The JSA announced earlier today that the first three days of the upcoming Natsu Basho (Summer Grand Sumo Tournament) will go on behind closed doors because of the ongoing COVID-19 crisis in Tokyo.
The event will take place at Tokyo’s Ryogoku Kokugikan from May 9-23.
The reason behind the decision is the state of emergency that is in place for Tokyo other prefectures experiencing a surge in coronavirus infections.
The Japan Sumo Association had initially planned to allow up to 5,000 spectators each day, roughly half the venue’s capacity, before the latest emergency declaration.
The May competition will be the second 15-day meet to open without spectators, following last year’s Spring Grand Sumo Tournament, which was moved from its usual home in Osaka and held completely behind closed doors.