ATP Tour cancels play for 6 weeks

The ATP suspended play in two active events in Kazakhstan and South Africa to begin a six-week suspension of the men’s professional tennis tour due to escalating health and safety issues arising from the global outbreak of COVID-19.

All ATP Tour and ATP Challenger Tour events scheduled through April 20 are canceled and will not be played.

“This is not a decision that was taken lightly and it represents a great loss for our tournaments, players, and fans worldwide. However we believe this is the responsible action needed at this time in order to protect the health and safety of our players, staff, the wider tennis community and general public health in the face of this global pandemic,” Andrea Gaudenzi, ATP Chairman said in a statement. “The worldwide nature of our sport and the international travel required presents significant risks and challenges in today’s circumstances, as do the increasingly restrictive directives issued by local authorities. We continue to monitor this on a daily basis and we look forward to the Tour resuming when the situation improves. In the meantime, our thoughts and well-wishes are with all those that have been affected by the virus.”

Including the recent cancellation of the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells, Calif., additional events called off include the Miami Open, Fayez Sarofim & Co U.S. Men’s Clay Court Championships in Houston, Grand Prix Hassan II in Marrakech, Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters, Barcelona Open Banc Sabadell, and the Hungarian Open in Budapest.

On Wednesday, the World Health Organization declared on Wednesday that COVID-19 has become a global pandemic, which was followed by a 30-day travel restriction announced by the United States for foreign nationals from 26 European countries.

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–Field Level Media (@FieldLevelMedia)