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Grand Prix final cancelled after Japan shuts borders


Figure skating

Grand Prix final cancelled after Japan shuts borders

epa09609251 Anastasia Mishina and Aleksandr Gallimov of Russia perform in the Exhibition Program at the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating 2021 Rostelecom Cup in Sochi, Russia, 28 November 2021. EPA-EFE/Anatoly Maltsev
By Reuters
02 Dec 2021 0

TOKYO, Dec 2 (Reuters) - The Japan Skating Federation (JSF) said on Thursday that figure skating's Grand Prix final, one of the key events leading into the Winter Olympics, has been cancelled after the country closed its borders to non-Japanese visitors.

Japan took some of the strictest steps globally by closing its borders to new foreign entrants for about a month in light of the emergence of the new coronavirus variant, Omicron.

The Grand Prix final, which was scheduled for the western city of Osaka from Dec. 9-12, is seen as a key step on the road to the Winter Olympics, set for Feb. 4-20 in Beijing.

“In light of the government suspending the admission of non-Japanese visitors as announced on Nov. 29, we are having to cancel,” the JSF said in a statement.

Americans Nathan Chen, Vincent Zhou and Jason Brown, and Russia’s Mikhail Kolyada were all on the roster for the men’s event, along with Japan’s Yuma Kagiyama and Shoma Uno.

The women’s singles were set to be contested by Japan’s Kaori Sakamoto and five Russian skaters.

(Reporting by Elaine Lies; Editing by Peter Rutherford )

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