Sumo

Ozeki Goeido pulls out of Kyushu tournament

Kyodo

Ozeki Goeido pulled out of the ongoing Kyushu Grand Sumo Tournament on Monday, citing a left-ankle injury.

The 33-year-old Japanese wrestler, in sumo’s second-highest rank, sustained the injury on Sunday, the opening day of the 15-day meet at Fukuoka Kokusai Center, when he lost to komusubi Endo.

“I think it’s going to take some time (until I recover),” Goeido told reporters while revealing that he was diagnosed with ligament damage.

“I have to tell my fans I’m terribly sorry,” he said.

According to his stablemaster Sakaigawa, there are no plans for Goeido to return to the ring during the tournament, meaning he will compete as a demotion-threatened kadoban in January’s New Year meet.

Sakaigawa explained that Goeido has been unable to walk without crutches as the pain has worsened.

“This is really too bad. I saw the way he fell and had a bad feeling. You can rarely tell by looking at his face when he’s hurt, but this time you could,” Sakaigawa said.

It is the 10th time in his career Goeido will miss all or part of a meet, and the ninth time he will have kadoban status.

He forfeited Monday’s scheduled bout against top-ranked maegashira Okinoumi.

The news about Goeido comes a day after grand champion Kakuryu pulled out of the Nov. 10-24 event due to a back injury sustained in practice.