Japan send home four basketball players from Asian Games amid prostitution scandal

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Japan has sent home four of its men’s basketball squad from the Asian Games after the quartet allegedly paid women for sex during an evening out.

The players – named by officials as Takuya Hashimoto, Keita Imamura, Yuya Nagayoshi and Takuma Sato – are said to have headed into Jakarta in national team clothing following Thursday’s 82-71 win over Qatar.

In a news conference, Japan chef de mission Yasuhiro Yamashita said the four “spent the night in a hotel with women”, while Yuko Mitsuya, chief of the Japan Basketball Association, declared that further sanctions were likely to be forthcoming.

“I just feel a sense of shame. We deeply apologise and intend to give the athletes thorough guidance from now on,” said Yamashita.

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“In what ways can we prevent these incidents?

“The Japanese Olympic Committee has already launched an integrity education [programme], but as the head of our sports delegation, if we fail to execute this, we will keep betraying the Japanese people. This is unacceptable.”

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