Fans of veteran Senegalese wrestler Yakya Diop, who goes by his wrestling sobriquet Yékini, have complained of what they described as the star’s ill-timed announcement.
Yékini, 42, who began his successful wrestling career in 1996, announced last Monday that he has quit the sport but fell short of advancing any reason for his premature retirement. He had 22 combats in his career, winning 19 of them, drawing and losing another two to Balla Gaye II and Lac de Guire.
Oumar Gueye is an upcoming wrestler based in Pèkin, Senegal. He told Observer Sports in Dakar that it is surreal to see Yékini ending his career with two humiliating defeats. “He has worked so hard to become a champion; he should have fought back to regain his championship then hit the exit door,” he noted.
Gueye added that he still looks up to Yékini for the fact that his unique style of wrestling is a way that every upcoming star should adopt. “Being humiliated by Lac and Balla doesn’t imply that he cannot do the game. He made errors in both combats which he was supposed to rectify before retiring,” he explained.
Gueye finally assured that despite everything, he’s still a loyal fan of Yékini, adding that the veteran will continue to be his role model.
Mbaye Diop, a businessman in Dakar, who is also known to be one of the biggest fans of Yékini in Senegal, highlighted the importance of Yakya in the Senegalese wrestling industry. “I am a true fan of Yékini who has too much confidence in him. I wasn’t pleased upon hearing his retirement because he has ended his career at a very bad time. A superstar of his nature shouldn’t have retired closing his file with two humiliating defeats,” he stated. He urged Yékini to come back and set a remarkable record before he can finally call it quit.
Marie Bajan, a citizen of Dakar, said Yékini was expected to have won a big combat before retiring. “Honestly, he should properly look at his decision to retire. After all the breakthroughs he had registered in wrestling, this is not the way to end his career,” she said.
According to him, despite his recent defeats by Balla and Lac, Yékini is still the king of the arena. “He has done which many have not done in wrestling, so I respect him for that and still maintain my loyalty as an everlasting fan,” she promised.
by Modou Lamin Jammeh from Dakar, Senegal