Baseball Icon Ichiro Declines to Be Honored by Japan Govt

Sports Politics

Tokyo, April 5 (Jiji Press)--Japanese baseball icon Ichiro Suzuki has declined to be honored by the government, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said Friday.

By respecting the will of Suzuki, the government will defer discussions on whether to give the People's Honor Award to him, Suga said at a press conference.

Suga quoted Suzuki as saying in response to an informal offer to give him the award, "I will work hard so that I would be able to receive it when my life is brought to a close."

"As (Suzuki) is a superstar who has kept on giving hopes and dreams to many people, we, together with the people, are looking forward to his future success," Suga said.

Suzuki announced his retirement from professional baseball last month after amassing 4,367 hits in 28 seasons in Japan and the United States.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press