Rank-and-filer Abi defeated Takayasu and Takakeisho in the playoff to secure the title. It was the first three-way playoff since March 1994.
Mongolian grappler Hoshoryu used an impressive arm throw to fend off sumo's Flying Monkey, improving to 7-1 in the year's final tournament.
Making his debut at the komusubi rank, Tobizaru put on an impressive display of sumo for an opening-day win.
Veteran grappler Tamawashi will have his hands full as he bids for a second straight Emperor's Cup at the 15-day meet in Fukuoka.
The lone yokozuna won his second straight tournament at the sport's highest rank.
The Mongolian grand champion won his second straight title at the sport's highest rank.
Takakeisho remains tied for the lead with Terunofuji, who coasted to an easy win over Endo.
The Mongolian grappler is eager to prove he is a dominant force to be reckoned with as a lone yokozuna.