Japanese baseball legend Shigeo Nagashima is set to support Senichi Hoshino’s bid to lead the national team to an Olympic gold medal in Beijing next year.
Nagashima repeatedly turned down Olympic team manager Hoshino’s request to serve as adviser, but accepted it in the end Monday. “I accepted manager Hoshino’s request in the hopes that I could help him lead the team more confidently,” Nagashima said.
Nagashima led Japan to earn a spot at the Athens Olympics, but was hospitalized with a stroke in March 2004 and could not go to Greece.
“Nagashima-san told me many things from his Olympic experience. He repeatedly rejected our request, but we continued to say it’s our strong desire,” said Hoshino, who spoke to Nagashima with three coaches. “He is healthy and I’m relieved. I greatly appreciate his cooperation.”