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US basketball player quits Korean league over coronavirus

Allen Durham (left). Yonhap
Allen Durham (left). Yonhap

A US basketball player decided to quit playing in the professional league here due to fast-spreading novel coronavirus, his club said Wednesday, sparking concerns of a possible exodus of foreign athletes in the country.

Busan KT Sonicboom of the Korean Basketball League said that Allen Durham will not play the remainder of the season and will return home to the United States on Thursday.

The Sonicboom said Durham, who joined the team last month, decided to leave South Korea after the country reported a surge in COVID-19 cases.

South Korea has reported 1,261 novel coronavirus cases, with 12 deaths.

Durham is the first foreign player in the KBL to quit the league due to the novel coronavirus outbreak.

The Sonicboom said the team's other foreign player, Byron Mullens, also considered leaving South Korea, but decided to stay.

The KBL earlier this week announced that its teams will play the rest of the 2019-2020 season behind closed doors due to the spread of the new coronavirus.

In their 54-game schedule this season, the 10 KBL teams have so far played between 40 and 42 games. The regular season is scheduled to wrap up on March 31. (Yonhap)
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