The Japan Sumo Association's tie-up with the world's biggest video game franchise could be a big step in attracting younger fans to the sport.
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Anything other than a third straight championship for the Isegahama stable man at the upcoming January tournament would be a surprise.
Fears surrounding COVID-19 aren’t the only thing unchanged from 2021, as it looks to be another Terunofuji-dominated year.
Terunofuji’s dominance is unlikely to be seriously challenged in 2022, but given his age and injury history it’s possible we could start to see pretenders to his throne.
The past 12 months have been extremely challenging both inside and outside the ring, but sumo’s highest highs and lowest lows of 2021 all occurred on the clay.
Sunday's action at Ryogoku Kokugikan featured not only talented wrestlers with promising futures, but an upbeat atmosphere that hinted at a promising 2022 for the sport.
Just years removed from the unpaid ranks, the 30-year-old is on the path to becoming one of the most successful foreign-born grand champions in the sport's history.
As the lone yokozuna attempts to wrap up his sixth Emperor's Cup in Fukuoka, this weekend's amateur championships may feature some of his potential successors.
Despite the ongoing meet's seeming openness, there is a sense of inevitability about proceedings in Fukuoka that appears to be draining some of the energy out of the event.
With Hakuho retired, the Isegahama stable man has a golden chance to cement his own legacy.