Impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on sports

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused the most significant disruption to the worldwide sporting calendar since World War II. Across the world and to varying degrees, sports events have been cancelled or postponed.[1][2][3] The 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo were rescheduled to 2021. Spectators have no games to watch and players no games to play.[4] Only a few countries, such as Turkmenistan,[5] Belarus and Nicaragua, have continued professional sporting matches as planned.[6]

International multi-sport eventsEdit

Summer OlympicsEdit

The 2020 Summer Olympics and Paralympics were scheduled to take place in Tokyo starting 24 July. Although the Japanese government had taken extra precautions to help minimize the outbreak's impact in the country,[7][8] qualifying events were being canceled or postponed almost daily.[9]

The traditional Olympic flame lighting ceremony in Olympia, Greece, to mark the start of the 2020 Summer Olympics torch relay was held on 12 March without spectators.[10] On 23 March, Canada, Australia, and Great Britain announced that they would withdraw from the Games unless they are postponed for one year.[11] On 24 March 2020, the IOC and Tokyo Organizing Committee announced that the 2020 Summer Olympics and Paralympics would be "rescheduled to a date beyond 2020 but not later than summer 2021", marking the first time in the history of the modern Olympics that an Olympiad has been postponed.[12][13][14] The opening ceremonies of the Games were officially postponed to 23 July 2021.[15]

On 29 April 2020, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe warned that the Games "must be held in a way that shows the world has won its battle against the coronavirus pandemic."[16]

Winter OlympicsEdit

Although the next Winter Olympics are not until 2022 (hosted by Beijing, China), the pandemic has already impacted qualifying in specific sports such as curling—where the World Curling Federation announced a proposal to have qualification be dependent on performance in the 2021 world championships (whose top teams will automatically qualify) and a final qualification tournament, as opposed to the previous plan of having qualification determined by both the 2020 and 2021 world championships.[17] Qualification for the women's hockey tournament was to be determined by IIHF World Rankings after the 2020 Women's World Championship. As the tournament was cancelled, the existing rankings going into the tournament were used instead.[18]

World GamesEdit

The World Games in Birmingham, Alabama, were scheduled for July 2021, but due to the rescheduling of the 2020 Summer Olympics, the eleventh World Games will be held in July 2022 instead.[19]

Arctic Winter GamesEdit

The 2020 Arctic Winter Games were cancelled.[20]

ASEAN Para GamesEdit

The 2020 ASEAN Para Games were cancelled.[21]

National amateur multi-sport governing-body competitionsEdit

IrelandEdit

The Gaelic games of football, hurling, camogie, and ladies' football – mostly played in Ireland – saw all competitions suspended from 12 March 2020. The National Hurling League, National Football League, National Camogie League and Ladies' National Football League were suspended, with competitions not intended to resume until 29 March at the earliest.[22][23] On 17 March, the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) confirmed that the opening fixture of the 2020 All-Ireland Senior Football Championship – due to have taken place at Gaelic Park in The Bronx on 3 May – had been postponed.[24]

PhilippinesEdit

In the Philippines, NCAA Season 95 and UAAP Season 82 were both indefinitely suspended.[25][26] NCAA Season 95 was terminated on 19 March after the then community quarantine in Luzon was upgraded to an "enhanced community quarantine", in effect a lockdown.[27] UAAP Season 82 was canceled on 7 April, after the enhanced community quarantine was extended to 30 April.[28]

On 1 May, the Cebu Schools Athletic Foundation, Inc. (CESAFI) have decided to cancel their 2020 season.[29]

United KingdomEdit

On 16 March 2020, British Universities and Colleges Sport, the UK organisation for university sport, announced that all fixtures from 17 March to 1 April would not take place. Some individual events, like the orienteering and windsurfing championships were canceled entirely, while others were postponed indefinitely.[30]

United StatesEdit

On 11 March 2020, the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) — the main U.S. sanctioning body for college athletics — initially announced that its winter-semester championships and tournaments, including its popular "March Madness" men's basketball tournament, would be conducted behind closed doors with "only essential staff and limited family attendance".[31]

