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JFA to honor National Stadium with exhibit

Kyodo

The Japan Soccer Museum will host a special exhibit celebrating Tokyo’s historic National Stadium, the Japan Football Association said Friday.

The stadium, which hosted the 1964 Tokyo Olympics, will be closed this year for reconstruction as the centerpiece of the 2020 Tokyo Games. The exhibit at the Japan Soccer Museum in Tokyo’s Bunkyo Ward will introduce visitors to the games and tournaments staged there.

The records of all official games and comments from players who competed there will be on display in the exhibit that will run from Feb. 4 to April 6.

The J. League’s last scheduled game at the National Stadium will be a first-division clash between Ventforet Kofu and Urawa Reds on May 6.

Murai takes reins

KYODO

Mitsuru Murai was appointed J. League chairman on Friday, succeeding the league’s fourth chairman, Kazumi Ohigashi.

The 54-year-old Murai, a former executive of Recruit Holdings Co., was appointed to serve until March 2016. His predecessor Ohigashi, 65, served two terms as the league’s top executive.

Although, Murai has served on the league’s board of directors since July 2008, he has no experience in club operations, making him a unique pick for the J. League’s top job.

“The previous chairman, Mr. Ohigashi, undertook huge reforms, some of which are now just beginning,” Murai told a news conference. “I want to implement them well.”

This year, the league’s third division, J3 is beginning operation, while J1 will adopt a two-stage format starting in 2015.

Meanwhile, former Olympic women’s marathon silver medalist Yuko Arimori and former major league baseball pitcher Satoru Komiyama were added to the league’s board of directors.

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