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Ash Ketchum

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===={{series|Diamond & Pearl}}====
[[File:Ash arriving in Sinnoh.png|thumb|left|220px|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|left|220px|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.
 
 
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|left|250px|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}}.
 
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