winter olympics

Mixed emotions for Japan after women's team pursuit silver

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Great job, ladies! Giri giri desune. Bring home the Gold! Ganbare!!

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Anyhow, congrats for the silver!

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Anyhow, congrats for the silver!

same had it been Bronze even !

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That was an exciting race! Team Japan was leading all the way until the finish line when Team Germany squeaked past them by 0.02 seconds. Ouch!

Well done to all the racers!

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Ato sukoshi! demo omedetou!!! Otsukaresama deshita. Congratulations!!

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Japan was leading for the entire race. I was surprised when Germany closed the gap on the last lap and edged out the win.

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Well done, girls. It's a shame they just missed gold - it seems as if this Japanese Olympic team was jinxed from Day 1! Anyway, a good way for Japan to finish the games. Sadly, I don't think there are any chances for more gold medals for Aussies today ;(

It has been a good games, in my opinion - in spite of the savage criticism in some quarters (ie the BBC). Canada has well and truly "Owned the Podium" as they threatened to do - they have pretty much shocked the world with their complete dominance. I guess it is just the blue riband event left - Men's Ice Hockey - where Canada will no dount add to that collection of Gold! I predict Canada 9 - USA 2

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BurakuminDes - I sure hope you're correct in Canada 9 - USA 2!!! Would love to see that happen to cap off a great Olympics for the host country. I think Canada did a great job hosting these Olympics and I enjoyed watching so many athletes from all around the world compete in their event - they're awesome!

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Good job, ladies! Kept it up through to the end, even with the German team squeaking past for gold.

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Very well done!

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I can understand the idea of being frustrated about it, but if you gave it your all and got silver, what more could you ask for? You don't get the gold simply because you want it, you get the gold because you EARN it. This is a tough concept for a lot of people to comprehend, especially the Japanese media. These girls did amazingly well, and earned a silver for themselves and their nation; there is no need to be upset in any way over that.

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The joy of getting the silver, and the agony of missing the gold by .02 seconds.

"I found myself wishing my legs were a bit longer"

Whenever I fly I find myself wishing my legs were a lot shorter.

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This is a tough concept for a lot of people to comprehend, especially the Japanese media.

Well, smithinjapan. That's a fair comment to make about the media in general, but not in this case, since more of the blame should be levied to Japan’s delegation head and former Olympic speed skater Seiko Hashimoto, since she is the one who made that stupid comment about being disappointed. After all, they are just reporting what someone had said. If you are pointing out the fact that the media asks stupid question upon stupid question like they did with Mao Asada, then that's another matter.

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haoushokuhaki: I am indeed pointing out that the media likes to target people in their grief. This is nothing new, of course, but watching different countries' media coverage of the skating you could see that very clearly. Japanese footage of Mao after the event, for example, seemed to keep bludgeoning her with hard questions while she cried. Canadian media started with how amazing she was, how well she jumped, and then went into what she thinks.

As for this case, I definitely blame Seiko Hashimoto, but she too bought into the media frenzy and helped push the idea that Japan was going to do so much better than it did -- in fact PROMISED they would.

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smithinjapan - I think you're correct in voicing concerns about the Japanese media, but in my opinion, you're a little off in your assessment. It's not like the media blames these athletes for "failures", in fact, seeing footage of medal winners over and over again will tell you that it's the exact opposite. They eat that stuff up (as they should) and celebrate any medals they receive.

The questioning of Mao after her performance, which I was also disgusted with, has nothing to do with disappointment from the media, but rather the infatuation of having an athlete cry on television because it's believed to add drama. You can see it in other interviews, where the athlete doesn't cry, but the interviewer tries his/her (usually his) best to trigger the tears by basically asking the same thing in a number of different ways. I defend Japanese media on this site quite often, because I think there is a lot of unfair criticism from foreigners because they are misinterpreting what they hear on TV, but an absolute pet peeve of mine is how poor the quality of questions are after a sporting event. Nakata was a real jerk to journalists in Japan after he went to Italy, but without knowing him at all, I would venture to guess that it was because he realized how stupid a lot of the questions he was being asked were, and he felt that it was an insult to his level of intelligence. Sometimes, the athletes are just too nice and respond to the crap they're being asked.

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Actually Smithinjapan is quite correct.

Mao Asada did not start crying until the pompous ass of a reporter asked her, "Why do you think didn't you win the gold medal?" That shows the lack of respect and propriety that a reporter should have.

Then again reporters in Japan do not have journalism degrees but any degree that gives them "presenter" qualifications. The Jmedia has along way to go to match BBC, ABC, Reuters, NBC, CBC, or even Pravda prodessionalism.

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Kreza23: I think there is a lot of unfair criticism from foreigners because they are misinterpreting what they hear on TV

I think that's the core of smithinjapan problem.

These stupid questions happen everywhere. You have them in Norway and Sweden. People promise a distinct amount of gold and not getting them. Ever heard of Norwegian skiing kings? Their reaction to fail makes this the micro bit that it is.

Sweden lost an olympic hockey repeat made some good stuff.

Actually I don't mind crying. I intepret it to be close to your own feelings.

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ptolemy: Mao Asada did not start crying until the pompous ass of a reporter asked her, "Why do you think didn't you win the gold medal?" That shows the lack of respect and propriety that a reporter should have.

I think that's an interesting question.

