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Friday, May 14, 2004

Asashoryu wins 35th in a row

The Associated Press Grand champion Asashoryu showed no sign of letting up Thursday, while all three ozeki wrestlers were upset to fall further off the pace at the Summer Grand Sumo Tournament. Yokozuna Asashoryu forces down No. 3 maegashira Shimotori to extend his winning streak to 35.

Mongolian Asashoryu, who won the Spring tourney with a perfect 15-0 record, notched his 35th straight victory in the day's final bout at Tokyo's Ryogoku Kokugikan Arena to remain tied for the lead at 5-0 with top maegashira Hokutoriki, No. 4 maegashira Tokitsuumi and rank-and-filers Kinkaiyama and Futeno.

Asashoryu grabbed Shimotori's leg shortly after the face off and sent the No. 3 maegashira sprawling to the dirt.

Shimotori, a No. 3 maegashira, dropped to 3-2 in the 15-day meet.

Asashoryu is the overwhelming favorite to take home the Emperor's Cup for his third straight title.

In other major bouts, Kaio became the third ozeki to fall to defeat when he was manhandled by No. 2 maegashira Kakizoe in the penultimate bout.

Winners   Losers
Takanowaka 2-3   Asanowaka 1-4
Kinkaiyama 5-0   Kobo 2-3
Futeno 5-0   Jumonji 2-3
Kaiho 3-2   Hakuho 3-2
Harunoyama 2-3   Aminishiki 2-3
Hayateumi 2-3   Tosanoumi 3-2
Tochisakae 3-2   Toki 1-4
Kokkai 4-1   Kotoryu 3-2
Iwakiyama 4-1   Takekaze 2-3
Buyuzan 1-4   Kyokushuzan 1-4
Tamanoshima 4-1   Asasekiryu 1-4
Hokutoriki 5-0   Takamisakari 2-3
Kotonowaka 2-3   Tochinonada 1-4
Miyabiyama 1-4   Kyokutenho 1-4
Wakanosato 4-1   Kotomitsuki 2-3
Dejima 1-4   Chiyotaikai 3-2
Tokitsuumi 5-0   Musoyama 2-3
Kakizoe 2-3   Kaio 3-2
Asashoryu 5-0   Shimotori 3-2

Kakizoe improved to 2-3 when he forced Kaio back to the edge and bulldozed him out to his second loss.

Ozeki Chiyotaikai was dealt a major blow to his title hopes when he was handed his second straight loss in a bout against Dejima.

Chiyotaikai, who fell to 3-2, came charging out of the blocks with his trademark arm thrusts, but Dejima used his low center of gravity to force the burly ozeki out while picking up his first win of the tournament.

Musoyama became the second ozeki casualty on the day when Tokitsuumi did a balancing act on the straw ridge while shoving the veteran wrestler out to his third loss.

In an earlier bout, Hokutoriki improved to 5-0 after he deployed several powerful arm thrusts to the neck to send fan-favorite Takamisakari backpedaling out of the ring. Takamisakari, a No. 4 maegashira, dropped to 2-3.

Sekiwake Wakanosato improved to 4-1 when he turned the tables on Kotomitsuki (2-3) and shoved the komusubi wrestler into the first row of seats.

Georgian-born Kokkai, a No. 7 maegashira, improved to 4-1 when he spun Kotoryu around at the faceoff and shoved the No. 9 maegashira out to his second loss.

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