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Sunday, January 26, 2014

Ninomiya Kazunari to star in NTV's Spring 2014 drama "Yowakutemo Katemasu ~ Aoshi-sensei to Heppoko Koukou Kyuuji no Yabou"

Arashi's Ninomiya Kazunari will be the lead in the new NTV Spring 2014 drama "Yowakuttemo Katemasu ~ Aoshi-sensei to Heppoko Koukou Kyuuji no Yabou" (Even if we are weak, we will win ~ the aspirations of Teacher Seishi and the lousy senior high school baseball players) which begins its run from April in the Saturdays 9pm timeslot. This will be Ninomiya's first role as a teacher as he plays the character Tamo Aoshi, a biology researcher at University of Tokyo who is asked to become a temporary biology teacher by his alma mater and due to his status as an OB, Tamo has to take on the position of the school baseball team's coach. However, his alma mater being a school focused on increasing the percentage of students making it to university, gives little attention to the baseball team where students are only required to practise once a week since their attention should be focused more on their studies. As such, the team has never won a single match to date. To change the situation, Tamo decides to make use of his clever students and pit their wits together to find a way for the team to win against a strong team despite the challenging conditions facing them.

Ninomiya who had experience playing baseball since primary school and even won the MVP in the 2003 "Johnny's FAN Kanshasai" at Tokyo Dome, said that playing a teacher itself is tough for him and hopes that his performance will be well-received by the viewers. Last year, when he was watching the summer national high school championships (Koshien), he was surprised to see one of the coaches being at the same age as him. All along, he had been playing baseball but never considered the viewpoint of a coach so he will try to play his character just like a coach aiming to bring his team to Koshien.

The drama is said to be an original story based loosely on "Yowakutemo Katemasu - Kaisei Academy Yakyuubu no Theory" by non-fiction writer Takahashi Hidemine which talks about how Kaisei Academy (one of the top private boys' school in Japan) managed to transform its baseball team. As part of the preparations for his role, senior high schools nationwide can apply through NTV's website to get Ninomiya to visit their school so that he can learn more about their baseball team.

Source: Sanspo 1 / Sanspo 2

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