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Kakuryu stays unbeaten

Kyodo

Kakuryu continued his perfect start to his debut at yokozuna with a routine win against Chiyotairyu on Tuesday at the Summer Grand Sumo Tournament in Tokyo.

The Mongolian got stuck in at the charge in the day’s finale and No. 2 maegashira Chiyotairyu was unable to put up much of a fight, quickly crumpling in a heap in the middle of the dohyo at Ryogoku Kokugikan.

Kakuryu, fellow yokozuna Hakuho and ozeki Kiseonsato are among a group of eight makuuchi wrestlers with perfect 3-0 records. Chiyotairyu dropped to 1-2.

In the day’s penultimate bout, Hakuho, who is seeking his 29th career title and first in two meets, was all business as he smashed Aoiyama (0-3) into the front row of ringside cushions, leaving the Bulgarian with a bloodied head.

Chasing a seventh championship, Harumafuji looked convincing for the first time this tournament, showing nifty footwork at the tachiai to get forward and mow down winless No. 1 maegashira Takekaze.

In other key bouts, Kotoshogiku (2-1) failed to capitalize on three chances to put away Chiyootori (1-2) after a wobbly start.

The ozeki paid the price as Chiyootori countered to get both hands on the back of his belt and bump him over the edge.

But Kisenosato salvaged some pride for sumo’s second rank with a hard-fought “yorikiri” win against second-ranked maegashira Takarafuji (0-3).

Kisenosato, who has made two unsuccessful bids for yokozuna promotion, and Kotoshogiku are the only two wrestlers left at ozeki after Kakuryu was promoted to yokozuna following the spring meet.

Popular maegashira Endo rebounded from Monday’s defeat to former komusubi Shohozan, unleashing a series of meaty shoves to force out sixth-ranked Tamawashi (1-2) to move to 2-1.