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Veritas
Oct 23rd, 2006, 04:18 PM
Japan has been the world's 2nd largest economy for ages yet it continues to do so poorly in sport - especially team-related one (such as its joke of a soccer squad :help: ).

Yet with all that money, resources and population, how come it hasn't even produced a player that could get to a GS final?

The most common reasons I've heard are that tennis isn't popular and therefore it's expensive to pay for training and coaches. It explains a lot, but other countries - like Germany - have trouble trying to keep tennis on the radar, yet have had champions such as Graf and Becker.

Another one is that its players are generally shorter build and therefore are nearly always overpowered by their bigger, 6-foot-tall opponents. But Takao Suzuki had Federer on the ropes at the Japan Open a couple of weeks ago (although we could put it down to home soil advantage, which in that case Suzuki's performance doesn't mean that much if it's a one-off thing).

And an interesting one is that the current generation are complacent and don't train as hard compared to others. The high costs in Japan might have something to do with it, but when you hear stories about how much discipline and hard work Eastern European and Chinese players put up with, it's no wonder Japanese tennis in general is so far behind.

I'm interested to know what other reasons there are to explain poor results from Japan :confused:

pcrtennis
Oct 23rd, 2006, 04:21 PM
For women, the physical aspect is a big disadvantage for most. In Japan, tennis is still more of a women's sport. It's not as popular with men. Japan is good at many sports though.

Watch out for Ayumi Morita on the women's side though, she has huge potential.

Nicolás89
Oct 23rd, 2006, 04:23 PM
maybe they are more interested in work with the mind and not with the body :o

komorli
Oct 23rd, 2006, 04:26 PM
yes, Asians tend to be smaller than most races. Even if they are taller than some white people, they probably have smaller frames. I'm Asian and even though I'm taller than most of the people I play with, they have more muscle and are "thicker" than me. That's a huge disadvantage in tennis (esp. on the serve), considering you have people so tall like Sharapova and Dani, etc.

Veritas
Oct 23rd, 2006, 04:28 PM
I think you misunderstood me - even though tennis isn't popular, by this time Japan should've at least have had one significant champion. It has about $5 trillion in GDP, plus a population of almost 130 million. The resources are there, yet almost nothing came out of it :confused: That's why I brought up Germany as an example. Tennis is also today not a very popular sport (compared to soccer) yet somehow they had a Steffi Graf and a Boris Becker. Japan has a similar situation (tennis < soccer) yet it only had a Kimiko Date and a Shuzo Matsuoka. Not meaning to diss them or anything, but not even having a GS title is a huge embarassment considering all other major industrialised countries have had at least one GS champion. Why not Japan?

Another problem with the "tennis isn't popular" explanation is that even when a sport's popular, Japan still doesn't do well. I mean, look at its soccer team :help:

Veritas
Oct 23rd, 2006, 04:30 PM
yes, Asians tend to be smaller than most races. Even if they are taller than some white people, they probably have smaller frames. I'm Asian and even though I'm taller than most of the people I play with, they have more muscle and are "thicker" than me. That's a huge disadvantage in tennis (esp. on the serve), considering you have people so tall like Sharapova and Dani, etc.

Height really shouldn't be that big of an issue. Yes, it can be a disadvantage but being tall can also be one as well - Sharapova's no.1 weakness is her movement. Besides, Henin-Hardenne and Hingis have proven that height disadvantages can be overcome.

thomas.chung
Oct 23rd, 2006, 04:34 PM
Well simply said, there is just isn't enough support from the gov't. I have read this article from the Tennis Magazine awhile ago about tennis in Japan (for both male and female). I hope I can dig it up again. Well if you look at China, the US, the Aussies and even the UKs, they have a rather well funded tennis association or in China's case, backed by the Government. So for these countries, the resource is there to train the players. Let's take China again, it wasn't until recently that Chinese players ripe and go on to win tournaments (and 1 GS doubles title). So I think the problem with Japan is either that their tennis association is not well funded, or Government gives no support or both.

Veritas
Oct 23rd, 2006, 04:41 PM
Well simply said, there is just isn't enough support from the gov't. I have read this article from the Tennis Magazine awhile ago about tennis in Japan (for both male and female). I hope I can dig it up again. Well if you look at China, the US, the Aussies and even the UKs, they have a rather well funded tennis association or in China's case, backed by the Government. So for these countries, the resource is there to train the players. Let's take China again, it wasn't until recently that Chinese players ripe and go on to win tournaments (and 1 GS doubles title). So I think the problem with Japan is either that their tennis association is not well funded, or Government gives no support or both.

