Japanese softball legend Taeko Utsugi visits Olympic House, adds her name to Olympians Wall

Utsugi, who guided Japan to two Olympic medals as a head coach in Sydney and Athens, visited the Olympic house as member of the WBSC Executive Board, which is holding its meeting in Lausanne, Switzerland.

Japanese softball legend Taeko Utsugi visited today the Olympic House in Lausanne, Switzerland, and signed her name on the Olympic Wall. Utsugi, visited the IOC headquarters during the WBSC Executive Board meeting, which is being held in Lausanne this weekend.

After a playing career that saw her compete in the 3rd WBSC Women’s Softball World Championship (silver medal), she became an assistant coach of the national team, a role she served in at three WBSC Junior Women’s World Championships (medal each time) and the 1996 Olympics.

She was Japan’s Head Coach at three Women’s World Championships, including one silver and one bronze medal. With Utsugi as coach, Japan won the Women’s World Championship Asia qualifier in 2000 and finished in second place at the 2002 Japan Cup. She also coached at three Asian Games (one gold, two silver medals) and at one Asian Women’s Championship.

Taeko Itsugi at Olympic House 10Utsugi managed the Japanese Women’s National Softball team to their first two Olympic medals. In Sydney 2000, Japan lost the gold medal against USA, in an eight-inning drama. Four years later, she managed Japan to a bronze medal finish in Athens 2004, including the historic perfect game from Yukiko Ueno against China, the only seven-inning perfect game in the history of the Olympic softball.

A member of the WBSC Executive Board, she has served in leadership positions at the Japan Softball Association and Softball Asia.

Utsugi became the second softballer to sign the Olympians Wall. In September 2023, Beijing 2008 Olympian and Venezuelan National Olympic Committee President Maria Soto visited the Olympic House and put her name on the wall.

Credit: WSBC