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A bowler warms up Sunday during the Asian-American Friendship Bowling Tournament at Yongsan Lanes, on Yongsan Garrison in South Korea.

A bowler warms up Sunday during the Asian-American Friendship Bowling Tournament at Yongsan Lanes, on Yongsan Garrison in South Korea. (T.D. Flack / S&S)

YONGSAN GARRISION, South Korea — Language barriers were not too much a problem Sunday during an Asian-American Friendship Bowling Tournament at Yongsan Lanes.

After all, “bowling is bowling,” said participant Chief Warrant Officer Chris Jackson, one of 86 American, South Korean and Japanese bowlers competing for prizes.

Tournament director Jim Thorn said a Korean-American tournament was held in 2004 but he decided to invite Japanese bowlers after developing a friendship with Hiroshi Tsuda, president, publisher and editor of Bowling Journal Co., based in Japan.

Tsuda and managing editor Kaori Muramatsu brought 13 “senior citizen” bowlers from Fukuoka, Osaka, Hiroshima and Tokyo, Muramatsu said.

Tsuda said the oldest bowler was an 82-year-old man with a 200 bowling average.

Jackson said he joined the tournament because “I like to do a lot of tournament shooting.” Names were drawn randomly to create the teams and Jackson was the only American on his squad.

Communication didn’t seem to be to troublesome. Each strike sparked cheers and high-fives among the teammates.

And Jackson said he hoped his luck from Saturday night — when he nabbed his first “over 700” series, bowling a 256, 209 and 266 — would carry into Sunday’s games.

“I want to win,” he said.


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