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Ash Ketchum

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===={{series|Diamond & Pearl}}====
[[File:Ash arriving in Sinnoh.png|thumb|220px|left|Ash arriving in Sinnoh]]
Following Ash's victory over the Battle Frontier, May set her sights on [[Pokémon Contest]]s in the Johto region and traveled there while Max returned home to Petalburg City in Hoenn. After encountering and battling his old rival, Gary (who has now become a Pokémon researcher), and learning of a new region with new Pokémon, Ash decided to leave for the [[Sinnoh]] region to earn the Gym Badges available there. Like before, he took only Pikachu with him at first but brought his {{AP|Aipom}} along when she snuck onto the ship Ash was leaving on. While Brock did not directly accompany Ash to Sinnoh, he did meet with him while there and traveled with him through Sinnoh as he had for Kanto, Johto, and Hoenn. This time, they were accompanied by another aspiring [[Pokémon Coordinator]] named {{an|Dawn}}. Ash enthusiastically supported Dawn in her endeavors to become a Top Coordinator. Unlike May, he watched all of Dawn's Contests without being distracted by the need to train. Just as he supported Dawn in her Contests, she supported him in his Gym battles. She would even go as far as dressing up as a cheerleader with her Pokémon sometimes and cheer for him.
While traveling through Sinnoh, Ash formed a heated rivalry with a Trainer named [[Paul]]. Throughout Ash's journey, Paul would constantly put him down and the two often argued over their nearly opposite training styles. While Paul was harsh, distant, and sometimes plain cruel to his Pokémon, Ash insisted that the best way to raise Pokémon was through patience, caring, and friendship. Their rivalry came to a head after they competed in a [[Multi Battle|Tag Battle]] [[Hearthome City Tag Battle Competition|Tournament]] together, when Paul released his {{AP|Chimchar}} after it failed to meet his expectations. Ash then decided to take in the Chimp Pokémon and promised to make it strong using his philosophy. Although Ash always considered himself on par with him, Paul often bested him in battles as his Pokémon were very powerful, only keeping Pokémon that were naturally very strong. Ash's Pokémon, while strong in their own right, did not yet equal. This came to a devastating defeat at [[Lake Acuity]] for Ash, losing a Full Battle while only knocking out two of Paul's Pokémon. Ash recognized that he had to take Paul more seriously and cautiously in the future.
[[File:Ash Wallace Cup.png|thumb|left|220px|Ash in the Wallace Cup]]
[[File:Hearthome Collection Ash.png|thumb|220px|left|Ash in the Hearthome Collection]]
While in Sinnoh, Ash competed in two Pokémon Contests, once in [[Jubilife City]] and a second time in the [[Wallace Cup]] upon [[Wallace]]'s recommendation. He also competed against several [[Pokémon Stylist]]s in the [[Hearthome Collection]] fashion show in ''[[DP086|Arriving in Style!]]'', where he ended up in third place, winning the Unique Award for his original performance.
[[File:Ash and Pokémon captured.png|thumb|left|250px|Ash and his Pokémon captured by Team Flare]]
During the closing ceremony of the conference, Team Flare began their final operation, using the power of the blue {{p|Zygarde}} {{DL|List of Pokémon with form differences|Zygarde|Core}} [[Z2]] to cause massive roots to destroy parts of Lumiose City. Ash and his Pokémon were ultimately abducted by Team Flare andas they were taken captive at the top of Prism Tower, as [[Lysandre]] intended to use Ash and Greninja's Bond Phenomenon for his plans, even using Ash's other Pokémon as hostages to ensure their cooperation, by using Team Flare's Mega Evolution energy ray to control them. AfterHowever, talkingthrough somehearing sensePikachu's into Alainvoice, Ash resisted the machine's influence. andAfter talking some sense into Alain, Ash broke free captivity by using Bond Phenomenon. Ash and Alain soon engaged in a battle against Lysandre, and ultimately managed to defeat him. When Ash later heard about the [[Giant Rock]], he met up with the rest to combat it. Thanks to everyone's combined effort, [[Chespie]] was saved from the Giant Rock. Squishy and Z2 ultimately destroyed the creature, before the two Zygarde left.
