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Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2001

DAY 3

Kaio falls to third sumo loss

Would-be yokozuna Kaio fell to his third straight loss of the Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament on Tuesday, getting dragged down by No. 2 maegashira Takanowaka as his hopes to attain sumo's ultimate rank all but disappeared.

Grand champion Musashimaru, meanwhile, remains the only top wrestler with a perfect record at Tokyo's Ryogoku Kokugikan after calmly disposing of top maegashira Kotonowaka on the third day of the 15-day tourney.

Kaio, winner of the Nagoya tourney in July, began the competition aiming for a title that would bring him promotion to sumo's top rank of yokozuna but the ozeki appears to have left his sumo at the stable as he remain winless over the first three days.

Kaio was up at Takanowaka (2-1) from the charge but the second-ranked maegashira twisted away from the Tomozuna stable grappler at the straw bales and sent the ozeki sprawling to a third loss.

Musashimaru looked to be in trouble at the face-off against Kotonowaka (1-2) but the huge Samoan did not panic and kept his composure to muscle the top maegashira out of the ring.

Musashimaru sits unbeaten atop the early standings in the race for the Emperor's Cup alongside three journeymen wrestlers.

With heavy rain falling outside all day, Mongolian "typhoon" Asashoryu hit inside the arena to take care of ozeki Chiyotaikai.

Top-ranked maegashira Asashoryu (2-1) once again outwitted a higher-ranked opponent and the Mongolian storm pulled Chiyotaikai (2-1) to the dirt in a matter of seconds for an easy win.

Elsewhere, relegation-threatened ozeki Miyabiyama (1-2) picked up his first win at the expense of winless komusubi Tamanoshima while fellow ozeki Musoyama (2-1) needed all his savvy and experience to slap down No. 2 maegashira Kotomitsuki (2-1).

Dejima (1-2) got on the winning charts for the first time and showed more of his old ozeki form in quickly shoving out No. 3 maegashira Tamakasuga (0-3). The Musashigawa stable sekiwake needs 10 wins this tourney for an immediate return to his former rank.

Down in the lower ranks, Mongolian No. 8 maegashira Kyokutenho (3-0) maintained his perfect record after lifting out seventh-ranked maegashira Hayateumi (0-3).



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