Hakuho Leaves Mark In Denying Tochiozan

Hakuho leaves mark in denying TochiozanMaking sure he would not be the second yokozuna in a row to lose to No. 1 maegashira Tochiozan, Hakuho gave him a reminder of the difficulty of the task of beating sumo’s most decorated wrestler.
Hakuho, who remained unbeaten after four days of the Nagoya Grand Sumo Tournament on Wednesday, was never challenged in forcing out Tochiozan, who left the main arena with a bloody nose from a devastating forearm blow at the jump-off.

Hakuho, pursuing a record-extending 38th title, chalked up his 991st career win in the uppermost makuuchi division and remained tied for the lead at 4-0 with the ozeki pair of Kisenosato and Terunofuji, as well as a handful of maegashira-ranked wrestlers.

Earlier at Aichi Prefectural Gym, yokozuna hopeful Kisenosato put on another display of textbook sumo, working in for a belt hold as he kept his center of gravity low, then pressing ahead to safely force out No. 2 maegashira Okinoumi.

The Japan Sumo Association has made it plain that Kisenosato needs nothing less than his first career tournament title to secure promotion to yokozuna.

Rejuvenated ozeki Terunofuji, needing a winning record to retain his rank, kept his name among the leaders with a well-executed win over winless sekiwake Tochinoshin, who continues to struggle in his debut in the third-highest rank.

Yokozuna Harumafuji bounced back from a loss on Tuesday to Okinoumi by bulling out No. 1 maegashira Mitakeumi in the first-ever clash between the two to improve to 3-1.

The two underachieving ozeki had mixed results, with Goeido forcing out No. 4 maegashira Shohozan to even his record at 2-2, but Kotoshogiku remaining winless with a loss to No. 2 maegashira Takarafuji.

Kotoshogiku came out strong from the jump-off, but got overextended. When Takarafuji stepped aside, the ozeki was left a sitting duck and could only stand by meekly before being pushed out.