Six wrestlers were pulled from New Japan Pro-Wrestling’s show Friday due to concerns about COVID-19.  New Japan announced the decision early Friday.

It says it was made after a participant in the fourth match on Thursday’s card at Korakuen Hall was found to have a high temperature. New Japan did not specify who that wrestler is.

The match in question from Thursday’s card was a 6-man tag team match. Toru Yano, Satoshi Kojima, and Tomoaki Honma defeated Minoru Suzuki, Taichi, and TAKA Michinoku.

“In accordance with COVID-19 protocols, and out of an abundance of caution, the wrestler, and all six participants in yesterday’s match, have been removed from this evening’s New Year’s Golden Series night two card,” New Japan announced on its English language website.

New Japan made the following changes to Friday’s card:

  • Hiroyoshi Tenzan, Togi Makabe & Tomoaki Honma vs Minoru Suzuki, Taichi & DOUKI was changed to Master Wato, Ryusuke Taguchi & Hiroyoshi Tenzan vs. El Desperado, Yoshinobu Kanemaru & DOUKI
  • Master Wato, Ryusuke Taguchi & Hiroyoshi Tenzan vs El Desperado, Yoshinobu Kanemaru & TAKA Michinoku was changed to Tomohiro Ishii, Hirooki Goto, YOSHI-HASHI & YOH vs EVIL, Yujiro Takahashi, Dick Togo & SHO.
  • Tomohiro Ishii, Hirooki Goto, YOSHI-HASHI & YOH vs EVIL, Yujiro Takahashi, Dick Togo & SHO was changed to Kazuchika Okada, Hiroshi Tanahashi & Togi Makabe vs Tetsuya Naito, SANADA & Shingo Takagi.

Friday’s show will be available on-demand on NJPW World starting on Saturday. Thursday’s card was the start of New Japan’s Golden Series tour, which is part of the celebration of New Japan’s 50th anniversary.

More card changes could be announced over the weekend. New Japan has Golden Series cards scheduled for Saturday and Sunday. Those will be followed by shows on Tuesday and Friday.

None of those shows will be broadcast on NJPW World. The Golden Series card on Saturday, January 29 will be the next one to be broadcasted on NJPW World.

New Japan just returned to touring after three major shows earlier this month: the two Wrestle Kingdom 16 cards in Tokyo Dome and a third that featured matches between wrestlers from New Japan and Pro-Wrestling NOAH.

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