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Old 2016-12-16, 16:05   Link #1
神の金槌 (ユダ=マーテル)
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Cainta, Rizal, Philippines
Mai Ball (manga)

Title: Mai Ball
Author: Sora Inoue (JAM!!, Real Bout High School)
Genres: Comedy, Ecchi, Sports, Seinen
First Release: 2012
Synopsis: Mai has been helping out her childhood friend, Kunimitsu, every morning with soccer practice ever since they were little. After years of practice, Kunimitsu has been MVP for 2 years in a row at the middle school nationals. One day, Reika—one of Kunimitsu's admirers—witnesses the two childhood friends practicing, and is shocked by Mai's ability to keep up. Determined to prove herself to Kunimitsu, Reika challenges Mai to a soccer challenge!

Caught between her childhood crush and new competition, will Mai be able to hold her composure? With a tendency to get too nervous or fantasize about Kunimitsu, Mai has a hard time playing soccer outside of practice. Can she stop her lewd fantasies long enough to beat Reika?

So I picked this title up as I was told it could make a good women's sports anime in the future. I decided to create a thread about this FABULOUS (lol) manga that is equal parts LOOD, funny, and intense rolled all into one! I have doubts about it though, but I'll keep close tabs on this title, especially on the realistic side of things. It does seem realistic to me, but that's because I only picked up football recently.

Calling our resident sports experts at AnimeSuki to see for themselves whether or not the moves, plays, and strategies featured in this manga are realistic enough to be performed on a regular basis at the professional level.

The real reason I picked this up is that Mai Ball came out just a year after Japan won the FIFA Women's World Cup in 2011 and two years before they won the Under-17 edition in 2014. In addition, Japan also made back-to-back Finals appearances in both editions of the FIFA Women's World Cup in 2015 and 2016, respectively. The senior women's team lost to the US, while the U-17 team lost to North Korea. Japanese female youth players IRL thankfully look like your average Japanese girl, with quite a few outliers who are both pretty and skilled (2-time U-17 FW Fuka Nagano won the Golden Ball award this year, and she's actually quite the cutie off the pitch, and so is her former teammate from the 2014 team if you REALLY stretch your definition of cute, GK Mamiko Matsumoto, who won the Golden Glove award that year) so I think it is quite easy to market an anime adaptation of Mai Ball to both otakus and sports fans (anime or RL) alike.

Maybe they can pitch it like, "Look, we have cute girls playing football, but we're not doing this because we want to shit on the beautiful game; I mean, you know Japanese women are the best, right? Guess what, they are also crazy good at football IN REAL LIFE, not just in manga and anime; they're even better at it than the men if you take current World Rankings into account. So only cute girls playing football, but no superpowers, just pure mad skillz!" Japan is #8 in the FIFA Women's World Rankings, but is only #45 in the FIFA Men's World Rankings. There is considerable difference in the level of competition between the two gender divisions, but still. Yet who knows? Maybe they can use an anime adaptation of Mai Ball to advertise the Japanese national soccer teams for the 2018 FIFA Men's World Cup, the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup, and the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

Last edited by judasmartel; 2016-12-19 at 14:17.
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