Between July 9 and 23, the Nagoya Grand Sumo Tournament was held in Nagoya, central Japan.

The meet was held at the Aichi Prefectural Gymnasium, and saw four grand champions and three ozeki face off for the first time since the spring meet in 2000.

Kyodo News photographers sought to capture some of the more eye-catching moments before and during the competition.

GALLERY: Scenes of sumo - Nagoya Grand Sumo Tournament, Part 1

GALLERY: Scenes of sumo - Nagoya Grand Sumo Tournament, Part 2

Kotoshogiku arches backward ahead of a bout on July 12, 2017.

Egypt's Osunaarashi focuses ahead of a bout. His ring name means "great sandstorm."

Amakaze slaps his face to psych himself up ahead of a match on July 18.

A sumo wrestler grabs salt to toss into the ring. About 40 to 50 kilograms of salt is used per day to purify the ring and pray for the safety of the wrestlers.

Tobizaru crashes into a basket of salt after being toppled by Amakaze on July 19.

A referee (C) encourages wrestlers Shohozan (L front) and Onosho to fight harder.

Kotoshogiku closes his eyes and puts his hands together as he gets ready to fight.

Takekaze (top front) finds himself on top of a wrestler waiting for his bout after being thrown by Aoiyama during a match.

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