Takakeisho Claims New Year Grand Sumo Title

Takakeisho Claims New Year Grand Sumo Title
Takakeisho won a final day showdown over Kotoshoho to capture the New Year Grand Sumo tournament in Tokyo, Sunday. The highest ranked wrestler in the field and the only one from sumo's top two ranks, Takakeisho started the tournament strong going 9-1 before losing two straight bouts. He won on Saturday, though, to tie Kotoshoho for the lead at 11-3 going into the final day's matches.

Known for his pushing and thrusting techniques, Takakeisho exploded out of the box driving into Kotoshoho but quickly shifted gears seizing an underhook on his opponent's right side and executing a beautiful arm throw for the win. It was his first title since 2020 and third overall, which may merit consideration of promotion to sumo's highest rank, yokozuna.

Currently, Takakeisho is the only holder of ozeki, the sport's second highest rank. Terunofuji, sumo's only reigning yokozuna, missed the New Year tournament recovering from double knee surgery. It was the third straight tournament he's missed all or part of.

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