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Tuesday, May 22, 2001

Takanohana stays perfect

Yokozuna Takanohana overpowered ozeki Dejima on Monday to keep his perfect record unblemished and stay a step ahead of ozeki Chiyotaikai at the Summer Grand Sumo Tournament.

Ozeki Chiyotaikai stayed within one win of the lead and yokozuna Musashimaru is in a group of six wrestlers two back following a day of few upsets at the 15-day tourney at Tokyo's Ryokoku Kokugikan.

Takanohana (9-0) overwhelmed out-of-form Dejima (2-7) off the initial charge and easily muscled the Musashigawa stable ozeki out to remain the undisputed leader in the Emperor's Cup derby.

Chiyotaikai (8-1) rolled over Wakanosato (5-4), keeping the top-ranked maegashira at arms length with a series of forceful shoves before finally slapping him out.

The Kokonoe-stable grappler, sidelined through injury in January, has ensured he will remain at sumo's second highest rank after recording his eighth victory and ensuring himself an overall winning record for the tourney.

Yokozuna Musashimaru (7-2) got his strong right-arm grip on No. 3 maegashira Tosanoumi (2-7) and edged him out backward to remain in the hunt for the Emporer's Cup.

Ozeki Miyabiyama (7-2) made short work of Tochinohada (1-8), slapping the sekiwake down after the charge and remains alongside his Samoan-born senior in the title chase.

Newly-promoted komusubi Asashoryu (6-3) fanned Takanowaka (3-6) with another display of the speed and skills that excited the crowds in the first week.

The 20-year-old Mongolian was all the top-ranked maegashira could handle, lifting the leg of his heavier opponent before finally dumping him out of the ring.

Kaio (4-5) was forced to forfeit his bout against No. 4 maegashira Hayateumi (7-2).

The ozeki, who would have been promoted to sumo's highest rank had he won the Emperor's Cup, injured his lower back last month and had been unable to train properly in the lead-up to the event.

Early on, Kyokushuzan (7-2) slipped out of a throw by Akinoshima (4-5), swiveled his body around and forced his opponent out.

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