translated and edited by Brett Larner
Will a man born in the marathon kingdom of Kenya be the one to save the sadly depleted Japanese marathon scene??? On April 4 Benjamin Ngandu (25, Team Fujitsu), well-rememberd for passing 12 people on the way to winning the Hakone Ekiden's ultracompetitive Second Stage his senior year at Nihon Univesity, revealed that he is exploring obtaining Japanese citizenship. Speaking about the 2020 Tokyo Olympics during an interview in Chiba on the occasion of his joining the Fujitsu corporate team, Ngandu, a longtime Japan resident, said, "I'm thinking about whether to run for Kenya or the Japanese team." He plans to make a final decision by 2018. If he chooses Japan he could become a totally outside-the-box catalyst that nobody could have foreseen for the revitalization of Japanese men's marathoning.
Translator's note: With the Project Exceed million dollar bonus for any Japanese citizen who breaks the 2:06:16 national record having been in place for over two years now, the only surprise here is that it has taken this long for this to happen.