Soccer: Gamba coronavirus infections force 2nd cancellation

©Kyodo News

Novel coronavirus infections within J-League first-division club Gamba Osaka have forced the team to call off Saturday's home game against Kashima Antlers, the league announced Thursday.

As of Thursday, five players and a Gamba team staff member had tested positive for the virus, and the extent of its spread within the club had yet to be determined. Gamba on Wednesday were forced to call off their game at Nagoya Grampus -- the first match put on hold this season due to the coronavirus.

Gamba said they will suspend activities for several days while local health authorities identify those who have come in close contact with the infected individuals.

Starting this season, clubs deemed responsible for cancellations will be declared 3-0 losers of those games if they are not rescheduled and played.