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Sani Brown, Ejima and Mukai Lead Japanese Team for 2015 World Youth Championships

by Brett Larner

Japan has entered a team of 41, 22 boys and 19 girls, for this week's World Youth Championships.  Its best medal chances come in the four events where it has the #1-ranked athlete, but 14 Japanese athletes factor into the top ten rankings in nine events to offer hope of a little more action.

Abdul Hakim Sani Brown (Josai Prep H.S.) comes into the World Youth Championships ranked #1 in both the boys' 100 m and 200 m hot off finishing 2nd in both distances at last month's Japanese National Championships, the first Japanese high schooler post-war to make the podium in both.  Daisuke Miyamoto (Rakunan H.S.), from the same high school as 2014 World Junior Championships 100 m bronze medalist Yoshihide Kiryu (Toyo Univ.) joins Sani Brown in the top ten rankings in the 100 m, but for Sani Brown the main focus will be the 200 m where his best of 20.56 from Nationals last month is just off the Beijing World Championships qualification standard 20.50.  Should he break that, or the 10.16 standard in the 100 m, you'll be seeing more of him again next month.

Masaki Ejima (Eda H.S.) is ranked #1 in the boys' pole vault with a best of 5.32 m, and with Takaaki Yoshida (Kanonji Chuo H.S.) ranked 6th at 5.11 m there looks like a good chance of a medal there.  Likewise in the girls' 3000 m, where Yuka Mukai (Sera H.S.) is ranked #1 with the meet record 9:04.81 she ran to win June's Chugoku Region High School Championships, and Kanami Sagayama, a member of last year's National High School Ekiden champion Osaka Kunei Joshi Gakuen H.S., is ranked #4 at 9:13.60.  The boys' 3000 m also looks exciting, with #7-ranked Hyuga Endo (Gakuho Ishikawa H.S.), 16, comes in fresh off a 13:50.56 PB for 5000 m last week at the Hokuren Distance Challenge Shibetsu Meet.

9th IAAF World Youth Championships
Cali, Colombia, July 15-19, 2015
click here for official website 
athletes in bold are ranked in the top 10 in their event by season best

Boys
Sprints
Abdul Hakim Sani Brown (Josai Prep H.S.) - 100 m / 200 m - 10.30 / 20.56
Daisuke Miyamoto (Rakunan H.S.) - 100 m - 10.50
Kazuki Tamura (Shimonoseki Shogyo H.S.) - 200 m - 21.12
Manato Sasaki (Morioka Minami H.S.) - 400 m - 47.21
Ryota Kitahara (Shizuoka Shoyo Tokai Prep H.S.) - 400 m - 47.40

Middle Distance
Takuto Hanamura (Higashi Osaka H.S.) - 800 m - 1:51.15
Kazuyoshi Tamogami (Gakuho Ishikawa H.S.) - 800 m - 1:51.78
Takumi Yokokawa (Nakanojo H.S.) - 1500 m - 3:48.74

Long Distance
Hyuga Endo (Gakuho Ishikawa H.S.) - 3000 m - 8:17.85
Yuta Kambayashi (Kyushu Gakuin H.S.) - 3000 m - 8:18.54

Hurdles
Masaki Toyoda (Rakunan H.S.) - 400 mH
Ryusei Fujii (Kokura Kogyo H.S.)- 400 mH
Takeshi Nishida (Kyushu Gakuin H.S.) - 2000 mSC - 5:58.10

Walks
Yasushi Morita (Kokoku H.S.) - 10000 mRW
Toshiki Ueda (Uwajima Higashi H.S.) - 10000 mRW

Jumps
Go Miura (Ina Gakuen H.S.) - HJ - 2.08 m
Masaki Ejima (Eda H.S.) - PV - 5.32 m
Takaaki Yoshida (Kanonji Chuo H.S.) - PV - 5.11 m
Hibiki Tsuha (Nasu Nishi H.S.) - LJ - 7.55 m
Masashi Miyauchi (Sakada Nishi H.S.) - LJ - 7.50 m
Shinya Kobyashi (Suge H.S.) - TJ - 15.21 m

Throws
Gen Naganuma (Takada H.S.) - JT

Girls
Sprints
Miku Yamada (Morioka Seio H.S.) - 100 m - 11.90
Ami Saito (Kurashiki Chuo H.S.) - 200 m - 24.17
Rin Aoki (Soyo H.S.) - 400 m - 54.80

Middle Distance
Shoko Fukuda (Matsue Kita H.S.) - 800 m - 2:07.21
Wakana Kabasawa (Tokiwa H.S.) - 1500 m - 4:20.61
Chika Mukai (Shigakukan H.S.) - 1500 m - 4:20.78

Long Distance
Yuka Mukai (Sera H.S.) - 3000 m - 9:04.81
Kanami Sagayama (Osaka Kunei Joshi Gakuen H.S.) - 3000 m - 9:13.60

Hurdles
Yumi Tanaka (Daiichi Kansai Prep H.S.) - 100 mH
Mizuki Murakami (Keiai Higashi Osaka Prep H.S.) - 400 mH - 59.23
Chisa Kitazawa (Nishijoyo H.S.) - 400 mH - 1:00.21
Yuki Shibata (Kitakyushu Municipal H.S.) - 2000 mSC - 6:47.90

Walks
Maika Yagi (Nishinomiya H.S.) - 5000 mRW
Yukako Hayashi (Yawatahama H.S.) - 5000 mRW

Jumps
Kanae Sugimura (Chiba Reimei H.S.) - LJ - 6.08 m
Maya Takeuchi (Setsu H.S.) - LJ - 6.05 m

Throws
Haruka Kitaguchi (Hokkaido Asahikawa Higashi H.S.) - JT
Tsugumi Okabayashi (Osaka H.S.) - JT

Heptathlon
Maya Shreshta (Keiai Higashi Osaka Prep H.S.)

(c) 2015 Brett Larner
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