Japan's players agree to take part in 2013 World Baseball Classic

Japan celebrates on the field after beating South Japan celebrates on the field after beating South Korea 5-3, in the final of the World Baseball Classic in Los Angeles. (March 23, 2009) Photo Credit: AP

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OSAKA, Japan -- Japanese players have agreed to take part in the 2013 World Baseball Classic, backing off a threat to boycott the event because of a dispute over the way tournament money is shared.

The players' union had demanded that two-time defending champion Japan control all the sponsorship and licensing revenue generated by its participation in the tournament. Currently, all such money is pooled and distributed by the tournament organizer -- Major League Baseball.

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Following a meeting with tournament organizers in New York in August, officials from Nippon Professional Baseball said some sponsorship and licensing revenue would remain in Japan.

"I think everyone is happy that we can choose players of the highest quality," NPB Commissioner Ryozo Kato said. "We need to put together a team that is intent on winning." The Asian round will be held in Tokyo in March, with Japan facing Cuba, China and the winner of November's Asian qualifying round in Taiwan.

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