translated by Brett Larner
Sumo grand champion Hakuho has withdrawn from his planned appearance as guest starter at the 45th anniversary Ome 30 km on Feb. 20. On Feb. 7 the National Sumo Federation issued a statement that members belonging to the federation would be voluntarily pulling out of all external events and activities, leading to Hakuho's withdrawal. Race organizers subsequently made the public announcement of the news.
Translator's note: Although the original article doesn't explicitly mention it, Hakuho's withdrawal is fallout from the suspension of the spring sumo tournament in the wake of a current match-rigging scandal purportedly involving three lower-ranking sumo wrestlers.