The following day, in respect of the suspension of the NBA season and other professional sports leagues, the NCAA announced that all remaining championship events for the 2019–20 academic year would be canceled entirely, resulting in the first cancellation in the 81-year history of the NCAA basketball tournament.[32] This created a de facto mythical national championship situation.[33] Other American multi-sports organizations — the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA),[34] National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA),[35] and California Community College Athletic Association (CCCAA)[36] — also canceled their seasons. Additionally the Community College level sports governing bodies restored the season of eligibility to athletes who had already participated in the 2020 spring season.

On 12 May, due to the California State University system announcing that in-person classes would remain suspended through the fall 2020 semester, the California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA)—a 12-member NCAA Division II conference consisting entirely of CSU campuses[a]—announced that it would also suspend its fall athletics season.[38]

The financial fallout from the pandemic was specifically cited by the following schools in their decisions to drop certain sports programs effective with the 2020–21 school year:

The athletics programs of MacMurray College, Notre Dame de Namur University, and Urbana University were disbanded entirely, due to announcements that all three schools would wind down operations and close due to economic issues brought upon or exacerbated by the pandemic.[50][51][52]

Alpine skiingEdit

The 2019–20 FIS Alpine Ski World Cup ended two weeks earlier after World Cup races in Sweden, Slovenia, and Italy scheduled for March were canceled.[53][54][55] An earlier February World Cup race was moved from China to Austria.[56]

ArcheryEdit

The opening three stages of the 2020 Archery World Cup were postponed. Other events postponed include the Pan American Archery Championships, which were scheduled to be held in Monterrey, Mexico, from 23 to 29 March, and the European Para-Archery Championships, which were scheduled to be held in Olbia, Italy, from 18 to 26 April.[57]

Association footballEdit

AthleticsEdit

The 2020 World Athletics Indoor Championships were scheduled to be held from 13 to 15 March in Nanjing, China, but were postponed until March 2021.[58]

The 2020 World Athletics Half Marathon Championships was scheduled to be held on 29 March in Gdynia, Poland, but was postponed until October 2020.[59]

The first three events of the 2020 Diamond League, scheduled to be held in Qatar in April, followed by two events in China in May, were postponed until later in the year. [60] On 12 May, a revised schedule was issued, but no points will be awarded for the events.

The 2020 Boston Marathon, originally scheduled for 20 April, was postponed until 14 September.[61] The 2020 London Marathon, scheduled to take place on 26 April, was postponed until 4 October.[62] The 2020 Rome Marathon was cancelled.[63]

The 2020 Two Oceans Marathon, scheduled for 8–11 April, has been cancelled.[64]

The 2020 Three Peaks Race, originally scheduled for 25 April, has been postponed to 26 September.[65]

The 2020 Grandma's Marathon, scheduled for 20 June, was canceled by the organizers more than 50 days before it was to begin. They announced on 31 March that the marathon, the half-marathon, and the 5K would all be canceled.[66]

Two of the Standard Chartered 2020 marathon series, Hong Kong Marathon and Kuala Lumpur Marathon was cancelled by the organizer over uncertainty of the COVID-19 outbreak.[67][68]

The 2020 Berlin Marathon was prohibited from being held on its originally scheduled dates.[69]

The Peachtree Road Race moved from 4 July to 26 November.

Australian rules footballEdit

At the conclusion of its first round of games (played from 19 to 22 March), the 2020 AFL season was suspended until 11 June, while the Finals series of the 2020 AFL Women's season was cancelled after its semi-finals were played with no premiership awarded.[70]

BadmintonEdit

All scheduled Badminton World Federation tournaments were suspended until 12 April due to coronavirus concerns.[71] The affected tournaments are Swiss Open, India Open, Orléans Masters, Malaysia Open, and Singapore Open. Previously the body had suspended the German Open[72] and pushed the Lingshui China Masters from February to May 2020.[73] The 2020 Thomas & Uber Cup had also originally been postponed to 15–23 August, but on 29 April was postponed again to 3–11 October after Denmark exteneded a ban on "larger gatherings" to 31 August.[74]

On 6 April all scheduled tournaments were suspended until 1 August, with World Rankings frozen as of 17 March.

