Japan Olympic coach Hoshino won't return for WBC

Updated: October 23, 2008, 10:06 AM ET

TOKYO -- Japan's Olympic coach Senichi Hoshino has refused to stay on to lead the defending champions at next year's World Baseball Classic.

The 61-year-old's decision not to answer his country's call leaves Japanese baseball officials with even fewer options ahead of the March tournament.

"Even if I am asked I will turn it down," Hoshino told Thursday's Japanese media. "I have informed [Japan's baseball] commissioner of my decision."

Hoshino suffered intense criticism ...

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