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Japanese Boxing Commission suspends all events in March

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No word yet as to what will become of the 16 scheduled cards

BOX-JPN Photo credit should read CHARLY TRIBALLEAU/AFP via Getty Images

Well, this is worrying.

In response to the growing coronavirus outbreak, the Japanese Boxing Commission (JBC) and Japanese Professional Boxing Association (JPBA) are “suspending all boxing during a 1 month period, nationwide,” starting on March 1st. Tomorrow’s Hajime no Ippo tournament semifinals at Korakuen Hall will be the final event until the ban is lifted; according to Asian Boxing, “there is a chance that it will be extended if it needs to be.”

Job fairs, political conventions, eSports tournaments, concerts, and more have been canceled as Japan struggles to contain what is rapidly becoming a worldwide epidemic. To make matters worse, International Olympic Committee member Dick Pound (whatever joke you have in mind, you are not the first) “estimated there is a three-month window — perhaps a two-month one — to decide the fate of the Tokyo Olympics.”

The one bit of silver lining is that March was fairly barren as far as major events; there were no world title fights on the docket, just former champs and challengers like Masayuki Kuroda and Shingo Wake in non-championship affairs.