I also think funding could be a problem, but other countries that aren't as cash-strapped as Japan have had a number of champions, especially Eastern European and South American countries.

It's so frustrating sometimes watching how tennis (or sport in general) have developed in Japan. Generally, there's almost no diversity in their gamestyle - it's almost always baseliners with completely flat shots that go from side-to-side. Heck, even Aiko Nakamura's ready stance is exactly the same as Sugiyama's :help:

What I'm getting at is that money isn't really the problem - everything about Japanese tennis is.

fufuqifuqishahah
Oct 23rd, 2006, 04:42 PM
i dont think sport is as big in japan as western society


i like the crowd though at the tourneys!!!

Veritas
Oct 23rd, 2006, 04:50 PM
i dont think sport is as big in japan as western society


i like the crowd though at the tourneys!!!

Japan used to do so well in the Olympics - a consistent top-5 finish in the final medal tallies. Big difference was that the past generation understood very well that hard work and discipline = results. The current generation are more concerned about video-games, mobile phones and watching the latest cheesy soap dramas from Korea :help:

Watch out for Ayumi Morita on the women's side though, she has huge potential.

Ayumi Morita's talented but do you honestly think she's GS material? She has the potential to do what Kimiko Date did, but I doubt she'll go any further.

LH2HBH
Oct 23rd, 2006, 05:31 PM
I don't know - the courts by my house are filled with people of Asian descent, including Japanese!

Ai Sugiyama, anybody????

Orion
Oct 23rd, 2006, 05:44 PM
Japan used to do so well in the Olympics - a consistent top-5 finish in the final medal tallies. Big difference was that the past generation understood very well that hard work and discipline = results. The current generation are more concerned about video-games, mobile phones and watching the latest cheesy soap dramas from Korea :help:

Japan never was a figure in track and field, and that's the category that has been expanded the most. Japan can usually be counted on to rake in men's gymnastics medals and a couple swimming events, plus the one-off minor sports (badminton, table tennis, etc.). I think the biggest hindrance to Japanese tennis is the prevalence of alternatives. Also, tennis didn't arrive in Japan until after WWII, whereas Germany has been in tennis country for ages. If you look down the ranks of junior girls, the next twenty years should be very promising for Japanese tennis.

Veritas
Oct 23rd, 2006, 06:50 PM
I don't know - the courts by my house are filled with people of Asian descent, including Japanese!

Ai Sugiyama, anybody????

I love Ai, but honestly can you picture her winning a GS title and reaching no.1?

Again, I'm not knocking Japan down, but I am pointing out how it's seriously underperformed in sport, especially tennis.

cellophane
Oct 23rd, 2006, 06:57 PM
They sure have no problem with figure skating.

Veritas
Oct 23rd, 2006, 06:57 PM
Japan never was a figure in track and field, and that's the category that has been expanded the most. Japan can usually be counted on to rake in men's gymnastics medals and a couple swimming events, plus the one-off minor sports (badminton, table tennis, etc.). I think the biggest hindrance to Japanese tennis is the prevalence of alternatives. Also, tennis didn't arrive in Japan until after WWII, whereas Germany has been in tennis country for ages. If you look down the ranks of junior girls, the next twenty years should be very promising for Japanese tennis.

A country's truly great in sports when it produces the results consistently. It's no good having spectacular results here and there - it only proves that the medals and titles come only when certain athletes are present, not the country in general.

It's only recently Japan managed to pull some of its traditionally good sports together. Before Athens, there was about a twenty year gap where Japan hardly won medals in gymnastics and swimming - most of those were won by the U.S., Russia and China. It's really no coincidence that from 1988 to 2000, Japan didn't even finish close to the top-10 in the medal tally.

And it's also no concidence that its worst performance happened in the 90s when its economy was suffering because of bad investments and a pathetic government that didn't have clue how good decisions are made.

Anyway, back to tennis - correct me here (if I'm wrong) but didn't Japan had a men's team that made the final of the Davis Cup before WWII? If that's the case, then I'm pretty sure tennis wasn't exactly foreign during those times.

