Sumo Star Wakanosato Retires
Former Sekiwake Wakanosato has announced his retirement from Sumo.
He made the announcement at a press conference at the Ryogoku Kokugikan flanked by Tashinoura-oyakata, his stable master.
“I joined sumo because I loved it. My intent was to fight on, but my body just can’t keep up anymore.” Wakanosato has struggled recently, finishing just 4-11 from the J11 rank in July. He waited to announce his retirement so he could still participate as an active rikishi in the summer exhibition season that traveled through his home in Aoimori Prefecture. It was announced that he will remain with the Association as Nishiiwa-oyakata and will be affiliated with his current Tashinoura stable.
Early on he gathered the reputation as a bull and gained steam as a strong fighter. Wakanosato set a record for 19 consecutive basho ranked in the sanyaku, but he was never quite able to get over the Ozeki hump due to the strength of the banzuke back in his day. His 87 basho fought in the Makuuchi division puts him at 8th place all time, and his career total wins of 914 puts him in 7th place all time.