Yokozuna Hakuho emerged in pole position for his push for a 42nd career championship when the rankings for March's Spring Grand Sumo Tournament were published Monday.
For the first time in exactly five years, wrestlers will enter the raised ring with just two yokozuna at the top of the Japan Sumo Association's rankings. In March 2014, Kakuryu captured his maiden championship and was promoted to yokozuna after two straight 14-1 records.
From March 10 to March 24 at Edion Arena Osaka, Kakuryu and Mongolian compatriot Hakuho will be the only two yokozuna. They will be expected to stave off the advances of sumo's young guns, led by 26-year-old komusubi Mitakeumi and 22-year-old sekiwake Takakeisho.