Kisenosato hurts left ankle during loss to Ikioi

Kyodo

Struggling yokozuna Kisenosato suffered a fresh injury blow when he hurt his left ankle at the Nagoya Grand Sumo Tournament on Thursday, casting doubts over whether he can continue wrestling at the 15-day meet.

His stablemaster Tagonoura said the yokozuna had tests after Thursday’s bout at the hospital and that there were no broken bones. Tagonoura said he will check on Kisenosato’s situation on Friday morning before deciding whether or not he can compete.

Kisenosato, who pulled out of the Summer Basho in May due to arm and chest injuries, suffered the latest setback in a defeat to third-ranked maegashira Ikioi, his third in five bouts in Nagoya.

Kisenosato was limping after the loss and he did not speak to reporters.

Tagonoura said, “I think he is thinking that he wants to carry on.”

Kisenosato won his first Emperor’s Cup at January’s New Year tournament to earn promotion to sumo’s highest rank of yokozuna. He fought through injury on the last two days of the spring meet in March and came from behind to win his second championship in dramatic fashion.

But he is said to have rushed his rehab ahead of his three-peat bid at the summer tournament, eventually having to withdraw after being diagnosed with damage to the muscles in his chest and left upper arm.