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January 2008 Grand SUMO Tournament Winner HAKUHO ASASHORYU..

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  • January 2008 Grand SUMO Tournament Winner HAKUHO ASASHORYU..

    Mongolian champ Hakuho beats controversial compatriot

    TOKYO (AFP) - Young sumo grand champion Hakuho threw down controversial rival Asashoryu Sunday in a nail-biting contest, winning the January tournament that has gripped national attention for weeks.

    Mongolian-native Hakuho, 22, who finished the tournament with 14 wins and one loss, took down his 27-year-old compatriot and fellow grand champion with a left over-arm throw to win three straight tournaments.

    The final match of the bi-monthly tournament has attracted intense national interest as mighty Asashoryu returned to the ring for the first time since being suspended in July for misconduct.

    "I went into the bout thinking only that I must not lose. That was the only thing in my mind. I am glad I was able to win the tournament," said Hakuho, whose real name is Munkhbat Davaajargal.

    "Now, my immediate next goal is to win four straight tournaments. I will do my utmost toward that goal," he said in a brief address before the roaring crowd at Ryogoku Kokugikan martial arts hall in Tokyo.

    It was the first direct face-off between two yokozuna, or grand champions, in more than five years, with both Mongolians coming to the final day with 13 wins and one loss.

    "It was my short-comings that I could not give all I got when we grappled," Asashoryu said after the bout.

    "Next tournament, I will absolutely win," he said.

    As they faced up the two wrestlers repeatedly threw fistfuls of salt on the sand ring -- a sumo ritual -- as they kept staring at each other, electrifying the crowd packing the arena.

    Sumo bouts often finish in seconds, but their fight continued for more than a minute, with Asashoryu at one point lifting up the bulldozing Hakuho, before the junior yokozuna threw down his rival.

    Despite losing, Asashoryu showed little ring-rustiness.

    "It was excellent sumo, filled with energy and strength. Fans liked it," said Kitanoumi, the sumo association's president and a former grand champion.

    "I think Asashoryu is back. But his real comeback can only be proven by winning a tournament," he told the Japan Broadcasting Corporation (NHK).

    Hakuho was promoted to grand champion in May and has enjoyed a better image -- quiet and polite -- among Japanese fans than Asashoryu, 27, whose real name is Dolgorsuren Dagvadorj.

    Asashoryu, who had a meteoric rise to the top rank in 2002, was suspended from bouts last year for skipping a provincial exhibition tour citing injuries but then being caught on camera cheerfully playing a charity football match in Mongolia.

    He went back to his homeland in late August citing a need for treatment of what was described by his doctors as depression.

    Asashoryu, the fifth-ranked wrestler in the history of the ancient sport, returned to Japan from Mongolia on November 30 and delivered a sombre apology for the controversy he caused.

    The wrestler has long struggled to win over sumo traditionalists, who accuse him of being too abrasive and disrespecting the ritualistic sport's strict code of conduct.

    The next tournament will be in March.
    I'm looking forward to it.


    There are other matches on youtube between these two that are also very good and worth the look.

  • #2
    since when did sumo wrestlers learn how to breastfeed?
    "Life is a run. In attack we run, in defense we run. When you can no longer run, time to die" - Shichiroji "Seven samurai"


    • #3
      check out "mr. if you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all!!" lol.... pretty intelligent....



      • #4
        seriously though, i wonder what those guys eat and do to get so freakin big.
        "Life is a run. In attack we run, in defense we run. When you can no longer run, time to die" - Shichiroji "Seven samurai"


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