TOKYO (Reuters) - Japan defender Yuichi Komano is poised to get a medal after his missed penalty kick led to the country’s World Cup exit in the last 16.
The governor of Komano’s native Wakayama prefecture told Japanese media on Friday he wanted to present Komano with the medal for his efforts in South Africa.
“We would like to present Komano with a medal for giving people such dreams and emotions,” said Yoshinobu Nisaka Wakayama, who watched Japan’s penalty shootout defeat by Paraguay at a public viewing area with Komano’s mother.
The medal is unlikely to offer much consolation to Komano after he missed Japan’s third kick in the shootout in Pretoria.
“I just kept looking at the floor but my team mates helped lift me,” said the player. “(Defender) Tulio told me he would’ve missed it too. At least I could come home with my head up.”