Veritas
Oct 23rd, 2006, 06:59 PM
They sure have no problem with figure skating.

That's an area Japan does even worse than tennis - winter sports :help: :help: :help:

cellophane
Oct 23rd, 2006, 07:01 PM
That's an area Japan does even worse than tennis - winter sports :help: :help: :help:

But not in figure skating.

Veritas
Oct 23rd, 2006, 07:26 PM
But not in figure skating.

Didn't they win only one medal at Torino? And wasn't that figure skating medal the only one for the entire country? :help:

Shizuka Arakawa is nice though!

ASerenusFan
Oct 23rd, 2006, 07:33 PM
I dont think many Japanese people care about tennis, and its not that big anywhere in Asia, compared to badminton, table tennis etc where Asia completely dominates, tennis is more of a western sport at the moment

Veritas
Oct 23rd, 2006, 07:41 PM
I dont think many Japanese people care about tennis, and its not that big anywhere in Asia, compared to badminton, table tennis etc where Asia completely dominates, tennis is more of a western sport at the moment

It's embarassing that the sports we dominate in are geek sports (badminton, table tennis) rather than the more physically demanding ones (tennis) :o :lol: :help: At my uni, practically the only people who play table tennis and badminton are Asian bookworms ;)

And change "Asia completely dominates" to "China completely dominates", although I think Indonesia does fairly well in badminton.

I dont think many Japanese people care about tennis

That's my point - there are other countries where most of the population don't care about tennis, yet they've produced a good number of champions. Why is it that Japan has yet to even have one tennis player reach a GS final?

-sugi-
Oct 23rd, 2006, 08:11 PM
Japan never was a figure in track and field,
Yet Japanese Female Runners have won the Olympic Games Marathon for the last few years, I would call that a figure in track and field :confused:

Japan has a lot of players out of the top 100 who have the chance of being good for Japanese Tennis, the Sema Sisters, Takao, Morita, Fuda. Morita is the most talented but most Japanese girls are late bloomers, look at Nakamura and Sugiyama in singles for instance.

ezekiel
Oct 23rd, 2006, 08:18 PM
Japan is really crowded and I guess many youngsters are just not moving enough with all the video games that are made and so popular over there, plus they get all the little gadgets first. I guess it's hard to find time for sports especially ones with no history or direct role models

Diam's
Oct 23rd, 2006, 08:19 PM
Table tennis > Tennis :rocker2:

Drake1980
Oct 23rd, 2006, 08:23 PM
I don't think there is a problem personally. There are so many Japanese players doing well and rising in the rankings right now!

-sugi-
Oct 23rd, 2006, 08:26 PM
I don't think there is a problem personally. There are so many Japanese players doing well and rising in the rankings right now!
exactly

Kirilenko_Kamp
Oct 24th, 2006, 02:52 AM
Two words: "Playstation 3" :p They rather play that than tennis ;)

einna
Oct 24th, 2006, 03:24 AM
well, have all the rich countries produce grand slam winners? and if country = rich, does that mean we should expect them to excel in all kinds of sports too? so the amount of money should be proportional to the success in sport?

And since they suck in tennis and soccer, they suck in sports in general?

I don't think you can say yes to any of the questions above...

Greenout
Oct 24th, 2006, 03:59 AM
Interesting topic. :)


There was a report done years ago, and with first world type economic standards of living Japan and Italy do the poorest in producing champions of sports in consideration to the population numbers. Unfortunately, there's even more of a problem in Japan because they have a declining birth rate which leaves them with an aging population, so it's even trickier to find youngsters to groom for tennis.

My personal observation is that tennis seems to be seen as a rich, upper middleclass, and university sport, and something serious more for girls than boys.

It's bad enough that they have to compete with kids that can literally choose whichever sport they want to excel at but the centers of tennis are only in big capital cities like Tokyo or Osaka (kansai region), not rural or industrial towns in the North or South.

The government isn't the problem, these other countries need their government money because there isn't enough to go around. This is the opposite of Japan, the government doesn't need to support it - there's private funding and sponsoships.

Where are the working class kid tennis players?

Veritas
Oct 24th, 2006, 04:15 AM
well, have all the rich countries produce grand slam winners? and if country = rich, does that mean we should expect them to excel in all kinds of sports too? so the amount of money should be proportional to the success in sport?

