Grand champion Asashoryu overpowered ozeki Kaio to stay unbeaten and in sole possession of the lead on the 12th day of the Kyushu Grand Sumo Tournament yesterday.
In the day's final bout at the Fukuoka Kokusai Center, Asashoryu grabbed Kaio with a left-hand grip before taking a right, upper-hand grip on the belt of the ozeki, forcing him out of the ring.
Asashoryu, who is bidding for his 19th Emperor's Cup and is two wins ahead of rank-and-filer Homasho, improved to 12-0 while Fukuoka native Kaio fell to 9-3.
In other major bouts, ozeki Chiyotaikai improved to 9-3, when he deployed a barrage of arm thrusts to the upper body of sekiwake Kotomitsuki before pushing him down to the dirt surface.
Kotomitsuki dropped to 8-4.
Sekiwake Miyabiyama picked up his sixth win against six defeats when he spun ozeki Kotooshu around soon after the faceoff and sent him out of the raised ring. Bulgarian Kotooshu dropped to 8-4.
Ozeki Tochiazuma bounced back from Tuesday's loss to Kotomitsuki, when he threw rising star Homasho down onto the dirt surface. Tochiazuma improved to 9-3 while Homasho, a 11th-ranked maegashira, fell to 10-2.
Elsewhere, Kotoshogiku quickly grabbed komusubi Roho with a right-hand grip before forcing the Russian out to pick up his seventh win against five losses. Roho fell to 6-6. Komusubi Kisenosato drove out second-ranked maegashira Futeno to improve to 6-6, while dealing the second-ranked maegashira his eighth loss against four wins.