Japanese Non-league Football News

25th Western Japan Football Tournament

Some details have been released of the 25th Western Japan Football Tournament, which is due to be played in Kumamoto over the weekend of 24th - 26th February. This is a competition for teams finishing the previous season in the top two places of the Kyushu, Shikoku, Chugoku and Kansai Regional Leagues - and as well as an early opportunity to see some of the key non-league sides in the country play each other in a competitive environment, the competition also offers fans a chance to puzzle over its unusual format, which JNFN will here attempt to explain (probably wrongly):

Match 1: Team A - Team B
Match 2: Team C - Team D
Match 3: Team E - Team F
Match 4: Team G - Team H

Match 5: Winner Match 1 - Winner Match 2
Match 6: Winner Match 3 - Winner Match 4
Match 7: Loser Match 1 - Lose Match 2
Match 8: Loser Match 3 - Loser Match 4

Tournament Decider: Winner Match 5 - Winner Match 6
3rd / 4th place Decider: Loser Match 5 - Loser Match 6
5th / 6th place Decider: Winner Match 7 - Winner Match 8
7th / 8th place Decider: Loser Match 7 - Loser Match 8

Although it is not clear how matches map onto the above format, the following fixtures have been announced for the first round of games:

24/02/2006 Sagawa Kyubin Chugoku - Kobe FC 1970
24/02/2006 Rosso Kumamoto - Sanyo Electric Tokushima
24/02/2006 Fagiano Okayama - Banditonce Kobe
24/02/2006 Nangoku Kochi - FC Ryukyu

The 2005 competition finished as follows:

1 Mitsubishi Mizushima
2 Nangoku Kochi
3 Honda Lock
4 AS Laranja Kyoto
5 Ain Food
6 Ehime Shimanami
7 Hiroshima Fujita
8 Okinawa Kariyushi

25/02/2005 Honda Lock 1-0 Ain Food
25/02/2005 Mitsubishi Mizushima 4-0 Okinawa Kariyushi
25/02/2005 AS Laranja Kyoto 3-2 Ehime Shimanami
25/02/2005 Nangoku Kochi 4-3 Hiroshima Fujita SC

26/02/2005 Ain Food 6-0 Hiroshima Fujita SC
26/02/2005 Ehime Shimanami 3-1 Okinawa Kariyushi
26/02/2005 Nangoku Kochi 2-2 Honda Lock (PK 4-3)
26/02/2005 Mitsubishi Mizushima 3-1 AS Laranja Kyoto

27/02/2005 Honda Lock 2-0 AS Laranja Kyoto
27/02/2005 Mitsubishi Mizushima 3-0 Nangoku Kochi
27/02/2005 Hiroshima Fujita SC 2-1 Okinawa Kariyushi
27/02/2005 Ain Food 3-1 Ehime Shimanami

Sagawa Chugoku In Sagawa Sports Festival
Hiroshima-based Sagawa Kyubin Chugoku of the Chugoku League have been competing with other clubs in the Sagawa Kyubin distribution company in what is described as the preliminary round of their own Sagawa Sports Festival. It appears that Chugoku contested no fewer than three games on the same day - 5th February - with results as follows:

Sagawa Kyubin Chugoku 1-4 Sagawa Kyubin Kyushu
Sagawa Kyubin Chugoku 4-0 Sagawa Kyubin Shikoku
Sagawa Kyubin Chugoku 15-0 Sagawa Kyubin Hokuriku

Consequently, Chugoku now go through to compete in the next stage at the beginning of May.
Jubilo Squeeze Out Rosso
New JFL side Rosso Kumamoto narrowly lost to J1 giants Jubilo Iwata in a further pre-season practice game in Kagoshima on Friday. The match was played over the normal ninety minutes plus an additional period of half an hour, with Jubilo claiming a 4-3 final score.
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