Not exactly "proportional" but there should definitely be some results. And boy, their soccer team has so much sponsorship and funding, it's actually funny they couldn't even win a single World Cup match :lol: Not surprising I guess, since most of their soccer players are more interested in sake, manga, skanks with big tits and in school uniform and trying to European-nise themselves as much as possible :o

And Japan isn't just "rich" - it's swimming in cash! Countries that have a similar GDP figure - USA, Germany, France, China - seem to do consistently well. $5 trillion is a lot and it makes me wonder how a country like France with about half the GDP has a much richer sporting history (discounting the doping scandals in cycling). You could point to the bigger population numbers in countries like the U.S., Russia and China, but Germany and France have less people and yet manage to bring in the results. And there's also the "sport is a Western culture" point, but if that argument's gonna work, that'll mean China wouldn't be doing so well in so many sports (again, discounting the drugs allegations and all).

And since they suck in tennis and soccer, they suck in sports in general?

Well yeah! It's only a few segments that they've got a respectable record in. The Olympics is probably the best indication to show how well a country does in sport in general, and you only need to look at the Torino '06 medal tally to see what I mean :tape:

OK, they did well in Athens, but when you break down the stats, it was only in certain categories (rather than a diverse range) that they managed to bring in the medals. Gymnastics, judo, swimming. There. That's probably the only sports that can be counted on. Compared to countries like China, Russia, America and even Germany ( :eek: ) it really makes you think why those countries could make it yet Japan can't.

Plus it's no coincidence that once the new generation came in, Japan went from a consistent top-5 finish in the summer medal tallies to languishing outside the top-10 in the 90s.

I really don't mean to rag on the entire country. It's just that things seem so goddamn frustrating. There's so much resources and so much potential, yet it all goes to waste. There's always so many articles on how much potential there is, but what use is it if it's not being taken advantage of?

I don't think you can say yes to any of the questions above...

Unless they can prove themselves to consistently bring in good results, then IMO their sporting industry can't really be classified as anything special compared to the top guns.

Veritas
Oct 24th, 2006, 04:25 AM
Interesting topic. :)


There was a report done years ago, and with first world type economic standards of living Japan and Italy do the poorest in producing champions of sports in consideration to the population numbers. Unfortunately, there's even more of a problem in Japan because they have a declining birth rate which leaves them with an aging population, so it's even trickier to find youngsters to groom for tennis.

Yes! But why is that?

Btw, at least Italy can produce a world-class soccer team. Japan? :help:

Correct me if I'm wrong, but wasn't the birth rate problem only started to become a big issue in the mid-90s? Surely the 80s would've seen a new generation that could've dug deep into GS draws.

And what's the result? An Aiko Nakamura and a Go Soeda :tape: I like both of them, but let's face, they won't ever win a GS.

My personal observation is that tennis seems to be seen as a rich, upper middleclass, and university sport, and something serious more for girls than boys.

It's bad enough that they have to compete with kids that can literally choose whichever sport they want to excel at but the centers of tennis are only in big capital cities like Tokyo or Osaka (kansai region), not rural or industrial towns in the North or South.

The government isn't the problem, these other countries need their government money because there isn't enough to go around. This is the opposite of Japan, the government doesn't need to support it - there's private funding and sponsoships.

Where are the working class kid tennis players?

Was it you that mentioned before how in the 70s there was a "boom" (similar to the Chinese girls today - but not the Chinese guys :tape: ) in Japanese tennis but because the sponsors forced them to play Japanese circuits as well as international ones, most of them burnt out early and never reached their potential?

And what's up with the guys? Are they spending 90% of their time in front of their playstations and playing soccer video games rather than getting outdoors and getting down to the real training? (j/k :p ) Seriously the women's tennis isn't crash hot, but the mens ... :help: Only one guy of note - Shuzo Matsuoka - and he couldn't even reach the top-30. I know tennis is a miniscule sport in Japan, but surely it shouldn't be this bad considering there have been big tournaments (AIG Open, Pan Pacific Open) that attract big crowds and do promote the sport.

I guess the hope for Asian tennis is now only in China - and no, I don't count Thailand since Schrichapan looks like he's in a permanent slump.

Greenout
Oct 24th, 2006, 04:48 AM
Yes! But why is that?


