Japan U-turn on World Classic boycott

Two-time champions Japan said Tuesday they would defend their World Baseball Classic (WBC) title next year, reversing an earlier decision to boycott the premier international event over a revenue-sharing row.

"All the players decided today to withdraw our resolution to stay away from the WBC," Takahiro Arai, head of Japan's national union of professional baseball players, told a news conference in Osaka.

"I believe they were not wrong from the viewpoint of the future of Japanese baseball," he said after the Japan Professional Baseball Players' Association made the decision at a meeting in the city. "I feel very proud of them."

He said some concessions had been made over the way sponsorship and licensing revenues are handled by tournament organisers WBC Inc.

Japan, nicknamed Samurai, won the inaugural 2006 edition of the tournament, which was created by US Major League Baseball (MLB) and intended to emulate the success of football's World Cup and globalise the sport.

They retained the title in 2009, the next time the contest was held.

But the union of players from Japan's 12 professional clubs resolved on July 20 to boycott the third WBC edition. The final of the tournament is scheduled for March 2013 in San Francisco.

They had demanded that Japan control all the sponsorship and licensing revenues generated by their participation in the tournament. Currently, all sponsorship and licensing revenues are pooled and distributed by the MLB-affiliated WBC Inc.

The 2009 WBC edition raked in a profit of about $18 million, about 60 percent of which reportedly came from Japanese corporate sponsors, the union said.

Of the total, 13 percent was distributed to Japanese players while 66 percent went to MLB and its players association.

But Arai said that WBC Inc. had recently assured Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB), which governs the country's professional game, that certain WBC sponsorship and licensing rights would remain in Japan.

"MLB has in general recognised the licensing scheme in Japan," he said.

The players' union said in a statement that it had been confirmed that NPB has the right to solicit sponsors for the national team and produce merchandise featuring the national team during the WBC tournament.

Yomiuri Giants manager Tatsunori Hara, who guided Japan to the 2009 championship, welcomed the players' decision to take part in the WBC.

"Many things have happened just because it is a very young tournament. It was meaningful that the players created a stir," he said.

Sadaharu Oh, Japan's manager in the inaugural tournament and their all-time home-run king, said: "I'm happy that their challenge to the world will go on."

Loading...

Editor’s note:Yahoo Philippines encourages responsible comments that add dimension to the discussion. No bashing or hate speech, please. You can express your opinion without slamming others or making derogatory remarks.

  • Sy moves up, Villar enters Forbes list of billionaires
    Sy moves up, Villar enters Forbes list of billionaires

    Eleven Filipinos are included in Forbes’ 2015 list of richest people in the world. Filipino-Chinese tycoon Henry Sy Sr. continues to be the wealthiest man in the Philippines. The 90-year-old SM supermalls, banking and property tycoon ranked 73rd among the world’s richest with an increased net worth of $14.2 billion from $11.4 billion last year. Sy’s net worth was attributed to the continued growth of his SM Investments Corp. and his more recent venture, the City of Dreams Manila resort and …

  • Jolo apologizes to Bong in visit
    Jolo apologizes to Bong in visit

    Cavite Vice Gov. Jolo Revilla wept and embraced his father as he apologized for the “accidental” shooting incident in their Ayala Alabang residence, the family’s spokesman said yesterday. Lawyer Raymund Fortun came out of the private room at the Asian Hospital and Medical Center in Muntinlupa City to speak to reporters, who were barred from entering the hospital compound during the visit of Sen. Ramon “Bong” Revilla Jr. …

  • Australian drug smugglers being taken to Indonesian island for execution - media
    Australian drug smugglers being taken to Indonesian island for execution - media

    By Jane Wardell and Beawiharta SYDNEY/DENPASAR, Indonesia (Reuters) - Two convicted Australian drug smugglers were removed from a prison in Bali on Wednesday to be taken to an Indonesian island where they will be shot by firing squad, Australian media reported. The planned executions of Myuran Sukumaran, 33, and Andrew Chan, 31, have ratcheted up diplomatic tensions amid repeated pleas of mercy for the pair from Australia and thrown a spotlight on Indonesia's increasing use of the death …

  • US billionaire says WWII Japanese ship found in Philippines
    US billionaire says WWII Japanese ship found in Philippines

    Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen said Wednesday he had found one of Japan's biggest and most famous battleships on a Philippine seabed, some 70 years after American forces sank it during World War II. Excited historians likened the discovery, if verified, to finding the Titanic, as they hailed the American billionaire for his high-tech mission that apparently succeeded after so many failed search attempts by others. Allen posted photos and video online of parts of what he said was the …

  • Pacquiao big hit so far in Vegas sports books vs Mayweather

    LAS VEGAS (AP) — Manny Pacquiao has always believed he can do what 47 other fighters before him have failed to do — beat Floyd Mayweather Jr. in the ring. …

  • Another source of SAF execution video identified
    Another source of SAF execution video identified

    The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) is still tracing the source of the video showing one of the wounded police commandos being finished off by Muslim rebels during the encounter in Mamasapano, Maguindanao last Jan. 25. A source from the Department of Justice (DOJ) said they have identified two persons who first uploaded the video that went viral over social networking sites. The supposed source of the video was elusive and claimed that somebody just placed it on an external drive. The …

  • World's oldest person wonders about secret to longevity too
    World's oldest person wonders about secret to longevity too

    TOKYO (AP) — The world's oldest person says 117 years doesn't seem like such a long time. …

  • N. Korea fires missiles in anger at South-US military drills
    N. Korea fires missiles in anger at South-US military drills

    North Korea fired two short-range ballistic missiles into the sea and vowed "merciless" retaliation Monday as the US and South Korea kicked off joint military drills denounced by Pyongyang as recklessly confrontational. The annual exercises always trigger a surge in military tensions and warlike rhetoric on the divided peninsula, and analysts saw the North's missile tests as a prelude to a concerted campaign of sabre-rattling. "If there is a particularly sharp escalation, we could see the …

POLL

Should Aquino be held accountable over the Mamasapano operations?

Loading...
Poll Choice Options