Hakuho, Kotooshu on top at Nagoya while Asa tumbles again


Asashoryu slipped to a second straight defeat at the hands of ozeki Chiyotaikai while rival yokozuna Hakuho and ozeki Kotooshu remained undefeated in a share of the lead on the ninth day of the Nagoya Grand Sumo Tournament on Monday.

Asashoryu apparently had not recovered mentally from the shock of a first defeat to Kisenosato the previous day as he lacked anything resembling sharpness against Chiyotaikai, who tugged him forward to the dohyo surface at Aichi Prefectural Gymnasium.

Asashoryu slipped to a 7-2 slate while Chiyotaikai improved to 5-4.

Hakuho, meanwhile, was solid as titanium as he blasted out sekiwake Kakuryu (3-6) in a fury in the day’s final bout to improve to 9-0. The Mongolian grand champion is seeking his 11th career title and first in two meets.

Bulgarian Kotooshu locked horns in a marathon bout with Kaio and had to work hard before toppling the veteran ozeki over the ring’s edge to stay perfect. Kaio slipped to 5-4.

Kotomitsuki twisted down Harumafuji with an armbar technique right after the face-off, sending his ozeki rival to a third defeat and dashing all hopes of his promotion to yokozuna this time out.

Harumafuji won his career first title at the summer meet in May and was in line for promotion at the Nagoya meet until suffering two defeats in the first five days and sealing a lackluster performance on the ninth day of the 15-day meet.

Sekiwake Kisenosato got a grip on Aran’s (1-8) mawasahi before muscling out the No. 1 maegashira to stay two off the co-leaders.

Estonian man-mountain Baruto bulldozed winless Tochiozan to the edge of the ring before deciding to toss him down with an arm-pulling technique to pick up his seventh win.

Aminishiki got both arms hands under the armpits of Iwakiyama (2-7) before rushing his opponent over the edge for a seventh win to keep himself close in the title race.

In the lower echelon, Georgian Tochinoshin knocked back Takekaze (4-5) with a hard shove at the face-off before swatting his opponent to the dirt, improving his record to 6-3.

Crowd favorite Takamisakari (5-4), meanwhile, gave makuuchi debutant Mokonami (4-5) a sumo clinic, stopping the No. 7 maegashira in his tracks before dragging him to the dohyo surface.