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Wednesday, July 7, 2004

Asashoryu remains perfect

NAGOYA (AP) Grand champion Asashoryu overpowered Kyokutenho, extending his string of wins to three Tuesday to stay atop the standings with four other wrestlers at the Nagoya Grand Sumo Tournament.

News photo
Sekiwake Tochiazuma (left) forces No. 2 maegashira Wakanosato out of the ring for his third straight win at Aichi Prefectural Gymnasium.

Asashoryu, who was beaten by his archrival in the May tournament, got the better of his fellow Mongolian this time, nudging Kyokutenho toward the ring's edge before lifting him off his feet and out.

Yokozuna Asashoryu, at 3-0, is gunning for his fourth straight Emperor's Cup and his eighth career title.

Also undefeated are sekiwake Tochiazuma, No. 7 maegashira Miyabiyama and two lower-ranked wrestlers.

Among the struggling ozeki, only Kaio emerged victorious to go 2-1.

Kaio quickly dispatched sekiwake Hokutoriki by yanking him down by the back of the head. Hokutoriki belly-flopped into the dirt, suffering his third loss.

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

But No. 2 maegashira Kokkai chased out ozeki Musoyama after keeping the bigger grappler at arm's length.

The Georgia native, a rising star whose name means "Black Sea" after the body of water near his homeland, is now 2-1. Musoyama fell to 1-2.

Iwakiyama beat ozeki Chiyotaikai by using the higher-ranked wrestler's own well-worn tactics against him. With a combination of face slaps and arm thrusts, No. 1 maegashira Iwakiyama kept Chiyotaikai on the retreat, pushing him out.

In the battle of the sekiwake, Tochiazuma outdueled Wakanosato, shoving out his bigger opponent by exploiting a misstep.

Maegashira Kasugao pulled out of the tournament after dislocating a toe.

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