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SPORTS JAPAN tells you everything about the exciting world of Japanese sports and martial arts with in-depth analysis and up-to-the-minute stories.

Ayako Kisa

Originally from Tokyo, Ayako lived in Los Angeles for 7 years during her childhood. She later became a well-known newscaster for Fuji TV and married US Major League baseball player Kazuhisa Ishii. She went on to become a freelance TV personality appearing on various news, variety and sports shows.



Sun.14:10 - 14:40
20:10 - 20:40
Mon.2:30 - 3:00
8:30 - 9:00


Dec. 24, Wed.

Kendama World Cup

Dec. 24, Wed. 15:30/ 21:30 (UTC)
Dec. 25, Thu. 3:30/ 9:30 (UTC)

Kendama is a traditional Japanese toy now surging in popularity around the world. The boom in international interest began 5 years ago when a young American brought home a kendama from Japan and posted some tricks on a video-sharing site. We see how this Japanese pastime has been transformed into a captivating sport and check out some awesome skills at the first-ever Kendama World Cup.

*This program was first broadcast on Sep. 14

Dec. 21, Sun.

The J. League's Battle for the Title

The J. League, Japan's football league, is going right down to the wire this season. We report on the climactic battle for the title and also see some of the season's best goals. We also present a special feature on Matsumoto Yamaga, a club that has just been promoted to J1, the league's top division. It's a fairytale ending for the regional team who were only playing in the amateur JFL several seasons ago.

  • [Guest]
    Sean Carroll
    Sean Carroll is a football journalist from the UK and SPORTS JAPAN's resident football expert. He has been reporting on the J. League since 2009 for various domestic and international publications.
  • [Guest]
    Tsutomu Nishino
    Tsutomu Nishino played as a defender for J.League team Urawa Red Diamonds until 2001. After retiring, he studied for his MBA at the University of Liverpool and then returned to Japan to work on the staff of the Urawa Reds.

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