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Wednesday, 25th July 2012
In Japan Sports News,

Japanese Olympians honoured with medals before Games

The Japanese Olympic team received medals on Saturday (July 21st) after children from the tsunami-torn region of the country decided to honour the troupe.

Students from the north-east carved messages into the wooden medals made from debris leftover from the twin-disaster of March, 2011, the AFP reported.

Inscribed messages included "bring back a lot of medals, please" and "waiting for your medals", with almost 300 athletes awarded the carefully-crafted pieces.

It was enough to tug at the heartstrings of the 2009 men's javelin bronze medallist Yukifumi Murakami, who was brought to tears by the gesture.

He was quoted as saying: "I am really moved. I must repay what has been given to me."

It was not just the competitors who received the honour, however, as the entire Japanese delegation of 518 received the gifts, which featured the emblem of the country's Olympic committee.

Heathrow Airport was swamped with visitors when the Japanese teamed arrived in London three days ago.

Posted by Susan Ballion



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