Wimbledon postponed over coronavirus pandemic
The Coronavirus pandemic has wreaked disruption on global sport as Wimbledon organisers scrapped the grass court Grand Slam for the first time since World War II.
The cancellation of the only grass court major at the All England Club leaves the season in disarray, with no tennis due to be played until mid-July.
Wimbledon was due to run for two weeks from June 29, with Novak Djokovic and Simona Halep set to defend their singles titles.
But tournament chiefs bowed to the inevitable on Wednesday, saying in a statement that they had made the decision with “great regret”.
All England Club chairman Ian Hewitt said the decision had not been taken lightly.
“It has weighed heavily on our minds that the staging of The Championships has only been interrupted previously by world wars,” he said.
“But, following thorough and extensive consideration of all scenarios, we believe that it is a measure of this global crisis that it is ultimately the right decision to cancel this year’s Championships.”
The cancellation of Wimbledon could mean multiple champions Federer, Serena Williams and Venus Williams have played at the All England Club for the final time.
Federer and Serena will be nearly 40 by the time of the 2021 championships and Venus will be 41.
Serena, beaten in last year’s final by Halep, is stuck on 23 Grand Slam singles titles — agonisingly one away from equalling Margaret Court’s record.
The French Tennis Federation provoked widespread anger with its unilateral decision to move the French Open from its original May 24 start date to begin on September 20.
That puts the start only one week after the planned date of the US Open men’s final.
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