The outbreak of Covid-19 is affecting every aspect of Japan’s life and society, including sports. Sumo wrestling tournaments that many expect are now at risk of being canceled.
On April 10, the Japan Sumo Association announced that a wrestler from this association had tested positive for the new strain of corona virus. This marks the first case of infection in the country’s long-standing sport. It is known that wrestlers have a fever since Saturday last week (4/4) and a medical facility in Tokyo first test negative on 08/4. However, the second test on 10/4, the result was positive. Other personal details of this wrestler are currently not disclosed. The other wrestlers in the association are still healthy and have no abnormal signs.
Before that, the organization was forced to change the schedule and format of major tournaments due to the outbreak of the Covid-19 outbreak.
In March, the Japan Sumo Association decided to host the Spring Grand Sumo Tournament in Osaka in an audience-free state. For the first time in history, the famous Spring Grand Sumo tournament in Japan this week will take place without the audience despite sold out. The move came after the Japanese government asked to consider suspending crowded events to prevent the Corona virus from spreading further when there were at least 900 cases in the country.
Meanwhile, the opening day of the Summer Grand Sumo Tournament in Tokyo has been delayed for 2 weeks to 24/5. The Japan Sumo Association adds that the tournament can continue to be held without spectators or even completely canceled depending on the situation of the pandemic.
This dangerous epidemic of rapid spread has affected many sports leagues in Japan, including the J-League national football championship, which had to postpone every fight until March 15. . The rugby league has also announced a delay of 16 matches due to disease concerns.