Takakeisho pushed out sekiwake Daieisho on Tuesday to improve to 8-2 and remain tied for the lead with four other wrestlers at the Autumn Grand Sumo Championship.
The ozeki shares the top of the standings with sekiwake Shodai, as well as No. 8 maegashira Wakatakakage, No. 9 Onosho and No. 14 Tobizaru after 10 days of action at Tokyo’s Ryogoku Kokugikan.
Ozeki Asanoyama remains one win back at 7-3 after picking up his second win of the meet by forfeit. His Day 10 opponent, No. 5 Kiribayama (6-4), withdrew from their scheduled bout with a shoulder injury.
The two highest-ranked wrestlers competing at the 15-day tournament are each seeking their second Emperor’s Cup in the absence of ailing grand champions Hakuho and Kakuryu.
In a pushing and thrusting battle, Takakeisho had no trouble absorbing an initial attack from Daieisho (3-7) before shoving the newly-promoted sekiwake off balance and driving him over the straw.
Shodai stayed in the hunt for his first makuuchi championship and an ozeki promotion by forcing out No. 3 Terutsuyoshi (3-7).
Terutsuyoshi was quick off the mark, attacking Shodai head on, but the sekiwake used his superior power and bulk to reverse the momentum and lift his opponent over the straw.
“I’m feeling good and moving well. I just want to be aggressive in my matches. I’m not thinking about the championship, I just want to win one bout at a time and things will fall into place,” Shodai said.
In other bouts, July grand tournament winner Terunofuji dropped to 7-3 after being pushed out by fellow No. 1 Takanosho (6-4).
The defeat snapped a streak of seven straight wins for the former ozeki from Mongolia, who is bidding for a return to the three elite sanyaku ranks beneath yokozuna.
The 25-year-old Wakatakakage secured a winning record by toppling No. 12 Kotoshoho (6-4).
Tobizaru continued his impressive makuuchi debut by clinching the all-important eighth win against No. 7 Ryuden (3-7).
Former komusubi Onosho pushed out No. 6 Takayasu (6-4) to continue his strong performance following a forgettable July tournament in which he lost 13 straight bouts.
Sekiwake Mitakeumi improved to 6-4 by forcing out No. 4 Tochinoshin (4-6).
The former ozeki from Georgia made a strong start, slapping Mitakeumi’s face and grabbing his belt, but the sekiwake held firm before driving his way to a comfortable victory.
Komusubi Okinoumi fell to 3-7 after losing to No. 5 Takarafuji (6-4), who countered with a thrust down after being pushed to the edge.
Komusubi Endo is also on the verge of a losing tournament at 3-7 after getting spun around and pushed down from behind by No. 2 Tamawashi (5-5).
In a time of both misinformation and too much information, quality journalism is more crucial than ever.
By subscribing, you can help us get the story right.