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  1. #1

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    Post Tran Aiming to Obtain Japanese Citizenship

    Sorry if this has already been posted.

    Japanese article
    http://headlines.yahoo.co.jp/hl?a=20...000052-mai-spo

    rough translation

    >>
    Mervin Tran, a Canadian born figure skater skating Pairs with Narumi Takahashi representing Japan, is aiming to obtain Japanese citizenship, revealed on Sunday 22nd by some JSF person.

    Having Vietnamese father and Cambodian mother, Tran was born in Canada and now has Canadian citizenship. "Olympic games are every athlete's goal," Tran is reported to say, "obviously we are in a very complicated situation, but we realized (from winning the bronze medal at Worlds) that we have something to contribute to Japan."

    According to the JSF person, the success at Worlds has given Tran confidence to compete among the best in the world at the Olympics, and he has made up his mind on this issue. But the problem is that you have to meet strict criteria to become a Japanese citizen, including more than 5 year residency in Japan. "It's impossible for him to become a Japanese citizen in time for Sochi through the regular procedure," the JSF person says, "so we are hoping the government finds some ways to support us."
    >>

    I'm afraid it will be very very difficult (next to impossible ), but good luck to Mervin anyway!

  2. #2
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    No way of knowing but I can't imagine that Japan would just bully through a citizenship in 2 years to a guy with no Japanese heritage, no history of living there and can't speak the language. I know they don't produce a lot of winter olympic medals, but I doubt the Federation would be that desperate.

    If they don't go that pretty much kills Team Japan's hope for a team medal.

    I love T/T, but I just have to think that their bronze was like the Dube/Davison situation in 2008. Enough teams sucked so they snuck through for their one world medal. I don't think we'll see them again on the world podium (except maybe at worlds on the Olympic year) and the JSF probably knows they are long shot...so I'm not sure they will have enough advocates to push this through.

  3. #3
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    Tran earned Japan their first ever World championship medal in Pairs and have been earning good international results for a number of years now.

    Why shouldn't he gain citizenship based on his services to Japan?

    Yes, I know that this law has not been invoked in the past and it's extremely unlikely to get invoked now but why shouldn't it? *stomps his feet like a Rumpelstiltskin*

    Quote Originally Posted by Rock2 View Post
    I love T/T, but I just have to think that their bronze was like the Dube/Davison situation in 2008. Enough teams sucked so they snuck through for their one world medal. I don't think we'll see them again on the world podium (except maybe at worlds on the Olympic year) and the JSF probably knows they are long shot...so I'm not sure they will have enough advocates to push this through.
    Takahashi/Tran had two extremely well choreographed programs this season, both full of transitions. Probably the best programs of the season and with the exception of some of S/S' work, one of the best I have seen ever in pair skating.

    Their basics are very strong, they are elegant, she hits lovely positions in the lifts, etc. etc. etc.

    Yes, they aren't very consistent jumpers but if they manage to land their jumps again, they should easily medal again.

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    Well, there's no harm in at least trying. I highly doubt he will get it, but at least he is making the effort. Their bronze at worlds can only help them.

    I really like T/T. They just need to find a way to make their jumps more consistent if they want to compete with the best on a more regular basis.

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    Never understand why teams like this form when they know all the hurdles that have to be overcome. If they were to marry would he automatically become a citizen. Then they could divorce after Sochi.

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    If they land the jumps/throws- They are very dangerous...better than #2 and #3 Russians, All Canadians (ironically) and Americans. They unfortunately are good for at least 3 mistakes a competition however...

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Iceman View Post
    Never understand why teams like this form when they know all the hurdles that have to be overcome. If they were to marry would he automatically become a citizen. Then they could divorce after Sochi.
    I believe she is much older than she appears...am I right in saying 21? If it is really that simple a solution to just marry, I'll help plan the bachelorette!

  8. #8

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    More about the naturalization process in Japan (from an earlier thread on this topic): http://www.fsuniverse.net/forum/show...41&postcount=2
    "Randy [Starkman (1960-April 16, 2012)] lived by the same motto as the rest of us. The Olympics isn’t every four years, it’s every single day. He just got it." --Canadian Olympic kayaker Adam van Koeverden

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jenna View Post
    Well, there's no harm in at least trying.
    I don't know about that.

