Japanese Olympic swimmer apologises after admitting affair

Japanese Olympic swimmer Daiya Seto apologises to his wife and children after he is caught at a ‘love hotel’ with another woman and suspended from competing

 

  • Daiya Seto, 26, had his movements chronicled by a gossip magazine last month
  • He resigned as captain of Japan’s Olympic swim team after admitting infidelity
  • Four-time Olympic champion has apologised for his ‘irresponsible behaviour’

Japan’s top Olympic swimmer Daiya Seto has apologised to his wife and children after he was caught at a ‘love hotel’ with another woman and suspended from competing.  

The four-time world champion, 26, was caught out in September after a gossip magazine chronicled his movements as he took his girlfriend to a hotel just hours before picking up his daughters from nursery.

Seto, who resigned as captain of Japan’s Olympic swim team after admitting to the infidelity, apologised for his ‘irresponsible behaviour’ in a statement on Tuesday.

He added that he accepted the sanctions from the Japan Swimming Federation which include bans from official training as well as events both home and abroad.

The athlete is married to fellow swimmer Yuka Mabuchi, 25, and the couple have two young daughters together. 

Japan’s top Olympic swimmer Daiya Seto (pictured with his wife Yuka Mabuchi) has apologised to his family after he was caught at a ‘love hotel’ with another woman

Seto, who resigned as captain of Japan’s Olympic swim team after admitting to the infidelity, apologised for his ‘irresponsible behaviour’ 

In a statement, Seto said: ‘How can I apologise? I have been asking myself if I can.

‘But I think my apology is to continue swimming, restoring the trust of my family, who have been deeply hurt by my irresponsible behaviour.

‘I would like to seriously face swimming with the determination to start over so that my family and everyone will recognise me as a swimmer again.’

He added: ‘I’m really sorry.’   

The scandal has tarnished Seto’s reputation and he has already agreed to sever ties with sponsor All Nippon Airways – his country’s national airline.

It also means that Seto – the reigning world champion in the 200m and 400m individual medley – will miss a national competition in December.

But he will still be allowed to take part in the Olympic Games next summer and can also practise in private, the swimming federation said.

Japanese swimming officials told local media that Seto’s actions had violated the code of sportsmanship (Seto pictured with his wife and one of their daughters)

The athlete is married to fellow swimmer Yuka Mabuchi, 25, (pictured) and the couple have two young children together

Seto will now have to complete the Japan Olympic Committee’s ‘integrity education’ programme among other courses, according to his management.

The tabloid expose and the federation’s punishment has become a subject of lively discussion on daytime TV talk shows.

Japanese swimming officials told local media that Seto’s actions had violated the code of sportsmanship and harmed the honour of the federation.

The Tokyo Olympics was originally scheduled for summer 2020 but the coronavirus pandemic forced a one-year delay.

Officials are yet to announce exactly how the postponed event will be held and at what cost. 

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