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Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Hakuho marches on

OSAKA (Kyodo) Hakuho enjoyed another easy day at the office Tuesday as the lone yokozuna tore down veteran maegashira Wakanosato to preserve his unbeaten start to the Spring Grand Sumo Tournament.

Hakuho barely broke sweat in the day's final bout at Osaka Prefectural Gymnasium, the Mongolian bruiser quickly wrapping up former sekiwake Wakanosato (0-3) to make it three wins out of three.

With former yokozuna Asashoryu having retired last month amid allegations that he attacked a man during an alcohol-fueled rage outside a Tokyo nightspot, Hakuho is the odds-on favorite to win the spring basho and his 13th Emperor's Cup.

Meanwhile, Baruto produced an imperious display to see off komusubi Kisenosato with a series of well-placed thrusts to also stay perfect.

The Estonian sekiwake was never threatened and dispatched Kisenosato (1-2) with maximum efficiency to register the third of 13 wins he needs to be considered for promotion to sumo's second-highest rank of ozeki.

In other bouts in the upper echelons of the elite makuuchi division, Kotooshu (2-1) showed brute strength as the Bulgarian ozeki muscled out second-ranked Kyokutenho (0-3) to rebound from Monday's surprise defeat to Aminishiki.

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