And what's up with the guys? Are they spending 90% of their time in front of their playstations and playing soccer video games rather than getting outdoors and getting down to the real training? (j/k :p ) Seriously the women's tennis isn't crash hot, but the mens ... :help: Only one guy of note - Shuzo Matsuoka - and he couldn't even reach the top-30. I know tennis is a miniscule sport in Japan, but surely it shouldn't be this bad considering there have been big tournaments (AIG Open, Pan Pacific Open) that attract big crowds and do promote the sport.

I guess the hope for Asian tennis is now only in China - and no, I don't count Thailand since Schrichapan looks like he's in a permanent slump.

Where are the boys? I guess they rather join the Johnny's than learn to play tennis. :tape: ;)



*Shuzo Matsuoka isn't helping things either being a tv celeb/talento. I seen him on a variety show earlier this year, and you know what he said? Shuzo said if he played against a tour player, someone like MARIA SHARAPOVA he would only win 3 games, and get his ass kicked by her. :tape:



*The player that gave us the injury/medical timeout rule. Blame it all on withering, moaning, rolling on the ground, in a state of shock Shuzo, and his tears. After his incident the injury/medical timeout rule came into tennis.

Rising Sun
Oct 24th, 2006, 06:42 AM
Japan has no national development program. Players are forced to develop their games through private means.

jazzfuzion
Oct 24th, 2006, 06:45 AM
yes they've got a 120 million people but their emphasis on education may be far greater than a professional career in sport hence the reason for that? i mean,this is the case with,like,er,singapore haha

martin white
Oct 24th, 2006, 01:33 PM
i dont see any problems with tennis in japan! tennis has allways been dominated by the women than the men!japan have 3 women inside the top 100,2 former 100 players in shinobu asagoe and saori obata have retired this year!,japan has a host of young and up and comers making good progress in the rankings,ie erika takao and ayumi morita! there will be a possible 9 japanese female players in the australian open qualie draw! :)

Ellery
Oct 24th, 2006, 01:53 PM
I wouldn't say that the Japanese are weak in the Olympics. I remember them winning like 8 golds out of 12 golds or something in judo at Athens :p Asia sucks in track and swimming in general, so that applies to both China and Japan. I guess the difference between China and Japan is that China consistently wins like 4 or 5 golds in diving, 4 or 5 golds in weightlifting, 3 or 4 in shooting, 3 or 4 in table tennis, 3 or 4 in badminton, 2 or 3 in gymnastics, plus they win one gold or two in judo, taekwondo, rowing, track swimming, fencing, etc, etc. Japan kicks ass in judo, has a solid men's gymnastics squad, has a couple of top swimmers and long distance runners, but other than that, they don't really dominate in anything, at least not enough to win more than 2 or 3 golds in one event. I still wouldn't complain about their sports system though. Look at Canada :tape: :o

Experimentee
Oct 24th, 2006, 02:41 PM
Japan arent doing that badly. They have had a top 5 player, a top 10 player recently, and lots of others in the top 100.
Being rich doesnt necessarily mean you have to have great players. Australia, Canada and the UK havent had a GS champion for decades but they are some of the richest countries.

Veritas
Oct 26th, 2006, 02:20 AM
I wouldn't say that the Japanese are weak in the Olympics. I remember them winning like 8 golds out of 12 golds or something in judo at Athens :p Asia sucks in track and swimming in general, so that applies to both China and Japan. I guess the difference between China and Japan is that China consistently wins like 4 or 5 golds in diving, 4 or 5 golds in weightlifting, 3 or 4 in shooting, 3 or 4 in table tennis, 3 or 4 in badminton, 2 or 3 in gymnastics, plus they win one gold or two in judo, taekwondo, rowing, track swimming, fencing, etc, etc. Japan kicks ass in judo, has a solid men's gymnastics squad, has a couple of top swimmers and long distance runners, but other than that, they don't really dominate in anything, at least not enough to win more than 2 or 3 golds in one event. I still wouldn't complain about their sports system though. Look at Canada :tape: :o

Japan's economy is about 4-5 times bigger than Canada's, plus their population is over 100 million, whereas for Canada it's about 40 million. And Canada consistently outperforms Japan at the Winter Olympics as well. There's absolutely no reason why Japan can't be up there with the top performers. And the "focusing on education" isn't really a good excuse, considering China has been doing so well.

