A party was held at the National Stadium to celebrate the receipt of the Order of Culture by former Japan Football Association President Saburo Kawabuchi.

The 86-year-old was instrumental in the launch of Japan's first professional soccer league, the J.League, as the first chairman, and contributed to the league's inception and subsequent development in 1993.

After that, he served as the 10th president of the Japan Football Association, and last month he became the third person from the sports world to receive the Order of Culture for his contribution to the promotion of sports, including strong leadership in the basketball world.

On the 3th, a ceremony to celebrate Mr. Kawabuchi's acceptance was held at the National Stadium, attended by more than 30 people, including coach MORIYASU Hajime of the Japan National Team and J.League Chairman Yoshikazu Nonomura, as well as other people involved in football and politics.

Mr. Kawabuchi said, "I was concerned that there would not be an environment where anyone could enjoy their favorite sports whenever they wanted, so I decided to launch the J.League and create such facilities throughout Japan.

He also said, "I believe that this award is the result of the fact that many people have been involved in volunteer activities rooted in the community through the J.League, and I will continue to do my best to develop sports culture."