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Sports equipment maker Yonex's founder dies at 95

Minoru Yoneyama's rackets used by stars Billie Jean King and Martina Navratilova

Yonex founder Minoru Yoneyama in June 1999 (Photo by Yutaka Fukuda)

TOKYO -- Minoru Yoneyama, a former prisoner of war who founded Japanese sports equipment maker Yonex, a favorite among pro tennis players, died on Saturday at the age of 95.

Yonex's rackets have been used by such tennis stars as Billie Jean King, Martina Navratilova and Kimiko Date, garnering worldwide attention for a company that started out making fishing gear.

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