I'm sorry it's just that when I look at their dismal sports record and compare it to other countries with a similar sized economy and population numbers, it's really confusing how Japan could not bring in the results yet others can.

China's support for its athletes and America's well thought-out system should be something for Japan to work hard towards.

Veritas
Oct 26th, 2006, 02:22 AM
Japan arent doing that badly. They have had a top 5 player, a top 10 player recently, and lots of others in the top 100.
Being rich doesnt necessarily mean you have to have great players. Australia, Canada and the UK havent had a GS champion for decades but they are some of the richest countries.

But that's also my point: Japan should've done better than just having had one top-5 player.

Plus those countries had GS champions; Japan never had one :tape: :o :help:

Diam's
Oct 26th, 2006, 02:56 AM
China's support for its athletes and America's well thought-out system should be something for Japan to work hard towards.

which system :scratch: ? private academies ?

ezekiel
Oct 26th, 2006, 03:11 AM
But that's also my point: Japan should've done better than just having had one top-5 player.

Plus those countries had GS champions; Japan never had one :tape: :o :help:

Did any asian country had one ? Why should Japan have one ? I guess it's just not popular for kids as much as video games

MikeJones
Oct 26th, 2006, 05:45 AM
Haha, its amazing though that Japan has the worlds 2ND best womens softball team, after Team USA. And after Cat Osterman, maybe the best softball pitcher in the world, yet their soccer team is a joke, as well as basketball. And they produce no good players. :help:

Experimentee
Oct 26th, 2006, 07:55 AM
But that's also my point: Japan should've done better than just having had one top-5 player.

Plus those countries had GS champions; Japan never had one :tape: :o :help:

Japan hasn't always been a rich country though. Only since a few decades ago. Those countries I mentioned have been world powers for centuries.

And Asians dont tend to concentrate as much on sport as Western countries. They prefer to concentrate on education. China hasnt had a GS champion either with a much bigger population.

Veritas
Oct 27th, 2006, 04:34 AM
Did any asian country had one ? Why should Japan have one ? I guess it's just not popular for kids as much as video games

With all due respect, Japan's economy dwarfs those of other Asian countries (except maybe China nowadays). Even in the 90s Japan's economy was about 7-10 times the size of all other Asian economics joined together. Japan was fortunate to have the $$$ resources to give their sports industry a good push, but what has that money been spent on? Their bukkake and hentai industries probably :tape:

Ironic thing was that in the past, Japan's young population were willing to work hard. That's a big reason why they did so well in the Olympics. But today's youths (mostly born in the 80s) are only interested in manga, anime, make up, fashion, and living off their parents' hard-earned money. They're mostly a lazy bunch and I really don't have any hope in the new crop of Japanese tennis players. Ayumi Morita might do well, but only well enough to become top-20 (or maybe top-10 if most of the top players are injured). IMO, its sports industry went downhill ever since the 80s generation came into play.

Veritas
Oct 27th, 2006, 04:41 AM
Japan hasn't always been a rich country though. Only since a few decades ago. Those countries I mentioned have been world powers for centuries.

And Asians dont tend to concentrate as much on sport as Western countries. They prefer to concentrate on education. China hasnt had a GS champion either with a much bigger population.

Australia and Canada were world powers for centuries? :help: :tape: Japan has been an industrialised country for almost 3 centuries. Even before WWII, its economy was in the top-5. After WWII, it took only till the late 50s before they got their industries up and running. And they wouldn't have been able to find the funding to host the 1964 Olympics if they didn't have the economy to support it. Plus they consistently outperformed Australia and Canada at the Olympics before the 90s.

I do have a problem comparing Japan to other Asians at some point. Not to be denegrating others, but in the past, Japan was the only Asian country who was up there with the wealthiest Western countries. Concentrating on education is one thing, but it's only so intense in Asian families because (1) their country's economy is in the process of getting into gear, and (2) they're living in a foreign country. Also, Japan did very well in the Olympics in the past, again showing that it had the potential to move beyond the engineering, science, medicine, commerce, technology, etc., etc., stereotype.

einna
Oct 27th, 2006, 04:47 AM
With all due respect, Japan's economy dwarfs those of other Asian countries (except maybe China nowadays). Even in the 90s Japan's economy was about 7-10 times the size of all other Asian economics joined together. Japan was fortunate to have the $$$ resources to give their sports industry a good push, but what has that money been spent on? Their bukkake and hentai industries probably :tape:

Ironic thing was that in the past, Japan's young population were willing to work hard. That's a big reason why they did so well in the Olympics. But today's youths (mostly born in the 80s) are only interested in manga, anime, make up, fashion, and living off their parents' hard-earned money. They're mostly a lazy bunch and I really don't have any hope in the new crop of Japanese tennis players. Ayumi Morita might do well, but only well enough to become top-20 (or maybe top-10 if most of the top players are injured).

cost of living in japan is pretty high... and they have such a different culture and value system focusing more on education than sports.

