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Ibushi diagnosed with aspirational pneumonia, status for Tokyo Dome title shot TBD

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Kota Ibushi looks at the new IWGP World Heavyweight Championship title belt New Japan Pro Wrestling

Over the weekend, New Japan issued an update on the health of Kota Ibushi. After initially saying he was sidelined with side effects from the COVID vaccine, they clarified he’d tested negative for the coronavirus. Now they’re reporting his illness isn’t related to COVID or the vaccination he received for it.

They’re also not sure he’ll be available for Wrestle Grand Slam this Sunday (July 25) at the Tokyo Dome.

Here’s their latest statement:

Kota Ibushi has been out of competition since the beginning of the Summer Struggle series due to illness. After careful investigation and thorough assessment, he has been diagnosed with aspiration pneumonia.

Ibushi’s illness was originally reported as a result of side effects arising from his COVID-19 vaccination. Aspiration pneumonia has no connection to COVID vaccinations, and Ibushi’s illness is not a result of his inoculation. We apologise for any misunderstanding. Ibushi has also tested negative for COVID-19.

In order to give Ibushi more time to make a full in ring recovery, he will be absent from cards on July 22 and 23 in Osaka, as well as July 24 in Nagoya. A final decision on his participation at Wrestle Grand Slam on July 25 will be made after assessing Ibushi’s recovery.

As a result changes will be made to the cards in Osaka and Nagoya as outlined below. We apologise to fans who were looking forward to seeing Ibushi wrestle.

New Japan Pro-Wrestling deeply apologises for the concern and inconvenience caused by this news. We appreciate your understanding, and hope you join us in wishing Ibushi the very best in his recovery.

Aspirational pneumonia is a lung infection caused by inhaling oral or gastric particles.

Tomoaki Honma will replace Ibushi as Master Wato’s partner in tag matches against Shingo Takagi & BUSHI on July 22 & 23 in Osaka, and July 24 in Nagayo. He’s still scheduled to challenge Takagi for the IWGP World title at Wrestle Grand Slam. If he’s cleared for that, it will be his first match since July 2.