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Wednesday, Sept. 13, 2006

Asashoryu, five others tied for basho lead

Yokozuna Asashoryu claimed another victim to remain undefeated Tuesday, disposing of Aminishiki to win his third straight bout at the Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament in Tokyo.

News photo
Sekiwake Miyabiyama, right, smacks ozeki Tochiazuma's face on the third day of the Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament at Ryogoku Kokugikan. Miyabiyama won. KYODO PHOTO

Ozeki countryman Hakuho, meanwhile, had to dodge a bullet to stay one off the pace in a win over Tamanoshima en route to moving a step closer in his bid for yokozuna promotion at the 15-day tournament.

In the day's final bout at Ryogoku Kokugikan, Asashoryu was never in trouble as he quickly ushered out Aminishiki with a series of thrusts to the chest. Aminishiki dropped to 1-2.

Asashoryu, who shares the early lead at 3-0 with ozeki Kotooshu and four rank-and-filers, is aiming to win back-to-back titles and his first championship in Tokyo this year.

Hakuho (2-1) never got a belt grip on his opponent and stumbled about before having to rely on a last-ditch leg trip to send winless Tamanoshima down to the dirt.

Hakuho won his career first title in May and impressed with a 13-2 record at the Nagoya meet in July, but thus far appears to lack focus after suffering a first-day loss to Kisenosato. He could get the nod for promotion by notching 13 or more wins.

Chiyotaikai (2-1) was manhandled by Georgian komusubi Kokkai (2-1), who surprised the ozeki with a furious thrusting attack before shoving him hard into the ringside seats to mark his second giant-killing act after beating ozeki Kaio on Monday.



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