And I don't agree with your stereotyping the japanese children nowadays are non hard working and only interested in spending their parents' money.
It's ok to criticize their sports system or how poor they develop their tennis but to actually say such statements about a country is simply not right....

Veritas
Oct 27th, 2006, 05:04 AM
cost of living in japan is pretty high... and they have such a different culture and value system focusing more on education than sports.

I suppose that could be a reason, but again, it's not a strong one since China is just as (if not, more) education-focused yet their sports industry is thriving. You'd expect Japan after having been industrialised for so long to have picked up some pace, but well ... :tape:

And I don't agree with your stereotyping the japanese children nowadays are non hard working and only interested in spending their parents' money.

OK, I'll rephrase what I said there: "a lol" of the Japanese born in the 80s are nowhere near as disciplined or hardworking as the past generation.

It's nice and all that conditions aren't as harsh as before and Japanese today have more options about what career they want to pursue and how they want to plan out their future. But I'm afraid that this has cost their society one thing: discipline. And that's what's lacking in Japanese youth culture and that's what's also holding them back and letting other countries march right past them.

In fact I'll go as far to say that China will have dozens of GS mens and womens champions (and world no.1s) before Japan will even have its first one. The difference in work ethics between the two youth groups is pretty big :help:

njnetswill
Oct 27th, 2006, 05:07 AM
Japanese players just don't seem to be able to produce a big weapon. They are always counterpunching types. Fast with consistent groundstrokes with short, compact backswings. Mediocre serves. :shrug:

Greenout
Oct 27th, 2006, 05:08 AM
I use to think it was an attention span problem, but I marvel at everyone's level of focus to drown out noise and things. It's so crowded in Japan, much like it is in alot of population dense urban major cities in Asia.

It can't really be the desire or the lack of opportunity because unlike this country where I'm based at (Singapore) Japan encourages sports in all level of schools, regardless if you can excel or become pro.

I now think it has something to do with a mental problem, there's some serious choking going on in practically every match I've seen of a player from Japan. They've got so many form/technque coaches, that maybe it's time for a sports psychologist. You always read about how xxx player improved after a stint out of Japan, and they have more confidence.


What do you think? A confidence problem? Chinese players seem to be metnally stronger in matches.

Veritas
Oct 27th, 2006, 05:17 AM
It can't really be the desire or the lack of opportunity because unlike this country where I'm based at (Singapore) Japan encourages sports in all level of schools, regardless if you can excel or become pro.

Encouraging is one thing; actually doing the work is an entirely different matter. OK, it might be a bit of a stereotype to say Japan's youths are much more superficial and less disciplined than others, but from what I've observed, it's actually not too far from the truth - for most of them.

I now think it has something to do with a mental problem, there's some serious choking going on in practically every match I've seen of a player from Japan. They've got so many form/technque coaches, that maybe it's time for a sports psychologist. You always read about how xxx player improved after a stint out of Japan, and they have more confidence.


What do you think? A confidence problem? Chinese players seem to be metnally stronger in matches.

I think diversity could be another reason. Another thing I noticed about Japanese tennis: their players have a game style that's almost exactly the same as one another. There are some differences, but overall it's very generic.

Veritas
Oct 27th, 2006, 05:21 AM
I read in an article that maybe the problem is to do with how things were handled in the past.

It's no secret that in Japan, discipline was much harsher and more strict than in Western countries. Beatings were more frequent and it wasn't uncommon for a lot of Japanese students and athletes to suffer mental breakdowns or early burnouts.

Maybe the Japanese who experienced those harsh things didn't want to inflict the same thing onto their children and that's why there's less discipline today. That, IMO, is another mistake.

Discipline shouldn't be harsh and should be fair, but at the same time people should be trained from the start to control themselves - control their desire to play video games and splurge on the latest accessories and instead use that time to do something productive.

