NAGOYA - Yokozuna Hakuho and Kakuryu led the charge at the Nagoya Grand Sumo Tournament after each claiming second straight wins on Monday, while the mixed results continued for the rest of the sport’s elite.
Hakuho prevailed in his first top-division match-up with May’s champion, No. 1 maegashira Asanoyama (1-1), fighting back from the edge of the straw at Dolphins Arena and holding out to employ a fatal overarm throw.
Kakuryu (2-0) showed off some fancy footwork to stay alive against No. 1 Hokutofuji (0-2). The yokozuna was pulled into danger by the top-ranked maegashira but executed a lightning spin to turn the tables on Hokutofuji and slap him down.
Goeido improved to 1-1 with an easy victory over new komusubi Abi, who has yet to record a win in his first tournament as a sanyaku wrestler in the three ranks below yokozuna. The ozeki immediately shifted to the left and used Abi’s belt to help the unbalanced young gun meet the clay.
Ryuden (1-1) got his first win as a new komusubi following a tenacious rematch with ozeki Takayasu (1-1).
In their first bout, the two wrestlers swung each other around the ring into a stalemate. After a brief respite, Ryuden took the ozeki over the edge while falling off the dohyo himself, resulting in the ringside judges ordering a rematch.
The second bout went much the same way, with Ryuden getting Takayasu to hit the clay first and come out on top in the test of endurance.
Returning ozeki Tochinoshin took his second loss after a bout with No. 3 Shodai (2-0). The Georgian was simply outmuscled by Shodai despite locking into his favored migi-yotsu right-underarm, left-overarm hold.
Mitakeumi (1-1) claimed his first win of the tournament and pulled ahead in a nine-bout top-division rivalry with No. 2 Endo (1-1). The returning sekiwake launched Endo back with a powerful initial shove and drove the maegashira out with some well-executed thrusts.
Sekiwake Tamawashi remains winless after falling to Bulgarian No. 2 Aoiyama (2-0). After a lackluster initial clash, the Mongolian miscalculated a shoving maneuver as Aoiyama stepped aside to reap the reward.