• The Associated Press

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The Japanese women’s soccer team has canceled a tour to North America because of the swine flu outbreak.

The team was scheduled to play the United States in Frisco, Texas, on May 20 and in Sandy City, Utah, three days later before taking on Canada in Toronto on May 25.

Japan’s health ministry confirmed the fourth case of swine flu on Sunday, a day after the country’s first three were reported. The ministry said the fourth case is a teenager who recently returned from Canada on a high school trip with the three others.

The JFA said it may have to pay damages for breach of contract.

“This is an unfortunate situation, but one that we had absolutely no control over,” said U.S. Soccer president Sunil Gulati. “We have been assured that the risk to the participating teams is exceptionally low, but we accept the Japanese Federation’s decision not to travel.”

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