Ogasawara rewarded for impressive return
The 30-year-old returned to the national team for the first time since the 2006 FIFA World Cup™ and impressed in the goalless draw with Venezuela in yesterday's friendly. FC Tokyo forward Sota Hirayama, a second-half substitute against the South Americans, was also included.
"I was satisfied with Ogasawara's work, he did well with his passing and shooting," said Japan coach Takeshi Okada. "Hirayama did more than I had expected."
However, Tokyo midfielder Naohiro Ishikawa and Antlers forward Shinzo Koroki were excluded from the list, while Shonan Bellmare defender Taisuke Muramatsu departed at the weekend after picking up an injury during last week's training camp.
The squad also features the likes of Gamba Osaka midfielder Yasuhito Endo, Kawasaki Frontale midfielder Kengo Nakamura and Shimizu S-Pulse forward Shinji Okazaki. In the biennial tournament, Japan will play China on 6 February, Hong Kong on 11 February and Korea Republic on 14 February in Tokyo.