SUMO

Kisenosato, Takayasu remain in lead at spring tourney

OSAKA —

Yokozuna Kisenosato and sekiwake Takayasu, both wrestlers of the Tagonoura stable, remained in a share of the lead with 9-0 records Monday at the Spring Grand Sumo Tournament.

Sekiwake Kotoshogiku made a strong charge against Kisenosato, taking little time to bulldoze the new grand champion to the edge of the ring at Edion Arena Osaka, but lost his balance and fell to the ground to his third loss as his opponent sidestepped his shove.

Kisenosato now has 30 wins against 33 losses to Kotoshigiku in their head-to-head record.

After clashing in their faceoff, Takekaze gave Takayasu a big shove leftward but the sekiwake stayed calm and used his left hand to slap the top-ranked maegashira down to his sixth defeat. Takayasu improved to 4-10 against Takekaze.

With six days remaining in the 15-day tourney, Mongolian ozeki Terunofuji and No. 10 maegashira Tochiozan are one pace off the leaders.

Terunofuji, who would have been demoted with a losing record at this meet, ascertained he will retain his status by edging out No. 1 maegashira Ikioi (1-7) to pick up his eighth win here and second against Ikioi in their ninth meeting.

Tochiozan slapped down 15th-ranked maegashira Tokushoryu (6-3) to improve to 8-1.

Two Mongolian wrestlers stand another win back at 7-2—yokozuna Kakuryu, who pushed out No. 3 maegashira Takarafuji (5-4) with thrusts to the throat, and seventh-ranked Chiyoshoma, who defeated Bulgarian No. 6 maegashira Aoiyama (4-5).

Yokozuna Harumafuji (6-3) withstood several underarm throw attempts by Arawashi (2-7) but finally succumbed to the No. 4 maegashira as he stepped outside the edge of the ring backward after being able to maintain his balance.

No. 5 maegashira Endo edged out eighth-ranked Okinoumi (5-4) for his sixth win, while two 13th-ranked maegashira Daishomaru and Takakeisho also improved to 6-3 after shoving out ninth-ranked Kotoyuki (2-7) and No. 16 maegashira Nishikigi (3-6), respectively.

© KYODO

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