Japanese baseball, soccer aiming for April restarts

Nippon Professional Baseball Organisation and the J.League received advice Monday from medical experts during the fourth meeting of the joint panel that was formed to assess impacts of the coranavirus pandemic.

Mitsuo Kaku, a professor in infection control and prevention at Tohoku Medical and Pharmaceutical University, said the sports officials should be targeting a start date at the end of April.

NPB Commissioner Atsushi Saito said the revised timing would be OK “if the situation stays the same and our preparation is fully ready."'

Earlier Monday, Japan Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told a parliamentary session that a postponement of the Tokyo Olympics would be necessary if the games cannot be held in a complete way.

Abe was speaking hours after the the International Olympic Committee said for the first time that it was considering a postponement of the games, which are scheduled to start July 24.

Worldwide, nearly 340,000 people have been infected and more than 14,700 have died from the virus that first emerged in central China late last year.

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