In a story that seems strange in passing, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has challenged Russian President and judo enthusiast Vladimir Putin to throw down on the mat with Olympic gold medalist Yasuhiro Yamashita in the homeland of the martial art, Japan.
When speaking to Yamashita at an Asia economic forum, Abe said he would love to see the judo master face off with Putin and Mongolian President Khaltmaagiin Battulga (also a judo enthusiast)in an exhibition. Going as far to say…
“Yamashita-san, can you not invite the two presidents with black belts to Japan, via the Japanese judo federation? That way Mr. Yamashita and the two presidents could show us some training moves.”
Putin has showcased his love of judo multiple times over the past year, including the Russian president releasing his own judo instructional video, in which he explains the philosophy of the martial art and talks through the fundamental holds and techniques.
Original Story: Newsweek