The Yomiuri ShimbunYokozuna Kisenosato will not participate in the Spring Grand Sumo Tournament set to begin on Sunday because of persistent delays in his recovery from numerous ailments, his stable master Tagonoura said Thursday.
The yokozuna, 31, has been suffering from injuries since suffering damage to the left shoulder area during a match at last year’s Spring tournament — his debut basho as a yokozuna — and the upcoming tournament will be the sixth straight withdrawal or absence.
The yokozuna was hoping to compete in the upcoming Spring tourney after he had pulled out of the New Year Grand Sumo Tournament in January because he had sustained a muscle injury in his left chest.
Kisenosato, however, could not push himself during training to be fit for the tournament.
“He has been unable to perform in training the way he would like. I want him to concentrate on his medical treatment,” the stable master said.
Since the six-basho-per-year system was implemented, Kisenosato’s withdrawal/absence is the second-longest such streak behind Takanohana, who missed seven consecutive tourneys.
The last time a yokozuna withdrew from all or parts of six consecutive bashos was when Musashimaru pulled out or was absent between the Kyushu Grand Sumo Tournament in 2002 and the Autumn tournament in 2003.Speech