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 Post subject: Japanese Pro League?
PostPosted: 03 Dec 2016, 18:12 
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"The idea of a Japanese professional table tennis league has been around for years. If approved at a Japan Table Tennis Association board meeting Dec. 10, plans will finally go into motion.

A league governing body would be formed next spring to select teams and home cities. Officials aim to start play in fall 2018.

The new league would consist of corporate teams from the existing Japan Table Tennis League, as well as new clubs. Some company teams have expressed interest in joining.

The top tier would have six to eight teams each for men and women. As in soccer or baseball, teams would play home and away games during the season. Lower tiers could be added eventually.

Most of Japan's leading table tennis players -- including well-known names in Asia such as Jun Mizutani, Ai Fukuhara and Kasumi Ishikawa -- do not belong to corporate teams in the Japan Table Tennis League. Many, particularly on the men's side, play in European professional leagues, preferring the better deals and higher level of competition there. The Japan Table Tennis Association hopes to sign up such native stars as well as promising foreign players."

http://asia.nikkei.com/Life-Arts/Life/J ... nis-league

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 Post subject: Re: Japanese Pro League?
PostPosted: 03 Dec 2016, 18:19 
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Fukuhara Ai went pro when she was - what was it, 10?? :lol: Where did she play professionally?

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 Post subject: Re: Japanese Pro League?
PostPosted: 16 Dec 2016, 16:09 
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The eventual implementation will be less fancy than originally reported. The new league will start in 2018.

http://www.japantimes.co.jp/sports/2016 ... FOLTMI8aaM

"The initial concept was to make the proposed T-League professional in the future, but as corporate teams objected to the idea, the framework was changed to include a mixture of pros and amateurs from corporate, club and school teams, officials said.

An integrated organization for running the new league will be set up next March, the association’s board decided at its meeting in Tokyo.

“As a measure to spread and strengthen (the sport) in Japan, it is better not to dwell on turning it professional,” Ichiro Hoshino, an executive of the association, said."

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