Following the crisis, Ash helped Alain and Serena resolve their issues and bade farewell to his rivals. Later, after dropping Goodra off at the wetlands again, the group came across [[Xerosic]], one of Team Flare's Scientists. Ash, his Greninja, and his friends and the gang were ultimately able to foil Xerosic's plans and hand him over to Officer Jenny. The group soon reunited with Squishy and Z2, who requested Greninja's help to obliterate the remaining negative energy left by Team Flare's crisis. Knowing this was for the sake of Kalos, Ash bade farewell to Greninja before Greninja left with the two Zygarde. After releasing Greninja, Ash and the gang headed back to Lumiose City to say their final goodbyes. After bidding farewell to Serena, who headed for Hoenn, Ash separated from Clemont and Bonnie as well and returned to Pallet Town.
One day, Ash was entrusted to take care of a {{p|Cosmog}} by {{p|Solgaleo}} and {{p|Lunala}}, which he saw in a dream. The Cosmog, nicknamed {{DL|Light trio (anime)|Solgaleo|Nebby}} by Lillie, took a liking to Ash and frequently caused trouble with its ability to {{m|teleport}} people around. In ''[[SM050|Faba's Revenge!]]'', {{an|Faba}} kidnapped Nebby while Ash's attention was elsewhere. When Ash and Lillie learned about this, they enlisted Gladion and {{an|Lusamine}} in helping them rescue it. When the four found Faba, they also found that he successfully forced Nebby to summon a {{DL|Ultra Beasts (anime)|Nihilego}} from an Ultra Wormhole. After Nihilego kidnapped Lusamine and retreated into the Ultra Wormhole, Ash discovered that the incident caused Nebby to evolve into a {{p|Cosmoem}}.
[[File:Ash and Z-Power Ring.png|thumb|left|250px|Ash and his Z-Power Ring]]
Ash, his classmates, and Gladion then watched as the {{an|guardian deities}} helped Nebby evolve into the Legendary Pokémon Solgaleo and upgrade Ash's Z-Ring into a [[Z-Power Ring]]. With a [[Solganium Z]] he received from Nebby, Ash activated Solgaleo's Z-Move, {{m|Searing Sunraze Smash}}, and had Nebby opened up an Ultra Wormhole, allowing everyone to traverse through Ultra Space on Nebby's back. There, after Ash's Electrium Z temporarily transformed into a [[Pikashunium Z]], Ash and Pikachu used it to launch a {{m|10,000,000 Volt Thunderbolt}}. The attack defeated Nihilego, weakening it long enough for Lillie and Gladion to pull their mother free from its hold. The Pikashunium Z then reverted to an Electrium Z. With their mission finished, Lusamine was taken back through the Ultra Wormhole to the Altar of the Sunne.
[[File:Ash Ultra Guardian outfit.png|thumb|250px|left|Ash in his Ultra Guardian uniform]]
During Kukui's and burnet's wedding reception in the aftermath of the incident, Ash and his friends were invited to join an {{an|Ultra Beasts|Ultra Beast}} response task force, known as the [[Ultra Guardians]], which they all agreed to. On their first mission, Ash and his classmates were assigned to capture a {{DL|Ultra Beasts (anime)|Buzzwole}} that had appeared through an Ultra Wormhole. The Ultra Guardians encountered it at [[Mahalo Trail]], where Ash eventually realized it preferred flexing to battling. As a result, Ash and Kiawe distracted it long enough for the former to throw a [[Beast Ball]] at it, successfully capturing it. Later, Buzzwole was brought to [[Melemele Meadow]], where [[Professor Burnet]] temporarily opened a new wormhole, allowing Buzzwole to return home.
Later, Ash and his classmates arrived on Poni Island for their research projects for school. Ash's project was to have a grand trial battle. In ''[[SM109|A Grand Debut!]]'', Ash battled the newly-appointed Island Kahuna [[Hapu]] in a one-on-one battle and won. Letting Pikachu choose their reward for the completion, Ash received a [[Steelium Z]].
[[File:Ash Champion.png|thumb|left|250px|Ash after winning the Manalo Conference]]
Following this victory, Ash entered the first-ever [[Manalo Conference]], along with his classmates. He eventually made it to the semifinals, where he faced off against the [[Team Skull]] Boss [[Guzma]]. After a tough match, Ash was able to defeat him and advance to the finals, where he was set to face Gladion. On the night before the final battle, Ash's {{p|Meltan}} fused with {{DL|Recurring wild Pokémon in the anime|Melmetal|its fellow Meltan}}, evolving into {{AP|Melmetal}}, which Ash ended up using as his first Pokémon in the finals. The match eventually resulted in a battle between the two Trainers' {{p|Lycanroc}}, with [[Ash's Lycanroc]] eventually emerging victorious, thus earning Ash the title of Alola League {{pkmn|Champion}}.
