Injured Harumafuji pulls out of basho


Mongolian yokozuna Harumafuji withdrew from the New Year Grand Sumo Tournament on Saturday with a pulled right hamstring.

Harumafuji was hurt during his day five win over No. 3 maegashira Okinoumi before going on to win his bout against compatriot and sekiwake Tamawashi on Friday. His stable says the 32-year-old has ruled out of action for at least a month.

“He can’t do stampings and is barely walking. He can’t wrestle if he can’t walk,” stablemaster Isegahama said.

Harumafuji’s day seven opponent, another No. 3 maegashira Ikioi, will win by default.

Harumafuji’s opening-day won was followed by consecutive losses to No. 1 maegashira Mitakeumi and No. 2 maegashira Shohozan.

He bounced back with three consecutive victories, but will finish the tournament with a 4-3 record.

Harumafuji, who last withdrew from a tournament in September 2015, fails to complete a tournament for the seventh time in his career and for the fifth time since his promotion to the highest rank, during the lead-in to a November 2012 competition.

Harumafuji is the second wrestler to leave the year-opening tournament at Ryogoku Kokugikan after Georgian komusubi Tochinoshin was sidelined a day earlier with a right knee injury.