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How Pokemon hunting cost Japanese star athlete 500,000 yen

olympics 2016 Updated: Aug 03, 2016 19:28 IST
Pokemon Go

FILE - In this Oct. 30, 2015 file photo, Japan's Kohei Uchimura poses in the Walk of Champions with his sixth gold medal after winning the men's all-around final competition at the World Artistic Gymnastics championships at the SSE Hydro Arena in Glasgow, Scotland. Japanese Olympic gymnast Uchimura may be a record six-time world champion, but he won't be encountering much success in his "Pokemon Go" efforts after running up a huge roaming bill in Rio. Uchimura was stunned to receive a 500,000 yen ($4,900) mobile phone bill after playing the popular augmented-reality game, Kyodo news agency reported Tuesday, Aug. 2, 2016. (AP Photo/Matthias Schrader, File)(AP Photo)

Japanese gymnastics star Kohei Uchimura was left counting the cost of his recent addiction to Pokemon Go at the Rio Olympics.

The reigning Olympic and world all-around champion became hooked on the smartphone game after touching down in Brazil to prepare for the defence of his title.

But to Uchimura’s horror he was hit with a 500,000 yen ($5,000) bill after discovering that he did not have a flat rate for overseas data usage.

“500,000 yen...” the defending six-time world champion was quoted by Kyodo news agency as saying.

Team-mate Kenzo Shirai confided that Uchimura was shellshocked by the charges.

“He looked dead at the team meal that day,” Shirai said.

Uchimura, though, escaped the hefty bill after contacting his phone company to plead his case, eventually only having to pay 3,000 yen.

“I really lucked out,” Uchimura said.