OSAKA – Hakuho outmuscled Mongolian countryman Kakuryu on the second day of action at the Spring Grand Sumo Tournament on Monday.
Hakuho made it two of two in the absence of former yokozuna Asashoryu, who retired last month amid allegations that he attacked a man outside a Tokyo nightclub.
Estonian sekiwake Baruto, meanwhile, charged ahead full throttle in his bid for ozeki promotion with a demolition of local favorite Goeido.
In the day’s final at Osaka Prefectural Gymnasium, Hakuho might as well have had the bout won before the pair even clashed as he oozed confidence into the raised ring before deploying a well-timed overarm throw against the winless No. 1 maegashira.
Baruto (2-0), who needs at least 13 wins this time to be considered for promotion to sumo’s second-highest rank, enveloped Goeido (0-2) with his massive arms, twisting the No. 3 wrestler to the side before calmly ushering him over the edge.
It was a day of mixed blessings for the four ozeki as both Kotomitsuki and Kotooshu bit the dust in their respective bouts.
Harumafuji (2-0), formerly known as Ama, got his right hand inside for a firm belt grip on Wakanosato (0-2) before lifting the No. 1 maegashira over the edge.
But Kotomitsuki (1-1), who is facing demotion for the first time, tried wrapping around Kisenosato (1-1) for a belt grip after the face-off, only for his plan to backfire as the komusubi gained the leverage to push him over the edge.
Ozeki stalwart Kaio (2-0) ran out Kyokutenho (0-2) in a frontal attack, showing no signs of retreat from his battle-torn body.