The top regulatory body’s of Tennis – ATP and WTA announced the extension of their Tours due to the Coronavirus crisis. The shutdown of top-level tennis was extended on Friday when the ATP cancelled eight tournaments and the WTA eliminated four. As per the latest update, the tennis tours have now been suspended till at least the end of July and thus, the list of cancelled tournaments now exceeds 40. Also Read - Roger Federer Edges Out Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi to Become World's Highest-paid Athlete in Forbes' List
The second Slam of the year, French Open, has been postponed from May to September while the Wimbledon was cancelled in the wake of the ongoing crisis. Wimbledon had only been cancelled twice before, because of World War 1 and World War 2. Also Read - Nick Kyrgios Takes Another Dig at Novak Djokovic, Tells Andy Murray 'You Are Better Than The Serb'
The ATP, which runs the men’s tour, will not now host an event until the first week of August in Washington.
They have cancelled July tournaments in Bastad, Hamburg and Newport, Rhode Island, as well as Los Cabos in Mexico, Gstaad, Umag, Atlanta and Kitzbuehel in Austria. Also Read - AB de Villiers Compares Virat Kohli to Roger Federer, Feels Steve Smith's Mental Fortitude Matches to Rafael Nadal
“The ATP has extended the suspension of the ATP Tour through to July 31, 2020 due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic,” an ATP statement read.
“The decision, made in close collaboration with Tour members, means ATP events in Hamburg, Bastad, Newport, Los Cabos, Gstaad, Umag, Atlanta and Kitzbühel will not take place as scheduled. The extended suspension also applies to the ATP Challenger Tour and to men’s events on the ITF World Tennis Tour.”
A WTA spokesperson said that its events in Bastad, Lausanne, Bucharest and Jurmala in Latvia “will not be held, due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic”. However, WTA tournaments in Palermo, from July 20-26, and in Karlsruhe, Germany, July 28 to August 2, are still on, for now.
“A decision regarding the dates in which Karlsruhe and Palermo may be played along with further updates to the WTA calendar will be made in June,” said the WTA statement.
The ATP also said it would make a decision on further cancellations next month. “Tournaments taking place from August 1, 2020 onwards are still planning to proceed,” said its statement.
“A further update on the ATP Tour calendar is expected in mid-June.” The fate of the US Open in New York is also expected to be decided in mid-June.
“Just like tennis fans, players and tournament hosts all over the world, we share in the disappointment the Tour continues to be affected in this way,” said Andrea Gaudenzi, the ATP Chairman.
“We continue to assess all of our options in an effort to resume the Tour as soon as it is safe to do so, including the feasibility of rescheduling events later in the season.”