The Hanshin Tigers have banned the use of balloons due to the potential spread of coronavirus ©Getty Images

Nippon Professional Baseball team the Hanshin Tigers have asked fans to not participate in their traditional balloon launch due to fears of spreading coronavirus. 

For decades, fans of the Japanese club have inflated cylindrical balloons prior to the team batting in the seventh inning.

The fans then sing Rokko Oroshi, their victory song, before releasing the balloons. 

"As a team, we wanted to do whatever we could," said a spokesperson of the club, according to Kyodo News

Many clubs have copied the Tigers' tradition, with it being a popular spectacle across the country.

A statement asked all fans to not launch the balloons at any of the Tigers' practice or pre-season games.

In May 2009, the Tigers asked fans to halt their balloon launches during the spread of a new influenza strain.

The Yokohama DeNA BayStars today followed suit and became the second Japanese baseball team to halt the launches due to concerns over the spread of coronavirus.