Although the cherry blossoms in Tokyo were in full bloom, Japanese sports fans celebrated their country’s World Baseball Classic (WBC) triumph against Team USA on Wednesday.
Approximately a hundred people gathered outside Shimbashi Station in the city centre to get commemorative newspaper copies. The atmosphere became chaotic, with police officers aiding in the distribution of copies.
Yuji Takeno, a 33-year-old firm employee, emphasised his joy as a Japanese citizen and baseball lover. He was motivated to work harder after watching the team’s outstanding performance.
On Tuesday evening in Miami, two-way phenom Shohei Ohtani struck out Los Angeles Angels teammate Mike Trout to seal Japan’s 3-2 triumph. Japan has already won three of the five major international events.
“Thank you Ohtani, thank you warrior Team Japan!” said Sho Ishii, a 29-year-old corporate worker who watched the game at a public viewing near Tokyo Tower.
“Nihon yusho,” or “Japan triumph,” became the top trending subject on Twitter, with baseball-related hashtags occupying the top 10.
Ohtani, who earned two wins and a save, was voted the tournament’s Most Valuable Player. According to Fox Sports, he spearheaded a strong Japanese pitching staff that established a WBC record for strikeouts during the series.
Robert Whiting, a long-time writer on Japanese baseball, asserted that Samurai Japan had three of the top pitchers in the world, including Ohtani, 21-year-old fireballing phenom Roki Sasaki, and veteran Yu Darvish.
Japan’s win coincided with the peak of the cherry blossom season in Tokyo, which covered the city’s parks and streets in pink and white. According to national broadcaster NHK, the mild weather ushered in full bloom nine days earlier than typical in the capital, making it one of the earliest in recorded history.
Photo by: reuters