane growth-speed. He managed to become better than all the so-called geniuses who were training and fighting their entire lives.
3. Kenichi barely shows all that he has to offer. It was even stated in the fight against Kano Shou. He only comes to his best performance in two situations (when Miu is in danger and when he is unconcious).
4. After learning any of Elder's Special techs he became considerably stronger. Just by learning Korui Nuki he managed to take down Ethan quite comfortably.
5. Kenichi's Masters always say that he doesn't have options. He will become Master.
6. You should also remember that it's a shounen manga.
Even garbage master class has been shown to be extremely far away from kenichi's current level though. Take a look at tanaka. The guy was not even a master class fighter and even then he almost killed kenichi. Heck, being completely fair kenichi only supposedly won that fight based on a courtesy he gave tanaka. Tanaka at that point was not even a proper garbage master class fighter, being on the high end of expert class means that by all intents and purposes he was beneath any level of master. Pengulu was even strong enough to give miu the fodder treat alone and he was at an undisclosed position within the expert class too....
I am not questioning kenichi's insane growth but rather the gap he has to fulfill to be at any level of mastery. His growth rate being above average does not mean he is not lightyears away from mastery. Its not about his grown rate not being fast, its about the distance he has yet to fall into mastery being so massively and incomprehensibly large that even the speed at which he falls is not enough for him to make it to master is several years. Miu is the best example of how large the gap ultimately is regardless of how much kenichi grows. She is able to outright walk up to kenichi and plain murder him without significant trouble (shown repeatedly when she was manipulated by junazad) and even then she is supposedly at the same class as kenichi. She is not even at a level where tanaka would sweat against her and even then he is either a strong expert or garbage class master.
All of you are forgetting that not even two years (!) has passed within the manga. Kenichi has only been practicing martial arts for probably less than 1 1/2 years. Kenichi went from zero to being on par with Shou within a year. He could very well reach master-class by the end of the second year, with the third year having him go from pseudo master-class to super master-class.
Ignore things like "reasonable power progression". It's clear by now that HSDK suffers from bad pacing, flawed power progression, inconsistent feats, etc. Matsuena decides how strong Kenichi is based on the plot's current needs. If the plot demands Kenichi be master-class next chapter, he will be master-class next chapter, regardless of the nonsense surrounding the writing.
You might have to meditate on what i'm about to write because you might not understand where i'm coming from at first...
To be honest i don't even think considering the 'Classes' is neccesary, if you take that Kenichi is supposed to be histories strongest disciple and you consider disciple to be a class then you also assume that he surpasses what his masters were when they were top end disciples, if that happens then he is no longer part of this 'disciple class'. The name of the anime pretty much covers it if he is 'histories strongest disciple' then he is only as strong as every other 'maxed out' disciple... and that is a basic contradiction of terms, so in reality you cannot use the name of the anime to confine him to the disciple class when to become histories strongest disciple he automatically exceeds the disciple class...
In terms of how strong he will become i imagine he will indeed become ridiculously strong but the manga is likely to simply power him up depending on the enemy he faces, so if eventually he has to beat a master then he will become strong enough to do so, it won't just randomly happen there will be progression but as i said it all depends on who he has to beat. So in terms of whether he will become a master i would be inclined to say yes... the basic logic of the manga is that Kenichi beats one person then someone even stronger comes along, eventually he will fight and beat masters though the manga may simply show Kenichi to be that strong with some time skip at the very end after the main plots, or they may make him that strong within the main plots, it just depends on what the writer wants.
i'm looking forward to any feedback.