Wimbledon tournament canceled
The Wimbledon tournament has been canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the first time that the oldest Grand Slam tournament has been canceled since the Second World War.
The All England Club made the announcement following an emergency meeting on Wednesday.
The tournament was to take place on the grass lawns of the club in the suburbs of London from June 29 to July 12. The next edition of the tournament will take place from June 28 to July 11, 2021.
ATP and WTA also postponed the start of their activities on Wednesday. The two circuits were scheduled to resume action on June 7, but this date was pushed back to July 13, bringing the number of tournaments in the highest circuits affected by COVID-19 to more than 30.
The Challenger and ITF circuits also postponed the start of their activities until mid-July.
bringing the number of elite tennis tournaments affected by the coronavirus to more than 30. The top tours already had been on hold through June 7. Lower-level events on the Challenger Tour and ITF World Tennis Tour also are called off through mid-July now .
Wimbledon was first contested in 1877 and has been an annual classic ever since. It had only two interruptions, from 1915 to 1918 and from 1940 to 1945, during the First and Second World Wars.
“We strongly believed that the tournament was only canceled in times of world wars,” All England Club president Ian Hewitt said in a statement. But after an exhaustive study of all the possible scenarios, we believe that in the circumstances, to cancel the tournament is the best decision to make. We will now focus on how to use Wimbledon’s resources to help those in our communities and elsewhere. ”
The tournament adds its name to the growing list of sports events canceled in 2020 due to Wuhan pneumonia, including the Tokyo Olympics, postponed by 12 months.
Wimbledon is the first major tournament to be canceled due to the pandemic. The Internationaux de France were postponed from the end of May to the end of September. Shortly after the All England Club’s announcement, the American Tennis Association (USTA) announced that it still plans to hold the United States Open as scheduled in New York from August 31 to September 13.
The All England Club decision means that Novak Djokovic and Simona Halep will not have a chance to defend their 2019 title.
“We are experiencing something much bigger than tennis and Wimbledon will be back,” Halep wrote on social media. It also means that I will hold the title longer. ”
It also means that Roger Federer will be denied one of the best opportunities to add to his total 20 Grand Slam titles, including eight at Wimbledon, a record. The Swiss lost the fifth set tie to Djokovic last year after taking advantage of two championship balls.
Federer, who turns 39 in August, is recovering from knee surgery and plans to resume action with the arrival of field tournaments.
In a statement sent last week, the All England Club said delaying the event posed great risks to the playing surface. The club also said it did not want to play in camera.
The tennis season has already been greatly affected by the coronavirus, with nearly 20 tournaments canceled or postponed.
Daily life has been affected in many ways by the pandemic and the world of sport has not been spared. The NHL, MLS, NBA and Major Baseball seasons are suspended indefinitely; the Kentucky Derby and the Indianapolis 500 were postponed for several months; while Euro 2020 has been postponed for a year.