The Japan Rugby Football Union has decided not to take part in an eight-team international tournament involving the European Six Nations and Fiji later this year, a source said Thursday.
Complications caused by the coronavirus pandemic prompted the JRFU to opt out of the European competition, which is planned to run from November to December, according to the source.
With Japan heavily restricting the entry of foreign passport holders amid the pandemic, members of the Brave Blossoms coaching staff have been kept out of the country, making it difficult to hold a domestic camp in preparation for the tournament.
Teams contesting the competition were to be divided into two pools, with Japan to be grouped with Scotland, France and Italy, according to media reports.
The JRFU will look at other activities for the national team later this year, including the possibility of a test match.
The Brave Blossoms have not played a test since their march to the quarterfinals of the World Cup on home soil last year.
They had scheduled summer tests with England and autumn tests against Scotland and Ireland, but all have been canceled due to the pandemic.