Alvark signs Igarashi

The Japan Times

The Toyota Motors Alvark has acquired national team point guard Kei Igarashi, the Japan Basketball League announced on Wednesday.

The 29-year-old, known as one of the quickest players in the nation, played for the Hitachi Sunrockers in the last six seasons, and has regularly played for the national squad during that span, including in the 2006 FIBA World Championship in Japan.

Igarashi, who stands at 180 cm, said in a statement that he chose Toyota over other clubs that presented offers to him because of head coach Koju Munakata’s enthusiastic invitation and the team’s superior practice facilities.

“I consider this opportunity to play as part of the Toyota Motors Alvark this upcoming season a new challenge for me, while I am full of satisfaction that I have got a place to improve myself as a basketball player,” said Igarashi, who helped Team Japan finish second in the East Asia Championship in Komaki, Aichi Prefecture, last weekend.

Toyota was 18-17 last season and was eliminated by the Aisin Sea Horses in the semifinals of the JBL playoffs.