Fifth-ranked maegashira Iwakiyama has been forced to withdraw from the upcoming Summer Grand Sumo Tournament after he revealed Wednesday he suffered a minor stroke.
Iwakiyama, diagnosed at a Tokyo hospital earlier this month, was told by doctors not to wrestle on the raised ring after undergoing further tests in Osaka on Wednesday but he will not need to be hospitalized or undergo surgery.
The 34-year-old Sakaigawa stable wrestler wants to focus on treatment and recovery and has no plans to retire.
“I want to be able to get up onto the dohyo (ring) again,” said Iwakiyama. “I want to wrestle as long as my body allows me to.”
Former ozeki Tochiazuma suffered a mild stroke and retired at 30 years old in May 2007, saying health concerns had robbed him of the morale to continue with his career.