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Ozeki Goeido won his eighth straight bout at the Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament on Monday to take sole lead and secure his status in sumo’s second-highest rank.

Goeido (8-1), who would have faced demotion with a losing record in the 15-day event, appeared uncharacteristically cautious against No. 2 maegashira Aoiyama (0-2 with seven rest days due to injury) but thrust the Bulgarian down after sidestepping his charge at Ryogoku Kokugikan in Tokyo.

No. 3 maegashira Onosho and 12th-ranked Daishomaru, who began the day in a three-way tie for the lead, lost their ninth-day matches to fall one win back of Goeido.

Onosho fell on all fours after a viciously attacking third-ranked Chiyotairyu took a subtle step to his right before slapping the up-and-coming 20-year-old down to the dirt, leaving both wrestlers at 7-2. Onosho has lost all three of his career meetings against Chiyotairyu.

Daishomaru’s determined slapping and shoving had no effect on Takarafuji (6-3), and the larger No. 8 maegashira shoved him out of the dohyo ring.

No. 9 Takanoiwa is the fourth wrestler at 7-2 after he slapped down 14th-ranked Endo (5-4).

In the day’s last bout, yokozuna Harumafuji picked up his fourth straight win by making a low charge against Shodai (4-5) and edging the fifth-ranked maegashira out of the ring.

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