    It creates false expectations and disappointment among less knowledgeable fans.

    And if, somehow, the Diet (Japanese Parliament) did grant him citizenship, the pressure to open up citizenship to other people who have actually lived in Japan for many years but cannot meet the normal citizenship requirements (like passing a written test in Japanese) would be enormous. The problem isn't opening up citizenship, but there is something wrong about granting it only to one young man who has never lived in the country while denying it to many others who have.)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Vagabond View Post
    I don't know about that.

    It creates false expectations and disappointment among less knowledgeable fans.

    And if, somehow, the Diet (Japanese Parliament) did grant him citizenship, the pressure to open up citizenship to other people who have actually lived in Japan for many years but cannot meet the normal citizenship requirements (like passing a written test in Japanese) would be enormous. The problem isn't opening up citizenship, but there is something wrong about granting it only to one young man who has never lived in the country while denying it to many others who have.)
    Except for the fact that the one man could potentially earn them Olympic medal (team) and perhaps even future Olympic medals in pairs, a lot of those people living in Japan can't.

    To be frank I think T/T should be like give him citizenship or we will skate for Canada.

  11. #11
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    Granted the Japanese naturalization process is difficult enough, but at this point is there even enough time to get the ball rolling for Tran?

  12. #12
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    If they want to be sure they can go to the Olympics he should move to Japan now and start learning the language so that he can meet the requirements for 2018.

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    I would think their biggest selling point would be that without Tran Japan has no team for the the team event where they have a great shot at Gold. Possibility of bronze in pairs is a crapshoot and not much to bargain with. A gold in a team event would be more enticing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bek View Post
    Except for the fact that the one man could potentially earn them Olympic medal (team) and perhaps even future Olympic medals in pairs, a lot of those people living in Japan can't.
    Is that a meaningful distinction?

    What about being integrated into Japanese society, speaking the Japanese language fluently, paying Japanese income tax, or having a Japanese spouse and children?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cherub721 View Post
    If they want to be sure they can go to the Olympics he should move to Japan now and start learning the language so that he can meet the requirements for 2018.
    I hope Tran is making attempts to learn Japanese. Even if he never gets citizenship, just the fact that he is representing Japan on the international stage makes it important to put in some effort to learn the language and culture.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bek View Post
    Except for the fact that the one man could potentially earn them Olympic medal (team) and perhaps even future Olympic medals in pairs, a lot of those people living in Japan can't.

    To be frank I think T/T should be like give him citizenship or we will skate for Canada.
    If they skate for Canada and have bad performances by chance at Canadian Nationals, they could lose to Duhamel/Radford and Moore-Towers/Moscovitch and not go to the Olympics anyway..

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Iceman View Post
    Never understand why teams like this form when they know all the hurdles that have to be overcome. If they were to marry would he automatically become a citizen. Then they could divorce after Sochi.
    Well, they still get to compete at Worlds even if this doesn't work, which is a big deal for them. Competing at Worlds and not Olympics is better than not having a partner at all, or having a partner who isn't good enough to qualify for the Worlds with you.

  18. #18

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    Could he qualify under the "special relationship" provision?

  19. #19
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    that is Impossible, other than Japan being of the most strict in regards to citizenship and Immigration. regarding VIP, it may have to go to the Parliament and other things before this is approved.

    and if they give Tran special VIP treatment
    it will cause an uproar to the Korean, Chinese and Filipino minorities in Japan
    that have been living for many years but have faced so much discrimination
    regarding their citizenship status

    fact is, Japan wil look at the bigger picture
    and I still think T/T bronze at Worlds was a fluke

    pls Tran = No Japanese Heritage !
    so this a long shot maybe 2018 ?
    maybe even Canada might want to bring him back by then

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by bek View Post
    Except for the fact that the one man could potentially earn them Olympic medal (team) and perhaps even future Olympic medals in pairs, a lot of those people living in Japan can't.

    To be frank I think T/T should be like give him citizenship or we will skate for Canada.
    Unfortunately, Japan is a very closed society and there are a lot more things that are important than one man having a long shot for an Olympic pairs medal.

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