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What is missing from this article and from many other written articles and tv programs has been the lack of praise for the oposition.

Nowwhere does it state how Brilliant the German team were, overcoming a deficit of seconds (a huge gap in this sport) and still a second behind at the final lap.

As close as it was - Synchronised perfection = GOLD.

The Japanese poular media, especially those with apparently little sport competition nouse, should try to admire some of the greatness of other athletes instead of searching for excuses wrapped in regret.

Other world media are also similarly focused at times, but the Japanese medias slant really makes one squirm at times.

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browny1: The Japanese poular media, especially those with apparently little sport competition nouse, should try to admire some of the greatness of other athletes instead of searching for excuses wrapped in regret.

Grasping for straws.

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Yeah browny1: seems like you are grasping for straws. Isn't it enough that the news reports say that so and so finished with the gold, silver, and bronze? After all, this article does say this:

But Daniela Anschutz Thoms, Stephanie Beckert and Katrin Mattscherodt came from behind at the death to defend Germany’s title,

Which does indicate to me that they recognize the fact that the German team had the will power and skill to come from behind and win. You also have to look carefully and see that this report was taken straight from the Associated Press, not some Japanese news agency like Kyodo News.

But I guess you want them to go out of their way to place them on some pedestal or something.

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KingRat: "I think that's an interesting question."

I have no doubt you think it's an interesting question. You probably also think it's 'interesting' to ask someone who catches a cold why they bothered to catch it.

browny1: You're bang on, and I've said the same thing a dozen times; if the Japanese media were an indication of the medals that other countries achieved, there would be no other countries in the world but Japan. I'm still waiting for the 'World Olympics Japan' to be introduced.

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The Germans raced a better tactical race than the Japanese and squeaked out a gold medal in the end.

Japan finishes with 3 silvers and 2 bronze medals. If you follow the gold medal count determiner for the medal standings, Great Britain had a superior Games with its one gold medal for just one overall medal. Japan also finishes behind Australia, Belarus, and Slovakia using this system.

And to think that Japan's miserable failure at Torino in 2006 would also trump this year's overall performance because of Shizuka Arakawa's one gold medal.

Both ways of counting medal standings-gold medals and overall medals-should be considered equally important.

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Congratulations to those who got medals. One way or the other they've set themselves apart from the majority of us.

For the rest of the team: Expect the usual deep bowing, musheagegozaimasen's and waterworks at Narita when they all arrive back with some explaining to do! They're 10 Gold Medals short out of 10 Gold Medals.

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only a 0.02-second difference. ouch, that hurts! they still got silver medals though. that's a big accomplishment! congrats, girls!!!

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smithinjapan: I have no doubt you think it's an interesting question. You probably also think it's 'interesting' to ask someone who catches a cold why they bothered to catch it.

No it's interesting to dissect what she thinks is the missing parts. You are not adressing the issue of whether you think that is disrespectful or not.

I'm a long time fan of figure skating compared to you who only seem interested in downtalking athletes who don't follow your code of behaviour. Who cares if she don't show happiness for silver or not. You probably haven't been close to any olympic training.

ptolemy: Japan's media are not professional journalists but just presenters

It's always funny to see foreigners put their own spectrum of rights and wrong on another countries work force. Have you seen NBC at all?

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smithinjapan: if the Japanese media were an indication of the medals that other countries achieved, there would be no other countries in the world but Japan.

What is wrong with you? You always speak out of the most bitter angle possible.

It feels like you haven't been to much other places than Japan.

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Well, half-way there to the 10 medal goal!

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only a 0.02-second difference. ouch, that hurts! they still got silver medals though. that's a big accomplishment! congrats, girls!!!

I totally agree. This should be a tremendous confidence-builder for the Japanese speed-skating program. They went up against the best and lost by a whisker.

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flavorfav - now who's doing the grasping?

I simply stated that on the media I observed and read(this article included) nowhere was the amazing might of the German teams effort recognised. No details of their unbelievable come from behind last lap. Simple. And irregardless of the media source, this article is obviously pruned for A Japanese audience.

Celebrate your own teams great accomplishment in winning the silver, but please present the WHOLE story, even in short.

The tv media of course was much worse in it's narrow review. Which seems to be confirmed by the fact that the final event, the US vs Canada hockey final was not covered. Already being billed as the greatest Olympic game in history, but not a sniff in. But plenty of morning programs disecting the skating loss.

Sure it's a local market, but it's an INTERNATIONAL event. Flex a little.

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I simply stated that on the media I observed and read

Oh, sorry, browny1. For a minute, I thought you were talking about the Japanese coverage in general. Sorry. I agree, that in this article, the scope is very narrow and that in general you can find more mention of it in other Japanese news sources like the Japan Times, Daily Yomiuri, or Asahi Shimbun (which had several lines dedicated to mentioning the strong German team's come from behind effort in capturing the gold medal). Yes, it would be better if ALL media sources did it, but unfortunately this isn't a perfect world and at least other news sources are doing a better job than this article.

Which seems to be confirmed by the fact that the final event, the US vs Canada hockey final was not covered.

Uh, browny1, you obviously weren't watching it on NHK, because it was on. And there were several mentions of the hockey final early in the day on several TV stations with some highlights.

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Thanks flavorfav.

Re the hockey - Maybe I got my times crossed - if so that's my fault.

Was it on BS NHK or normal NHK?

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