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Baseball: KBO League reduce capacity to 30% amid rising COVID-19 cases

FILE PHOTO: Socially-distanced fans wearing face masks as a measure to avoid the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), watch a KBO baseball game between LG Twins and Doosan Bears at a baseball stadium in Seoul, South Korea, July 26, 2020. REUTERS/Heo Ran

(Reuters) - The final round of South Korea’s KBO League post-season will have crowds reduced to 30% capacity after the government imposed stricter social distancing rules on Tuesday in an effort to dampen a spike in new COVID-19 cases.

Fans returned to stadiums in August at a reduced capacity which was later increased to 50% by the Korea Baseball Organization during the post-season, with a brief period in between when arenas were shut due to a sudden spike in cases.

However, starting Thursday, authorities will enforce tighter curbs after the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA) reported 230 cases, the highest since early September.

The best-of-seven championship round between regular season champions NC Dinos and playoff winners Doosan Bears begins later on Tuesday, followed by the second game on Wednesday, with all games to be played at the Gocheok Sky Dome in Seoul.

From Friday’s Game 3 onwards the crowd is set to be capped at 5,100, compared with the 8,200 fans that viewed the playoff series between the Bears and KT Wiz.

Reporting by Rohith Nair in Bengaluru; editing by Richard Pullin

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