Omicron Forces Cancellation of Figure Skating GP Final in Japan

Sports

Tokyo, Dec. 2 (Jiji Press)--The Japan Skating Federation on Thursday announced the cancellation of this year’s Grand Prix Final, slated to be held in the country later this month, as the Japanese government has banned entries by foreigners in principle due to the spread of the omicron variant of the novel coronavirus.

The 2021 Grand Prix Final was scheduled to take place in the city of Kadoma, Osaka Prefecture, western Japan, from Dec. 9.

The prestigious annual international competition brings together top six point-earning figure skaters from each category in six grand prix events. According to the Japanese federation, a total of 172 people, including foreign-based Japanese skaters and staff members, were to visit Japan for this year’s competition.

From Japan, male skaters Shoma Uno and Yuma Kagiyama, female skater Kaori Sakamoto and the pair of Riku Miura and Ryuichi Kihara had qualified for the Grand Prix Final.

U.S. legend Nathan Chen, a three-time World Figure Skating Championships winner for men’s singles, and top female Russian skater Kamila Valieva were among foreign athletes who had been scheduled to take part in this year’s Grand Prix Final.

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Jiji Press