BaseballEdit

InternationalEdit

The qualifying round of the World Baseball Softball Confederation-sanctioned 2021 World Baseball Classic, scheduled in Tucson, Arizona, United States in March 2020 was postponed on 12 March 2020.[75]

On 30 April 2020, Little League International announced that the 2020 Little League World Series and its associated regional qualifiers would be cancelled due to the pandemic. This was the first cancellation of the tournament since its first edition in 1947.[76]

AsiaEdit

JapanEdit

On 26 February 2020, Nippon Professional Baseball announced that spring training would continue without fans in attendance.[77] On 9 March, the league announced that the start of its 2020 season would be postponed until April.[78][79] However, 2020 Season will opening schedule on 19 June without supporters attendance, with Japan Series also decide scheduling on 21 November, according to NPB official announcement on 25 May.[citation needed]

On 4 March, the Japan High School Baseball Federation announced that the National High School Baseball Invitational Tournament, scheduled to begin on 19 March, would take place without fans in attendance.[80] However, on 11 March, the governing body of high school baseball in Japan declared that the tournament had been cancelled.[81][82] The cancellation of the 2020 tournament marked the first time the contest had been cancelled since its establishment in 1924. The tournaments were not formally scheduled between 1942 and 1946, due to World War II.[83][84] According to JHSBF chairman Hideaki Hatta (八田英明) announced on 20 May, all games, including regional qualifying were cancelled on High School Baseball Tourment of Japan, that one of popular sports event in nation, since Second World War (1941 to 1945).[page needed]

South KoreaEdit

Opening Day of the 2020 KBO League season was originally scheduled for 28 March 2020.[85] The Korea Baseball Organization announced in March that all ten exhibition games would be cancelled.[86][87] The league later decided that exhibition games would be played starting 21 April with no spectators. The start of the regular season would also take place with no spectators, on 5 May.[88]

TaiwanEdit

The Taiwan-based Chinese Professional Baseball League was scheduled to begin its 2020 season on 14 March.[89][90] On 1 April, the league announced that opening day would take place on 11 April, without fans in attendance.[91] Due to inclement weather on that date, games did not begin until 12 April.[92][93]

North AmericaEdit

On 12 March 2020, Major League Baseball suspended all spring training activities. Opening Day of the 2020 Major League Baseball season, scheduled for 26 March, was postponed, as was the start of the regular season for Minor League Baseball, which was to begin on 9 April.[94][95] In addition, the Mexico Series and Puerto Rico Series games were canceled; the former would have featured the San Diego Padres playing the Arizona Diamondbacks at Mexico City's Estadio Alfredo Harp Helú, and the latter featuring the New York Mets playing the Miami Marlins at Hiram Bithorn Stadium in San Juan.[96] MLB also canceled the 2020 London Series games, which would have featured the Chicago Cubs playing the St. Louis Cardinals at London Stadium.[97] On 30 April, the 2020 Little League World Series and its other associated tourneys were canceled, and with it, the 2020 MLB Little League Classic game between the Boston Red Sox and Baltimore Orioles scheduled for 23 August in Williamsport, Pennsylvania.[98]

Also on 12 March, the National Collegiate Athletic Association announced the suspension of its baseball season and cancellation of the 2020 College World Series.[99]

Several summer collegiate baseball leagues were canceled entirely, while others postponed their starts from the beginning of June to the beginning of July. The Portland Pickles of the West Coast League announced that they would play without fans, while several other teams withdrew from their leagues entirely.[100]

BasketballEdit

AfricaEdit

The launch of the inaugural season of the Basketball Africa League set for March 2020 was delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic. No new date has been announced.[101]

AsiaEdit

The 2019–20 Chinese Basketball Association season was suspended on 1 February 2020.[102]

