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Former professional sumo wrestler Kaido Höövelson joins Centre Party

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Höövelson with Prime Minister Jüri Ratas, 7 September 2018.
Höövelson with Prime Minister Jüri Ratas, 7 September 2018. Source: Siim Lõvi/ERR

The Centre Party announced on Friday that their latest member is former sumo wrestler and businessman Kaido Höövelson, also known as Baruto. Höövelson was recently made a member of investment agency Enterprise Estonia's supervisory board, and told ERR's Estonian news already in June this year that he is considering running for parliament next year.

"If I can be useful in some way, if I'm interested and if I have the will to do it, nothing is impossible," Höövelson said back then, and added that if he will run, it would definitely be in Lääne-Viru County.

At a press conference with Höövelson on Friday, Centre Party chairman and Prime Minister Jüri Ratas expressed the hope that Höövelson's experience in Japan could help him do his part to open up new business opportunities for Estonian companies there should he become an MP.

Höövelson's sumo wrestling career in Japan began in 2004. He reached the sport's top division in just two years. In January 2012, he competed in the division's championship. One of only two Estonians in professional sumo wrestling in Japan, Höövelson was recognised on various occasions for his fighting spirit, performance and technique.

He retired from the sport at age 28 in 2013 after a series of injuries and related issues. He has since been involved in different business ventures in Estonia, in mixed martial arts, and also tried acting.

Editor: Dario Cavegn

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