Asa uncertain for Autumn Basho

Kyodo News

Asashoryu faces a race against the clock to be fit for next month’s Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament after revealing Saturday he has suffered a knee injury that will take four weeks to fully heal.

The fiery Mongolia grand champion hurt ligaments in his right knee during a regional summer tour in Akita on Aug. 13.

Speaking to reporters with his knee heavily strapped, Asashoryu said he has been undergoing treatment for a week but was hopeful of recovering in time to make the Autumn Basho, which begins on Sept. 13 in Tokyo.

“It (the knee) has hurt since quite a while ago and I am in pain when I stretch my leg,” said the 23-time Emperor’s Cup winner. “It is the first time I have had a knee injury. It is going to be touch and go for the (autumn) basho and I am just going to have to try and get it healed and make it in time.”