Former VP of IBAF and BFA Died at 84

Autobiography subtitled “One Man’s Mission to Reform the Japanese Railways” – 2002

MATSUDA Masatake, former Vice President of the International Baseball Federation (current World Baseball Softball Confederation) for 4 years from 2005 to 2009 as well as Vice President of Baseball Federation of Asia died of liver cancer in Tokyo on May 19.

H is better known as former president of East Japan Railways Co. and promoter of the April 1987 privatization of the state owned Japanese National Railways. JNR had accumulated long-term debts of 37.1 trillion yen due to excessive investments driven by political interests and the morale of its workers were also deteriorating amid the escalation of labor union activities.

At JR East, Matsuda blazed a path toward its re-development project at and around major train stations, the launch of distribution business and the introduction of the Suica e-money and train fare card.

MATSUDA, an avid baseball fan, lead the Japan Amateur Baseball Association (JABA) for 5 years from 2005 to 2010 and helped Inter-city Baseball Championship to grow. As vice president of IBAF, he advocated introduction of “tie-breaking rule” at international baseball games which went into practice from 2008 Olympic Game in Beijing.