Kisenosato condemned overnight leader and fellow ozeki Terunofuji to his second consecutive defeat on Friday to throw the title race open with two days remaining at the Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament.
Yokozuna Kakuryu took full advantage of Terunofuji’s loss in the day’s last bout as he blasted out ozeki Goedio (6-7) to move alongside his compatriot at 11-2.
Kisenosato and 12th-ranked maegashira Ikioi are a further win back at 10-3.
Kisenosato secured the win when he surged forward and put Terunofuji on his backside before crashing down on top of him at Ryogoku Kokugikan.
Terunofuji, who had stayed one win clear despite losing to Tochiozan on Thursday, limped back to the locker room with what appeared to be a right knee injury, with a wheelchair in close pursuit of the Mongolian summer champion.
Ozeki Kotoshogiku (9-4), who nearly managed to scrape together a winning record and avoid demotion in Nagoya, scored a quick-fire win over No. 3 maegashira Sadanoumi.
Sekiwake Myogiryu (7-6) wasted little time in chasing out Russian No. 7 maegashira Amuru (7-6) and ozeki hopeful Tochiozan (8-5) made it a winning double for sumo’s third-highest rank with a comfortable force-out win over veteran maegashira Aminishiki (7-6).
Okinoumi (6-7) soaked up a barrage of neck thrusts before pulling back and seeing off fifth-ranked maegashira Tamawashi (3-10) and fellow komusubi Tochinoshin (8-5) bumped out Ikioi to saddle him with back-to-back defeats.
Georgian grappler Tochinoshin secured a winning record for the first time in the sanyaku ranks, the three ranks below yokozuna in the elite makuuchi division.
Mongolian No. 4 maegashira Ichinojo denied Osunaarashi a majority of wins with two bouts to spare, outmuscling the second -ranked Egyptian at the edge of the ring to leave both wrestlers with 7-6 marks.
Top-ranked maegashira Yoshikaze got his right hand around the back of Toyonoshima’s (9-4) knee and sent him hopping back and over the edge for an ashitori leg-pick win.
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