J.League Match Canceled due to Coronavirus Cases

Sports

Tokyo, July 27 (Jiji Press)--A Japan Professional Football League (J.League) match slated for Sunday was called off due to the discovery of novel coronavirus cases, the first cancellation since the league resumed official matches in late June.

The match between Nagoya Grampus and Sanfrecce Hiroshima, both belonging to the J1 top division, was scheduled to take place at Edion Stadium Hiroshima in the western Japan city of Hiroshima. A substitute date for the game will be decided later.

Nagoya Grampus, based in the central prefecture of Aichi, on Saturday announced defender Kazuya Miyahara's infection with the coronavirus. But 17 team members, including players, moved to Hiroshima on the day for the match, because none of them was confirmed to have had close contact with the infected player, according to the team.

However, polymerase chain reaction tests conducted on the team members later on Saturday found that two of them--midfielder Shuto Watanabe and a staff member--are infected with the virus. The two are showing no symptoms of the virus.

"We decided to cancel the match after holding discussions, due to the possibility of the game not being held in a completely safe environment," J.League Chairman Mitsuru Murai said. Nagoya Grampus said Sunday night that no one was judged to have come into close contact with Watanabe or the infected staff member.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press