Premier Wen Jiabao played baseball with visiting
Japanese Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda Saturday morning, following
Friday's "heart-to-heart" talks in which they foresaw a coming
spring of the China-Japan ties.
Wen and Fukuda had breakfast together ahead of the baseball play
at the Diaoyutai State Guest House.
Wearing a red baseball cap and grey sport wear, Wen played a
game of throw and catch with Fukuda, a former university athlete,
who wore white outfits.
The play was not on Fukuda's tight visit schedule, but an
extempore arrangement after Friday's talks between Wen and the
Japanese Prime Minister, according to sources with the Chinese
Fukuda recalled during the talks that he proposed to play
baseball with the Chinese premier after Wen's visit to Japan in
April, but had not received reply.
Wen made an immediate response that he would find an opportunity
to throw and catch baseballs with Fukuda.
Wen played baseball with Japanese college students during his
"ice-thawing" trip to Japan, when he especially wore a No. 35 sport
suit to mark the 35th anniversary of the normalization of the
Fukuda will visit a primary school in northeastern Beijing after
the play before leaving for an economic development zone in
Tianjin, home to many Japanese-funded companies.
He will also visit the hometown of Confucius in Qufu, Shandong
Province, before wrapping up his four-day China tour on Sunday.
The China tour was the third overseas trip of Fukuda after he
took office three months ago. He visited the United States and
A book on Wen's April visit to Japan, titled Baseball Player
No. 35: Wen Jiabao, was published recently in Japan.
(Xinhua News Agency December 29, 2007)