Tongan Ex - Wrestler Retains Sign Of Asahiyama Sumo Stable


Tongan ex-wrestler retains sign of Asahiyama sumo stableThe Kingdom of Tonga in the South Pacific is home to one of the more unusual stables in sumo, Japan's traditional national sport.
Without any wrestlers, and marked by a large wooden sign reading "Asahiyama-beya," the stable is home to Tevita Vaiola Falevai, 60, one of four Tongan men sent to Japan more than 40 years ago by king Taufa'ahau Tupou IV (1918-2006) in an ultimately unsuccessful bid to make sumo Tonga's second national sport after rugby.

The four, who were among youths who received coaching from the Asahiyama stable during a sumo demonstration in Tonga, flew to Japan and joined the stable in October 1974.