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Monday, Sept. 12, 2005

Futeno fells Asashoryu

Autumn Basho opens with a bang

Mongolian grand champion Asashoryu was upset by komusubi Futeno on Sunday, the opening day of the Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament in Tokyo.

News photo
Komusubi Futeo pushes yokozuna Asashoryu out of the ring Sunday on the opening day of the Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament at Tokyo's Ryogoku Kokugikan.

Asashoryu, gunning for his 13th Emperor's Cup and sixth straight title, was in trouble from the outset when he was shoved back at the faceoff by the determined komusubi.

After forcing Asashoryu to the edge, Futeno got a hold of the yokozuna's belt and lifted the stunned Mongolian out and over to the delight of the crowd at Ryogoku Kokugikan.

In other bouts, ozeki Tochiazuma showed poise at the edge of the ring when he held on to upend Mongolian Hakuho.

Tochiazuma forced top maegashira Hakuho over the straw ridge after getting a hold of his opponent's belt with his left hand.

The 204-cm Bulgarian Kotooshu, who is making his debut at sekiwake, sidestepped Kokkai at the edge and swatted the No. 2 maegashira from Georgia out for an easy victory.

Chiyotaikai, who is recovering from a knee injury and needs a winning record in this tournament to maintain his ozeki status, started off on the wrong foot when he was tripped up by No. 2 maegashira Kakizoe.

Kakizoe shoved Chiyotaikai back at the face off and then hauled the burly ozeki down at the center of the ring.

Kaio, who is nursing a sore leg, was the second ozeki casualty of the day when he was shoved down by top maegashira Miyabiyama shortly after the faceoff.

Kaio, who was contemplating pulling out of the 15-day tournament, was unable to generate any momentum at the initial charge and winced in pain after falling to the dirt surface.

Sekiwake Wakanosato kicked off his fall campaign with a convincing win over No. 3 maegashira Dejima, who was no match for the veteran grappler.

Third-ranked maegashira Kyokutenho of Mongolia dispatched komusubi Kotomitsuki to post an opening-day win.



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