Hakuho brushes aside Endo


Mongolian yokozuna Hakuho kept a 31st career title in his sights with a routine win over No. 1 maegashira Endo on Monday, the second day of the Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament.

Hakuho soaked up Endo’s attack at the charge and found an opening to slap his opponent down for a second consecutive win at Tokyo’s Ryogoku Kokuguikan. Endo dropped to 0-2.

Chasing his third consecutive Emperor’s Cup, another championship victory here would move Hakuho even with yokozuna great Chiyonofuji and one from the all-time record of 32 held by sumo legend Taiho.

There were also wins at sumo’s top rank for Harumafuji and Kakuryu, but ozeki Kisenosato suffered an upset defeat to Aoiyama.

Harumafuji, a pedestrian 10-5 at the last tournament in Nagoya in July, head charged winless komusubi Chiyotairyu out to keep his share of the early lead, and Kakuryu (2-0) wrapped up the day’s action by pulling himself out of a tight spot to floor top-ranked maegashira Terunofuji 1-1.

Ozeki Kotoshogiku rebounded from his opening-day defeat in style, working Jokoryu (0-2) to the edge of the ring and then pulling the komusubi back and sending him to the dirt with a kotenage armlock throw.

Newly-promoted ozeki Goeido picked up his first win by default after his scheduled opponent, Toyonoshima, pulled out of the 15-day basho earlier in the day due to a left knee injury.

Toyonoshima, a No. 2 maegashira, sustained the injury in Sunday’s defeat to Kisenosato.

But Kisenosato (1-1) failed to complete a winning day for sumo’s second-highest rank when he was pulled down by the back of the neck by Bulgarian No. 3 maegashira Aoiyama (2-0).

Lower down the ranks, veteran Kyokutenho, at 40 the oldest wrestler in the elite class since the start of the six tournament system, stayed perfect after bumping out 16th-ranked Kagamio (0-2).

Mongolian-born No. 10 maegashira Ichinojo, who was allowed to start his pro career in the makushita division after a successful amateur showing, also made it two wins out of two on his top-flight debut by outlasting 11th-ranked Chiyomaru (0-2).