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Friday, Jan. 10, 2003

Chiyotaikai not healing quick enough

Ozeki Chiyotaikai is set to withdraw from the upcoming New Year Grand Sumo Tournament after failing to fully recover from an arm injury, sumo officials said Thursday.

"He was planning to wrestle but he hasn't been able to train properly for the tournament and wouldn't be in top condition," said stablemaster Kokonoe.

Doctors initially ordered three months of rest for Chiyotaikai after he injured muscles in his right arm midway through the Kyushu Basho in November.

But he had hoped to make a quick return to the ring ahead of the New Year tournament, which starts Sunday. He finally admitted defeat in his battle to regain fitness after taking part in a training session on Wednesday.

"I had hoped to wrestle but I'm not fully fit and still can't use the right side of my body freely," Chiyotaikai said.

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