====[[New series]]====
[[File:Ash goal SS.png|thumb|250px|left|Ash's goal of battling Leon]]
Sometime after his return to Kanto, Ash joined Professor Oak in attending the opening of the new [[Sakuragi Institute]] in [[Vermilion City]]. During the opening ceremony, the head of the institute, [[Professor Sakuragi]], informed the attendees that a rare Pokémon would be appearing at the local port shortly. Ash eagerly rushed over there and found out the rare Pokémon was a Lugia. During this encounter, he also met a boy named {{an|Go}}, and the two shared a ride with Lugia throughout Kanto. When they later returned to the Sakuragi Institute, Professor Sakuragi was amazed by the information they had gathered about Lugia, and he asked them to become his [[Professors' aides|research assistants]]. They accepted the offer and were provided with their own room to stay in. Delia also left Mimey at the institute to take care of Ash while he stayed there.
[[File:Ash Dynamax Band.png|thumb|250px|Ash's Dynamax Band]]
Later, Ash and Go traveled to the [[Galar]] region to watch the finals of the [[World Championships|Pokémon World Championships]]. The match ended in the victory of Galar's undefeated Champion [[Leon]], thus making him the World Champion. Inspired by this, Ash decided he wanted to battle Leon himself. However, before he could challenge him, a [[Gigantamax]] {{p|Drednaw}} went on a rampage and started causing havoc. While Ash and Go battled it, Pikachu ended up Gigantamaxing as well, therefore giving him enough power to defeat Drednaw. Leon, impressed by Ash's performance, accepted his challenge to a battle. After he lost, Ash decided to take part in the Pokémon World Championships as well and climb through its ranks to one day challenge Leon again.
Perhaps one of Ash's greatest rivalries was against [[Paul]] during his time in the [[Sinnoh]] region. On the contrary of Ash, who strongly believed in the [[Friendship|bond between Trainer and Pokémon]], Paul's only concern was with a Pokémon's strength, believing that bonding only caused them to become spoiled and unmotivated. Due to this, aside from winning the [[Sinnoh League]], Ash's biggest goal during his Sinnoh travels was to ultimately change Paul's mindset and have the latter finally acknowledge him as a Trainer worth of his attention. After a long and exhausting journey, he finally managed to accomplish this after defeating Paul at the [[Lily of the Valley Conference]], after which Paul finally recognized Ash as his rival and equal.
In most episodes of the anime, especially those during the {{DL|List of original series episodes|Johto League arc}}, Ash befriends someone who will influence him and cause him to strive to become a better Trainer. Although he is not a dependent individual, he is still young and has learned to make his way relying on his friends, particularly the maternal skills of {{an|Brock}}. The honor of "best friend" is usually reserved for Pikachu, but Ash has come to see his closest human friends in the same light over time; using the term for {{an|Misty}} and Brock in ''[[EP273|Gotta Catch Ya Later!]]'' as well as {{an|May}} and [[Max]] in ''[[AG178|Battling the Enemy Within]]''. Also, Ash even has a sibling like relationship with his companions and is a role model towards some of them, mainly with May, Dawn, Serena, Lillie, and Go.
Ash has changed a great deal throughout the series, particularly in regards to his skill at [[Pokémon training]], but his earnestness, rashness, and determination have remained. Never straying from his goal, he has remained loyal to his friends, family, and supporters, but most of all his Pokémon. Ash became a great Trainer by learning to find and use the inner strength of each of his Pokémon by bonding with them. For example, when he received a banner filled with prints from his Pokémon in ''[[AG187|The Unbeatable Lightness of Seeing!]]'', he knew which Pokémon placed specific prints, showing his close bond with them. He also learns where their hidden abilities lie, as well as resorting to unorthodox strategies when fighting particularly challenging opponents. For example, he uses his Pikachu's speed to outmaneuver larger foes and attack. In another instance, his {{AP|Charizard}} defeated [[Gary's Blastoise]] by causing the field to overheat before mounting a close-quarters attack while Blastoise was blinded by the steam. He also prefers to train a Pokémon to be the best it can without forcing it to [[Evolution|evolve]], as evidenced by his treatment of {{AP|Gligar}} in ''[[DP085|Fighting Fear With Fear!]]''. He is happy when his Pokémon evolve but lets them choose whether or not they want to evolve instead of forcing them. However, due to his close bond with his Pokémon, Ash fears for their safety as he doesn't want anything to happen to them and would choose their well being over his own.
[[File:Ash catches a Pokémon SM.png|thumb|left|250px|Ash after catching a Pokémon]]