‘Japan ready to host the world at Tokyo Olympics’

Updated October 21, 2019

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Japan is all set to hold next year’s Tokyo Olympic Games in fashion, the country’s ambassador to Pakistan Kuninori (Matz) Matsuda said on Sunday. — AFP/File
Japan is all set to hold next year’s Tokyo Olympic Games in fashion, the country’s ambassador to Pakistan Kuninori (Matz) Matsuda said on Sunday. — AFP/File

ISLAMABAD: Japan is all set to hold next year’s Tokyo Olympic Games in fashion, the country’s ambassador to Pakistan Kuninori (Matz) Matsuda said on Sunday.

Speaking to a group of journalists, the ambassador said during the Olympic Games, Japan would host large numbers of tourists from across the globe.

He said that his country would provide best services and facilities to all athletes and tourists. “We welcome all,” he said.

The upcoming international multi-sport event is slated to be held in Tokyo from July 24 to August 9.

Matsuda said Japan is looking forward to maximum participation from Pakistan in the Games

“Pakistani shooter Mohammad Khalil Akhtar has already qualified which is a good news, we are looking forward for maximum participation from Pakistan,” he said.

Matsuda also reminisced the glory days of Pakistan hockey and wished the national sport, which is in ailing condition currently, prospers again.

“During my childhood days, Pakistan hockey team was best, I still remember, Pakistan used to tame Japan with huge margins,” he said.

The Pakistan hockey team has one three Olympic gold medals in the past. however, the national side is now ranked 17th in the world and is looking to qualify by beating giants Netherlands in the qualifiers which are set to be held next week.

When the ambassador was told about Pakistan’s thin chances to make it to the Games, he expressed sympathy for the Green Shirts and hoped they will surprise the Dutch.

The ambassador also praised Pakistan for its contribution in cricket, saying that the Japanese have also been taking interest in the sport. He said the Pakistani community settled in Japan is also playing its role in promotion of cricket there.

He said that Japan has already qualified for 2020 ICC Under-19 Cricket World Cup to be held in South Africa.

Published in Dawn, October 21st, 2019