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Sunday, March 28, 2004

Asashoryu keeps on rolling

OSAKA (Kyodo) Yokozuna Asashoryu blew away ozeki Musoyama to remain unbeaten and in sole possession of the lead with one day remaining at the Spring Grand Sumo Tournament on Saturday, while ozeki Chiyotaikai suffered his first loss in a head-to-head collision with ozeki Kaio at the Osaka meet.

Winners   Losers
Chiyotenzan 3-11   Oikari * 6-8
Toki 8-6   Ushiomaru 7-7
Asanowaka 5-9   Wakanoyama 2-12
Kotonowaka 10-4   Takekaze 8-6
Harunoyama 8-6   Kasuganishiki 4-10
Toyozakura 6-8   Kotoryu 7-7
Futeno 6-8   Buyuzan 8-6
Kaiho 9-5   Kokkai 8-6
Kinkaiyama 4-10   Yotsukasa 6-8
Takanonami 5-9   Jumonji 4-10
Tochinonada 7-7   Takamisakari 7-7
Hokutoriki 9-5   Dejima 7-7
Kyokutenho 9-5   Tochisakae 6-8
Asasekiryu 13-1   Miyabiyama 8-6
Kyokushuzan 4-10   Aminishiki 2-12
Tokitsuumi 7-7   Kakizoe 5-9
Shimotori 6-8   Tamanoshima 5-9
Wakanosato 7-7   Iwakiyama 7-7
Kotomitsuki 6-8   Tosanoumi 4-10
Kaio 12-2   Chiyotaikai 13-1
Asashoryu 14-0   Musoyama 9-5
* denotes juryo class wrestler

In the day's final match at Osaka Prefectural Gymnasium, Mongolian grand champion Asashoryu showed Musoyama a quick exit as he throttled the ozeki by the neck and sent him over the edge in a fury to keep an immaculate 14-0 record.

It was Asashoryu's 29th consecutive win since capturing the New Year title with a spotless 15-0 record in January. He can win his second consecutive title outright and tie former grand champion Takanohana for 30 successive wins if he beats Chiyotaikai on Sunday.

In an all-ozeki affair, Chiyotaikai never got the wheels turning in his thrusting arsenal as Kaio quickly took control and bellied his rival over the straw bales with minimal effort to claim his 12th win.

In the other key bout, rank-and-filer Asasekiryu made mincemeat out of Miyabiyama, pulling down the top-ranked maegashira with a deft arm-throw right after the face-off. The Mongolian still has a shot at the title as he improved to 13-1.

News photo
Yokozuna Asashoryu forces ozeki Musoyama out to remain the only unbeaten wrestler (14-0) with one day remaining at the Spring Grand Tournament on Saturday at Osaka Prefectural Gymnasium.

Elsewhere, Wakanosato (7-7) moved a victory away from notching a winning record as he deployed a beltless arm-throw on No. 5 maegashira Iwakiyama, who also moved to 7-7.

Sekiwake Kotomitsuki charged like a bull and rammed out Tosanoumi, sending the No. 4 maegashira to his 10th defeat while picking up his sixth win.

Crowd favorite Takamisakari was bundled over the edge in a hurry by Tochinonada and saw his record fall to 7-7. Tochinonada also stands at 7-7.

Kokkai, a wrestler from the former Soviet republic of Georgia, was sent sprawling to his sixth defeat in a battle with Kaiho, who improved to 9-5.

In other bouts, newly promoted komusubi Kakizoe (5-9) lost in a brawl with Tokitsuumi when the fifth-ranked maegashira dragged him down with a beltless arm maneuver to move to 7-7.

Komusbi Shimotori, meanwhile made quick work of Tamanoshima, disposing of the No. 3 maegashira with a right-hand frontal charge.

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