Brazilian football legend Zico runs Olympic Torch Relay in Ibaraki

In 2002, Zico was appointed as Japan's national team coach and led the team to the 2006 World Cup in Germany, while he is currently the technical director of Kashima Antlers.

Brazil football legend Zico had joined Japanese club Kashima Antlers back in 1991 as a player, and stayed with the club until July 1994 (File Photo).   -  K. Murali Kumar

The Olympic Torch Relay kicked off its leg in Ibaraki Prefecture on Sunday as Brazilian football legend Zico ran as one of the last torchbearers in Kashima city.

The attacking midfielder was famous for his creative playmaking style, technical skills and goal scoring ability. As the former Brazil national team member, Zico went to three FIFA World Cups and was part of the 1982 squad -- widely considered as one of the best teams in the world.

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Zico had joined Kashima Antlers (previously known as Sumitomo Metal Kicking Team) in 1991 as a player, and stayed with the club until July 1994.  In 2002, he was appointed as Japan's national football team coach and led the team to the 2006 World Cup in Germany. He is currently the technical director of Kashima Antlers.

The 2021 Tokyo Olympics torch relay is scheduled to visit all 47 prefectures of Japan over 121 days. It will end on July 23rd at the Opening Ceremony in Tokyo.

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