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FIGURE SKATING | Yuzuru Hanyu to Skip Upcoming Grand Prix Series

Ed Odeven




Yuzuru Hanyu, a two-time world champion and two-time defending Olympic champion, will skip the 2020-21 ISU Grand Prix Series. The fan favorite made the announcement on Friday, August 28, citing health concerns.


“There is no conclusive evidence about the relationship between bronchial asthma and COVID-19, so it’s difficult to make a judgment,” the Sendai native said in a statement. “But there is information that for those with asthma, contracting COVID-19 will make the condition worse, so I need to be as cautious as possible.


“I believe we should not create opportunities to spread the infection. If my withdrawal can help protect against the spread of infection, it may become one action which will contribute to stopping the spread of infection.”


Hanyu was expected to compete at the NHK Trophy, a Grand Prix Series event, in Osaka from November 27-29.


The figure skating legend captured the men’s title at the 2014 Sochi Olympics and 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Games.



RELATED COVERAGE: FIGURE SKATING | Yuzuru Hanyu Wins ISU’s Most Valuable Skater Award


Author:  Ed Odeven

Follow Ed on JAPAN Forward’s [Japan Sports Notebook] here on Sundays,  in [Odds and Evens] here during the week, and Twitter @itsjapanforward.


Ed Odeven is a longtime sports journalist who previously worked for The Japan Times as its chief basketball reporter for nearly 14 years. He also covered a wide range of other sports for the newspaper, including at the 2008 Beijing Olympics and 2012 London Games. A graduate of Arizona State University, Odeven worked for several newspapers in the Grand Canyon State before moving to Japan. He has freelanced for dozens of media outlets around the world.