Thursday, April 16, 2009

sports in japan

Everyone even remotely close to the Osaka area is a Hanshin Tigers fan. Founded in 1935, the Hanshin Tigers are the second oldest baseball club in Japan. Loyal fans flock to Koshien Stadium, pictured in the first photo, no matter the night of the week dressed head to toe in gold and black, ready to the famous eat curry rice, and of course cheer their beloved Tigers to victory. Every cheer is in perfect unison and the special clappers keep the stadium roaring. The Japnese people have a reputation for being reserved with their emotions and not causing a scene, but as I saw when I attended the Hanshin Tigers game on Wednesday night, within the Koshien stadium gates, anything goes. The fans provided more entertainment than the actual game. More than realizing anything particularly unique about Japanese sports, I realized how universal sporting events are. Since the beginning of time people have gathered to see competition of all kinds and the appeal never dies. The first picture of Koshien stadium could be a stadium anywhere and the excitement and devotion of the crowd had the feeling of going to a college football game or MLB game in the States. The second photo shows an American explaining to an baseball newcomer from Australia, the rules of the game. By then end of it, she was just as enthusiastic as the decked out Japanese couple behind us. There is something about the atmosphere of healthy competition that reaches all countries and people. Here is a video of one of the many synchronized Hanshin cheers. For more information on the Tigers, click here

1 comment:

  1. Yes, some might argue that watching the fans is a more fun and intertesting sport than the baseball itself. But of course you can't have one without the other.