Newly promoted ozeki Shodai pulled out of the ongoing November Grand Sumo Tournament Thursday after injuring his left ankle in an earlier bout.
Shodai, who was promoted to sumo’s second highest rank in September, was off to a 3-1 start in the final basho of the year but became the second of three ozeki to pull out of the 15-day meet at Tokyo’s Ryogoku Kokugikan.
On Tuesday, fellow ozeki Asanoyama also withdrew due to injury, leaving just Takakeisho in action. Both yokozuna, Hakuho and Kakuryu, said before opening day on Sunday they would not compete.
Shodai sustained the injury during his third-day bout in which he survived a close call against komusubi Takayasu to remain unbeaten. He suffered his first defeat on the fourth day and will forfeit his Day 5 bout against No. 2 maegashira Onosho.
It is the first time Shodai has exited midway through a tournament since making his debut in the spring of 2014. The 29-year-old from Kumamoto Prefecture fights out of the Tokitsukaze stable.
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