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Tran's Naturalization Troubles

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Pairs world bronze medalist Mervin Tran has been trying to gain Japanese citizenship (he's Canadian) so he can compete in the 2014 Olympics with partner Narumi Takahashi. But the plans are not going as smoothly as he'd hoped.

According to The Mainichi, the Japanese government does not want to approve Tran's application on the basis of special services to Japan:

A ministry official, however, said Tuesday that because Tran had no history of residency in Japan, it would be difficult to grant him an exception.

"Having considered the case, we just found no precedent," the official said. (The minister, vice minister, and parliamentary secretary) all agree with the way we see it."

It is unclear whether this is the official ruling or if there is hope still for Tran. I'll update as new articles come out.