ULAN BATOR – Yokozuna Hakuho, who set the record for most career championships by winning his 33rd Emperor’s Cup at the New Year Sumo Tournament in January, received the equivalent of Japan’s People’s Honor Award in Mongolia on Tuesday.
The 29-year-old Hakuho, whose birth name is Munkhbat Davaajargal, had the award for heroic achievements bestowed upon him by Mongolian President Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj at the government office.
“You have achieved a historic record in professional sumo and raised the honor of Mongolia,” Elbegdorj said.
Hakuho’s father, Jigjid Munkhbat, 73, was a recipient of the same accolade in the past for his achievements in Mongolian sumo while former yokozuna Asashoryu, 34, also received the honor.
“My father was a great yokozuna of the 20th century. I am a great yokozuna of the 21st century,” said Hakuho.
Yokozuna Kakuryu, 29, who is also from Mongolia, received a merit award for athletes.