Greenout
Oct 27th, 2006, 05:34 AM
I read in an article that maybe the problem is to do with how things were handled in the past.

It's no secret that in Japan, discipline was much harsher and more strict than in Western countries. Beatings were more frequent and it wasn't uncommon for a lot of Japanese students and athletes to suffer mental breakdowns or early burnouts.

Maybe the Japanese who experienced those harsh things didn't want to inflict the same thing onto their children and that's why there's less discipline today. That, IMO, is another mistake.

Discipline shouldn't be harsh and should be fair, but at the same time people should be trained from the start to control themselves - control their desire to play video games and splurge on the latest accessories and instead use that time to do something productive.



Really interesting.

Yup, they've really held back on the harsh discipline in schools due to complaints these past decades.

Discipline and confidence are so tied together in tennis. There's no crazy tennis dads ala Eastern European players that I can name of. We don't even have the father/life coach figure like Justine and Carlos in Japanese tennis today.

Wait? Maybe there are some out there in Japan. If there are someone please give me the name of the player. I want to read about them.


Have you read any Japanese tennis magazines? There is interest in tennis in Japan. They've got an *audience, and obviously enough players to purchase one of five montly magazines, and keeping them in business, (TENNIS JOURNAL, TENNIS CLASSIC, SMASH, TENNIS, and T. TENNIS).


Really, they should be doing better in results.



*maybe it's just a bunch of overly enthusiastic Maria and Pim Pim fans purchasing every single magazine with their pics month after month. ;) :tape:

Veritas
Oct 27th, 2006, 12:15 PM
Really interesting.

Yup, they've really held back on the harsh discipline in schools due to complaints these past decades.

Discipline and confidence are so tied together in tennis. There's no crazy tennis dads ala Eastern European players that I can name of. We don't even have the father/life coach figure like Justine and Carlos in Japanese tennis today.

Wait? Maybe there are some out there in Japan. If there are someone please give me the name of the player. I want to read about them.


Have you read any Japanese tennis magazines? There is interest in tennis in Japan. They've got an *audience, and obviously enough players to purchase one of five montly magazines, and keeping them in business, (TENNIS JOURNAL, TENNIS CLASSIC, SMASH, TENNIS, and T. TENNIS).


Really, they should be doing better in results.



*maybe it's just a bunch of overly enthusiastic Maria and Pim Pim fans purchasing every single magazine with their pics month after month. ;) :tape:

Those "harsh discipline" stories have simmered down these days - although when I went on that exchange program the judo "sensei" didn't hold back too much telling students what a piece of sh*t he thought they were :o

To a point I think it's the right thing to do that things aren't as crazy as before. Overdoing things can end up being worse because when someone's potential is killed, there's almost no turning back. Look what happened to Jelena Dokic :help:

I don't think there's any English-version of those Japanese tennis mags so I haven't read any of them. It's been a while since I studied the language so trying to get through even one page would take me ages :o

What really frustrates me is that Japanese fans seem to support foreign players more than their own. Maybe it's because they've got no home players they can truly be proud of, but compare that to Australian fans who support their own players (no matter the prestige and ranking) very loudly. I remember watching the match between Venus and Saori a couple of years ago at the Pan Pacific and it's amazing how much more support Venus got. Just goes to show how many superficial and shallow people there are amongst Japanese sports fans - they care more about the ranking and prestige rather than supporting the locals :o :o :o And look what happened once Kimiko left the scene - tennis went skydiving and hasn't stopped dropping since.

No wonder Japanese sports companies don't dish out that much cash to develop the sport locally - what's the point if popular ones are wide eyed, white-skinned Europeans/Americans? These companies want a return for their investments, and they won't get any if the local players can't generate much publicity.

It's so frustrating sometimes. I can't believe the public is crazy about their hopeless soccer team rather than their tennis players. At least their tennis players bring in SOME result, even though it's not the ones that really matter. What has their soccer team done? Dye their hair? Jet off to Europe and try to refashion themselves as European as possible? Heck they couldn't even win ONE world cup match :lol: :help:

P.S. I was :eek: :eek: :eek: when the Japanese public lauded their soccer team as "heroes" when they got home from the World Cup. That was stupid IMO. Doing that only gave their egos a boost. They should've done what the Brazillians did to their team :devil: