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Monday, July 25, 2011

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No holding back: Harumafuji enjoys the spotlight after his Emperor's Cup victory on Sunday in Nagoya. KYODO

Kisenosato defeats champ on final day

Kyodo

NAGOYA — Kisenosato rained on ozeki Harumafuji's victory parade while yokozuna Hakuho was sent to a shocking third defeat at the hands of Baruto on the final day of the Nagoya Grand Sumo Tournament on Sunday.

With his career second title already locked up after beating Hakuho on Saturday, Harumafuji was hoping to complete his campaign with an undefeated record, but it was not to be.

The Mongolian ozeki got a slow jump at the face-off against Kisenosato and was almost immediately sent retreating out at Aichi Prefectural Gymnasium.

But Harumafuji quickly recovered, getting his left hand inside for a firm belt grip and put the sekiwake on the back foot, before Kisenosato (10-5) found a way to toss him down at the last second, leaving Harumafuji at 14-1.

"I fought through injuries and got lots of support from my fans," Harumafuji said. "Today I lost but he was a good opponent. I will do my best at the next tournament."

In the finale, all the dominoes came tumbling down for Hakuho, who let Baruto (11-4) inside for a belt grip out of the blocks and was later sent over the edge with an overarm throw.

The lone yokozuna who had been seeking an unprecedented eight consecutive title, appears to have lost his zeal after being the poster boy for sumo so long during its spate of crises, including a match-fixing scandal that broke in February.

Mongolian Kakuryu (10-5) got both arms wrapped around Aran (10-5) before lifting the Russian wrestler out to post double-digit wins.

Probably the biggest story of the 15-day meet was the retirement of Kaio, the last remaining Japanese ozeki, after he surpassed former yokozuna Chiyonofuji to become the all-time career wins leader with 1,046 victories.



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