TOKYO (TR) – The Japan Sumo Association on Monday asked stablemaster Tokitsukaze to retire for violating protocols for the coronavirus pandemic in place during a match, reports Nippon News Network (Feb. 22).
In January, Tokitsukaze, 47, visited fuzoku (commercial sex), massage and mahjong parlors during the New Year Grand Tournament, which is a violation of the association’s guidelines that seek to reduce the spread of infection.
The JSA’s board of directors came to the decision after the association’s compliance committee investigated the matter.
The punishment is the second-most severe possible by the association, following dismissal. Tokitsukaze will honor the request.
Tokitsukaze’s real name is Masahiro Sakamoto. This was his second transgression. Last year, he was demoted two ranks for playing golf in Miyagi Prefecture.
The board also said that coach Magaki will replace Tokitsukaze at the stable in Sumida Ward. Ozeki Shodai is among the wrestlers in the stable.