(ANSA) – TOKYO, 27 SEPT – The number one of Japanese Sumo, Hakuho, has decided to retire from competitive activity. The Japanese media anticipate this, citing sources with knowledge of the facts. Born in Mongolia and moved to Japan at the age of 15, the 36-year-old champion of the yokozuna class – the highest rank in the discipline – won 44 consecutive tournaments until March last year, before undergoing knee surgery and jumping. three competitions. In November the National Council of the highest category had presented a verbal warning to the wrestler for the long absence, considered the most serious level of notification, and which precedes the recommendation to withdraw from the sport. Returning to fight in July, in the Nagoya Grand Tournament, Hakuho won the competition with the record of 15 consecutive victories, before the new stop of the main events of the circuit, due to the health emergency caused by the coronavirus. The Mongolian giant himself, 1.92 tall and weighing 155 kilograms, had tested positive for Covid at the beginning of the year, a few days before the Tokyo Grand Tournament.
With Hakuho’s retirement, only one wrestler from the yokozuna class remains, compatriot Terunofuji, winner of the most recent Autumn tournament at the historic Ryogoku Kokugikan arena in the capital. Sumo is Japan’s national sport, and its origins date back to the early sixth century. In addition to being a combat sport, the discipline is considered a true form of art, from the propitiatory rituals performed to the presentation of the wrestlers, to the large number of ceremonials performed before the fights. (HANDLE).
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