Japan

Scandals Ruining Sumo Wrestling

Popularity waning due to gambling and match-fixing incidents, not to mention the strict lifestyle requirements

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Japan's tradition-steeped sport of sumo is wringing its collective hands after receiving a record-low number of applications from would-be wrestlers.

Just one youngster put his name forward before the season-ending tournament in Fukuoka on Wednesday, with one established wrestler saying he understood why so few people wanted to undergo the hardships of sumo training.

The sport's managers said the lone application took the total number this year to just 56.