TECO in Osaka presents Award to Mr. Uyama Toshimi, Chairman of the Japan International Sport Association
The chairman thanked TECO in Osaka for its recognition of the Association’s achievements. He commented that thanks to the exchange activities of the last 30 years the junior baseball teams of Taiwan and Japan are now very close, like a family. He was very pleased by the impressive achievements that players from both sides have had, not only in baseball, but also in other areas of their life when they grew up. The Association will continue to promote friendly relations between Taiwan and Japan through junior baseball exchanges.
Chairman Uyama has personally loved baseball from his childhood, and he organized the Association in 1981 to spread international baseball exchanges. In the very beginning, the Association's junior baseball team only visited Korea and the Philippines, but it quickly discovered that the Taiwanese also like baseball very much, the Taiwanese players are very polite, and there are many places in Taiwan worth learning about. And so they decided to visit Taiwan every year, from 1982 onwards. The Association also invites a Taiwan boys’ baseball team to Osaka every year.
The Association team that went to Taiwan in the first year had only 26 players, but the number of team members quickly increasing after that. The highest number of players sent to Taiwan reached 223 making up 12 teams. In recent years there have still been 12 teams visiting Taiwan, now made up of 140 players. Over the past 32 years, 4,500 Japanese junior baseball players have been to Taiwan, and several among them went on to become star players in the Japan Professional Baseball League. Similarly, several of the Taiwanese players who played with the Association's Teams have also gone on to become famous baseball players, including the great batter Lu Ming-Su, who succeeded in the Giants Team of the Japan Professional Baseball League.