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Thursday, May 10, 2012

Ozeki Kisenosato wins to stay among leaders


Ozeki Kisenosato outlasted Gagamaru to maintain his share of the lead, while yokozuna Hakuho stayed in touch with the early pacesetters with a third win at the Summer Grand Sumo Tournament on Wednesday.

Kisenosato had to dig deep into his energy reserves but still had too much gumption for the Georgian No. 2 maegashira, forcing him over the straw bales to preserve his prefect start. Gagamaru dropped to 1-3.

Kisenosato, fellow ozeki Kotoshogiku and three lower-ranked wrestlers improved to 4-0 on a day when Estonian Baruto was the only one among the six ozeki to bite the dust at Ryogoku Kokugikan.

Hakuho, who lost his opening bout on Sunday, slapped down No. 2 maegashira Myogiryu (1-3) to take another step toward his 23rd Emperor's Cup.

Baruto (3-1), though, returned to the locker room shaking his head after getting mugged at the edge of the ring by Aminishiki (2-2), who prevailed with a pulling overarm throw to claim his second major scalp after opening the meet with an upset win over Hakuho.

"I was able to get a quick attack going. It's a nice feeling (to beat both Hakuho and Baruto)," said Aminishiki. "I just have to keep on giving it my best shot."

Harumafuji (3-1) showed nifty footwork and toppled top-ranked Takayasu (0-4) with a textbook "kotenage" armlock throw and fellow Mongolian Kakuryu (3-1) finally dismantled Toyonoshima (2-2) after an entertaining slugfest in the next bout.

Kakuryu who flirted with a championship at the spring tourney in March before losing to yokozuna Hakuho in a playoff, is fighting in his first tournament as ozeki. He is the first wrestler to attain the rank since Kisenosato secured promotion at the Kyushu basho last November.

Ozeki Kotooshu (2-2) returned to winning ways after back-to-back defeats against Goeido and Toyohibiki, the Bulgarian getting a firm grip on the front of winless Takekaze's mawashi and charging him out of the dohyo.

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