The organizers of Wimbledon on Wednesday decided to cancel the oldest Tennis tournament in the world as the Coronavirus pandemic continues to wreak havoc in the sporting calendar. This will be the first time since World War II when one of the most prestigious tennis competition, founded in 1877 – Wimbledon will not be held. Also Read - Odisha Lockdown: COVID-19 Patients Can Now be Admitted to Private Hospitals For Treatment

The cancellation of the only grasscourt Grand Slam tournament at the All England Club would leave the tennis season in disarray after the French Open was controversially moved and all events cancelled until June 7. Also Read - IPL 2020: From Cheerleaders to WAGS, Things You Will Not See During T20 Tournament in UAE Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

“It is with great regret that the main board of the All England Club (AELTC) and the committee of management of the Championships have today decided that The Championships 2020 will be cancelled due to public health concerns linked to the coronavirus epidemic,” the organisers said in a statement on Wednesday. Also Read - COVID-19 Vaccine to Cost Less Than Rs 250 Per Dose: Serum Institute

All England Club chairman Ian Hewitt said it was not an easy decision to make and it is taken after considering all options in the wake of global crisis.

“It has weighed heavily on our minds that the staging of The Championships has only been interrupted previously by world wars 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.”

Wimbledon’s warm-up grass tournaments in Birmingham, Nottingham, Eastbourne and at London’s Queen’s Club will also have to be postponed.

All tennis courts and facilities have been closed across the UK since their PM announced the nationwide lockdown on March 23.

Wimbledon was scheduled to be played for two weeks from June 29, with Novak Djokovic and Simona Halep set to defend their singles titles.