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16/07/2012

Japan Olympic teams start their tune-ups in UK and Europe

The Japan men's Olympic team started training in England on Monday after flying from Japan for the London Summer Games.
    The squad was joined by Hoffenheim forward Usami Takashi and Stuttgart defender Sakai Gotoku, who both missed Wednesday's Olympic send-off game against New Zealand due to club commitments.
    "I want to do something for our team," said Usami. "And I want to score goals in the tournament."
    Sakai commented, "I couldn't join them in Japan but had good sessions at my club in Germany. I am hoping to play in the games and that will help me raise my level."
    Japan men's Olympic coach Sekizuka Takashi said, "Having arrived in UK makes me feel the tournament is close."
    Ahead of their opening match against Spain on July 26 in Glasgow, the young Japanese side will have two warm-ups: against Belarus on Wednesday and Mexico on Saturday, both in Nottingham, England.
    
    Meanwhile, the Japan women's team, who left Tokyo together with the men's team on Sunday, started training near Paris on Monday following their arrival in France.
    Nadeshiko captain Miyama Aya said, "I hope we can enjoy every day and do what we have to do." When she left Japan, the Okayama Yunogo Belle midfielder said she wanted the team to come back with a gold medal.
    The Nadeshiko will play France in their final warm-up in Paris on Thursday before heading to Coventry, England, where the world champions will have their opening game against Canada on July 25.