On Apr. 26 it was announced that this year's National High School Championships have been canceled. Isao Yasuda, head coach of two-time National High School Ekiden champion Osaka Kunei Joshi Gakuin H.S., can't how hard the situation has thrown him for a loop. "I've never experienced something like this before," he said. "As a coach, what is the right advice to give my students?"
Yasuda said that while the team hasn't been able to do anything together while schools have been shut down for the last few weeks, its athletes have each been training on their own. "The National High School Ekiden is in December and that's one of our biggest goals, especially for our third-years," he said. "All we can do is believe that the race is going to be held."
The city of Osaka has announced that it will extend its closure of all public schools until May 10.
translated by Brett Larner