Hakuho won on the opening day of the New Year Grand Sumo Tournament. The fan favourite started his pursuit for a record-extending 44th career championship, while fellow yokozuna Kakuryu suffered a shocking defeat.
Hakuho seized komusubi Daieisho’s belt with his right hand following the initial clash and easily forced the komusubi out in the final bout of the day at Tokyo’s “Ryogoku Kokugikan”.
With the win, the Mongolian-born yokozuna was able to exact revenge for a loss to Daieisho at the previous tournament in November, reminds The Japan Times. Hakuho has revealed his long-term goal of capturing 50 Emperor’s Cups.
Yokozuna Kakuryu lost to No. 1 maegashira Endo and failed to make a winning return from injuries that forced him to withdraw from two previous meets.
No. 17 Kiribayama, the tournament’s only makuuchi-division debutant, survived a scare against former sekiwake Kaisei for his first win on the elite division.
Source: The Japan Times