Kisenosato had to contend with a last-second parry from Arawashi (3-9), but the new yokozuna held his now-familiar composure, leaning in to force the No. 4 Mongolian maegashira down at Edion Arena Osaka.

Ozeki Terunofuji rode his luck against Endo (6-6), who make a bright start reacting well to a slap from the Mongolian. The fifth-ranked maegashira snatched a double-handed underarm belt hold and had the ozeki teetering on the edge after the early exchanges.

But the sheer size difference kept Terunofuji in the contest, with the injury-plagued wrestler regaining ground and tripping up Endo with a knee before putting him to the dirt.

Yokozuna Harumafuji (9-3) might be out of title contention here but was at his best to hand Kisenosato's Tagonoura stablemate Takayasu his second defeat of the meet.

After charging in low, the Mongolian showed nimble footwork to get on the side of the sekiwake and give his opponent no time to breathe, flooring him after scooping up a thigh.

No. 10 maegashira Tochiozan (10-2) also took a step back from the Kisenosato-trailing pack after getting grappled out by 14th-ranked Myogiryu (6-6).

Yokozuna Kakuryu suffered his fourth defeat, unable to evade a powerful push from Tamawashi (6-6) as the sekiwake beat his Mongolian compatriot for the second tourney in a row.

Sekiwake Kotoshogiku fell to a slap down from No. 3 maegashira Takarafuji (6-6) for his fifth defeat, and will now have to win all his remaining three bouts to secure an immediate return to ozeki rank.