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H A W A I I _ S U M O T O R I

Sumo
Kyodo News Service

Wednesday, March 17, 1999

Yokozuna pair fall,
Chiyotaikai wins 1st
at Spring tourney

OSAKA -- Yokozuna brothers Takanohana and Wakanohana both flopped Wednesday, but Chiyotaikai bounced back from an 0-3 start to grab his first win as an ozeki on the fourth day of the Spring Grand Sumo Tournament.

Hawaiian-born giant Musashimaru wasted no time swatting out No. 3 maegashira Terao, 1-3, to record his third win, while fellow ozeki Takanonami improved to the same 3-1 mark with a fortuitous win over top-ranked maegashira Kotonishiki, who fell to 1-3.

Takanohana, who began the day in a two-way tie for the lead at 3-0 with No. 9 maegashira Chiyotenzan, looked sluggish against second-ranked Tosanoumi and put up relatively little resistance as he was barged out to the delight of a packed crowd at Osaka Prefectural Gymnasium.

Improving to 2-2 in the 15-day meet, Tosanoumi got off a fierce opening salvo to keep his opponent off balance and quickly finished the job after skillfully avoiding a last-ditch counter maneuver by Takanohana, who looked anything but a wrestler with 20 Emperor's Cups in his trophy cabinet.

Takanohana's loss left Chiyotenzan in sole possession of the lead at 4-0 after an easy win over No. 11 maegashira Oginishiki.

Meanwhile, Wakanohana slumped to his third straight defeat after losing a game of cat and mouse with Mongolian Kyokushuzan, who upped his record to 3-1.

Spotting that the yokozuna had come in too low, third-ranked maegashira Kyokushuzan dragged his surprised opponent to the dirt and then gave a nod of satisfaction for his second career win over a grand champion.

Chiyotaikai, who was promoted to sumo's second highest rank after lifting his first Emperor's Cup at the New Year meet, finally stopped the rot with a straightforward win over Shikishima, 1-3, blasting out the No. 2 maegashira to earn the biggest cheer of the day from the Osaka crowd.

Meanwhile, komusubi Kaio boosted his record to 3-1 by running out sekiwake Kotonowaka, 1-3, in an ugly bout.

In a battle of komusubi, Tochiazuma posted his third victory by shoving out Dejima, 2-2, while Futagoyama veteran Akinoshima -- fighting at the same komusubi rank -- got the better of fourth-ranked Higonoumi, 1-3, to up his record to 3-1.

Rising star Miyabiyama rebounded from a third-day loss to win a slap-fest with eighth-ranked Aogiyama, 2-2, giving the No. 7 maegashira his third win of the tourney.



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