Rising sumo star Onosato offered an apology Wednesday for drinking alcohol with an underage fellow Nishonoseki-stable wrestler, two days after he was reprimanded over the September incident.

Sumo wrestler Onosato speaks to reporters outside Tokyo's Ryogoku Kokugikan on April 24, 2024. (Kyodo)

"I'm really sorry to have caused so much trouble," Onosato told reporters. On Monday, the Japan Sumo Association handed the 23-year-old and his stablemaster, former yokozuna Kisenosato, stern warnings over the incident that took place within the stable in Ibaraki Prefecture.

Regarded as one of the sport's top prospects, Onosato posted back-to-back 11-4 records and vied for the championship in January and March in his first two grand tournaments in the elite makuuchi division.

He is currently taking part in the JSA's regional tour that runs through Sunday.

"I'm just grateful to have been allowed to wrestle for the final four days," Onosato said at Tokyo's Ryogoku Kokugikan before the tour left for Kisarazu in Chiba Prefecture, east of the capital.

"I'll take a hard look in the mirror and do my best."

The former amateur standout reached sumo's top flight after only four meets, one of the fastest ascents in the modern era. His strong showing in March is set to earn him promotion into the three "sanyaku" ranks below yokozuna for May's Summer Grand Sumo Tournament.

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