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Saturday, March 18, 2006

Asashoryu retains share of lead at Osaka Basho

OSAKA (AP) Yokozuna Asashoryu overwhelmed Hokutoriki on Friday to stay tied for the lead at the Spring Grand Sumo Tournament.

News photo
Top-Ranked Maegashira Kokkai slams down Kaio to give and ozeki the third consecutive defeat in the Spring Grand Sumo Tournament Friday at Osaka Municipal Gymnasium.

In the day's final bout at Osaka Prefectural Gymnasium, Asashoryu barely broke a sweat when he got both arms around the No. 2 maegashira and waltzed him out to improve to 6-0, tied with compatriot Hakuho.

Ozeki Kotooshu bounced back from an upset loss to Ama on Thursday when he got both hands on the belt of Roho and shoved the Russian komusubi out to pick up his fourth win against a pair of losses.

Roho, who is making his komusubi debut, fell to 1-5.

Mongolian sekiwake Hakuho stayed tied for the lead at 6-0 after using a left-hand arm throw to send compatriot Ama sprawling to the dirt surface.

Ama, a No. 2 maegashira, dropped to 3-3.

Hakuho is gunning for promotion to ozeki and is well on his way to securing the 13 wins he would need to move up the ranks.

Ozeki Tochiazuma, who won the New Year tourney, dodged a bullet when he was pushed back at the faceoff but swatted No. 3 maegashira Iwakiyama (1-5) down to improve to 5-1.

Tochiazuma is gunning for promotion to yokozuna and needs at least 12 wins to be considered for the sport's top rank.



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