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Heading into the women's hockey tournament at the PyeongChang Winter Olympics, Japan is trying to stay focused on itself and not get distracted by its opponents, the team's coach and players said on Friday.
The world's ninth-ranked team, affectionately called "Smile Japan", is in Group B of the women's competition that starts on Saturday, reports Yonhap news agency.
There has been plenty of hoopla surrounding the joint Korean team, the first of its kind in any sports at an Olympics. And given the sporting rivalry between South Korea and Japan that stretches for decades, the two country's clash is sure to generate almost a circus-like atmosphere.
"We just have to concentrate on what we've been doing all along," Koike said after practice at Kwandong.
"I don't think anyone is feeling any extra pressure to be facing the joint Korean team."
The Korean team has 35 players -- 23 from the South and 12 from the North -- but only 22 players can dress for the games.
"I don't think this affects the players that we've been keeping an eye on," Yamanaka added.
"We have three games in the group stage, and we don't think any game will be an easy one," she said.
"With Korea especially, they'll be playing on home ice. We just want to play our best."
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)