• Kyodo


Hanshin Tigers lefty Kei Igawa, who has set his sights on a move to the major leagues through the posting system, hit a snag Friday in the second round of talks with the Central League club.

Igawa and his agent, Hironari Hashioka, met with officials of the club to convince the team to put him up for auction through the bidding system, but the team has refused to budge on its policy of only recognizing free-agent deals.

“There was no progress made. I plan to talk to Igawa and decide together with him on a definitive course of action,” Hashioka said.

Hashioka did not rule out the possibility that the 25-year-old would abandon his plans to move to the majors this season at the following round of talks next week.

Club president Toshihiro Makita said he is confident of reaching a decision by the end of the month.

Hanshin has made Igawa an offer of 250 million yen in annual salary for 2005, but Hashioka has avoided comment on the proposed deal.

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