Mon, Jan 19, 2009 - Page 20 News List

Champ forges on at sumo tourney

AP , TOKYO

Sumo grand champion Asashoryu of Mongolia, right, pushes Yoshikaze out of the ring at the New Year Grand Sumo Tournament in Tokyo, Japan, on Saturday.

PHOTO: AFP

Grand champion Asashoryu dominated sekiwake Aminishiki yesterday to remain tied for the lead at the New Year Grand Sumo Tournament with fellow Mongolian Hakuho and Tochiozan.

In the day’s final bout at Ryogoku Kokugikan, Asashoryu overwhelmed Aminishiki from the outset and shoved the sekiwake over the edge in a matter of seconds.

Asashoryu improved to 8-0 while Aminishiki, who needed to be helped off the ring, dropped to 3-5.

In other major bouts, grand champion Hakuho stayed tied for the lead after a hard-fought win over komusubi Kisenosato.

Kisenosato forced Hakuho back after the faceoff, but the Mongolian wrestler displayed the composure of a yokozuna and shoved his opponent out to improve to 8-0. Kisenosato was handed his fifth loss against three wins.

Estonian Baruto upset ozeki Chiyotaikai to remain one win off the pace.

Sekiwake Baruto fought off a thrust to the upper body by Chiyotaikai, got both arms around the ozeki and hoisted him out to improve to 7-1 in the 15-day meet. Chiyotaikai dropped to 6-2.

Baruto lost to Bulgarian Kotooshu on Saturday and needed a win yesterday to stay in contention for the Emperor’s Cup.

Kotooshu also stayed one win off the pace at 7-1 when he got a grip of Goeido’s belt and bumped the No. 3 maegashira over the straw ridge. Goeido fell to 6-2.

Ozeki Kotomitsuki bounced back from four straight losses when he shoved out No. 2 maegashira Yoshikaze to give both wrestlers a record of 2-6.

Newly promoted ozeki Harumafuji overpowered Kaio to post his second straight win and improve to 3-5.

Kaio dropped to 5-3.

In an earlier bout, No. 12 maegashira Tochiozan forced out No. 16 Homasho (5-3) to maintain a share of the lead.

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