Japan, US Olympic commitees start soccer wager

The U.S. Women’s soccer team is headed to the World Cup finals against Japan, and Olympic presidents from both countries have agreed to a friendly wager.

If the U.S. team wins on Sunday, Japanese Olympic Committee President Tsunekazu Takeda will send a case of traditional Japanese sake, a Japanese lacquered tray and a hagoita, a traditional Japanese battledore to his counterpart at the USOC headquarters in Colorado Springs.

IF the Japanese prevail, USOC president Larry Probst will ship a traditional cowboy hat, a pair of cowboy boots and a case of Budweiser beer.

“The World Cup has been a thrilling tournament for both the U.S. and Japanese teams,” said Probst. “In the interest of promoting sport and cooperation between our two nations, I am offering Mr. Takeda iconic American gifts should Japan win.”

The U.S. and Japan recorded 3-1 wins over France and Sweden in Wednesday’s semifinal to earn a sport in the final. Sunday’s match marks the third time the two teams will meet this year. The U.S. won both times.

The Japanese are celebrating their 100 year involvement in the Olympics this week, Takeda said.