On 14 February, FIBA ordered two qualifying games for the 2021 FIBA Asia Cup, Philippines vs Thailand in Quezon City, and Japan vs. China in Chiba to be postponed to a later date. This brought the postponed games to three, after FIBA earlier ordered the China vs. Malaysia game in Foshan to be postponed.[103] Later that week, the Guam vs. Hong Kong game in Hagåtña was also postponed.[104]

The Korean Basketball League canceled its 2019–20 season on 24 March, after playing its last game on 29 February. This comes as the Women's Korean Basketball League canceled its season a week before.[105]

On 4 March, FIBA announced the cancellation of the 2019 FIBA Under-16 Asian Championship in Beirut and the 2019 FIBA Under-16 Asian Championship for Women in Canberra. It also postponed the 3x3 Olympic qualification tournament in Bangalore, and rescheduled the 2020 FIBA Asia 3x3 Cups in Changsha and the 2020 FIBA 3x3 Under-17 Asian Cup in Cyberjaya.[106]

The 2019–20 season of the Super Basketball League in Taiwan continued despite the outbreak. When the Taiwanese government shut down all publicly-controlled arenas on 19 March, the league contemplated of shutting down as well, but ended up on holding all of its games at the HaoYu Basketball Training Center. No less than 100 people are in the arena at any time.[107]

ASEAN Basketball LeagueEdit

Several fixtures of the ASEAN Basketball League 2019–20 season scheduled in February onwards were rescheduled due to the coronavirus pandemic. In early March 2020, four participating teams, Alab Pilipinas, Hong Kong Eastern, Macau Black Bears and Formosa Dreamers has released statements urging the suspension of the whole season due to logistical issues posed by COVID-19-related travel measures in Southeast Asia, mainland China and Taiwan.[108] On 13 March 2020, the league's 2019–20 season was postponed indefinitely.[109]

PhilippinesEdit

The 2020 season of the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) and the PBA D-League was suspended indefinitely on 10 March 2020. The inaugural of the PBA's 3x3 tournament was also likewise delayed.[26] The PBA management also imposed a two-week prohibition on team "practices, scrimmages and other related activities" which took effect on 14 March 2020.[109]

Several leagues have suspended their tournaments on 12 March: Community Basketball Association, National Basketball League, Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League.[110]

On 7 April 2020, the PBA Board of Governors have decided to shorten this season into a two-conference format following the postponement of the Philippine Cup due to the outbreak of COVID-19 and the enforcement of the Enhanced Community Quarantine in Luzon until 30 April.[111]

The possibility of cancelling the 2020 PBA season has been discussed as they have set a deadline in August 2020 to decide if the season will still be pushed through during the Board of Governors meeting on 2 May 2020. Also during the meeting, the board of governors have decided to prohibit all player trades and free agent transactions until the season resumes.[112][113]

EuropeEdit

Jordi Bertomeu, CEO of the Euroleague, suspended the games from 14 March to 11 April. The Euroleague previously suspended the Eurocup. FIBA also suspended the Basketball Champions League and the FIBA Europe Cup starting on 14 March. Lithuania, Sweden, Switzerland, Slovakia and Ukraine canceled outright their respective first division leagues, naming the teams in the top of the standings as champions. Top flight divisions in Spain, France, Germany, Italy, Israel, Belgium, Finland, Croatia, Greece, Poland, Cyprus, and Czech Republic suspended its games as of 14 March. The Adriatic League and the VTB United League suspended its competitions until April.[114] The government of Turkey suspended the Basketball Super League on 19 March, the last major European league to do so.[115]

North AmericaEdit

 
In many New York City parks, hoops were removed from basketball courts to discourage people being in groups.

On 11 March 2020, the National Basketball Association (NBA) suspended its season after Utah Jazz player Rudy Gobert tested positive for coronavirus prior to tip-off for a scheduled game against the Oklahoma City Thunder.[116] Commissioner Adam Silver stated the next day that this suspension "will be most likely at least 30 days, and we don't know enough to be more specific than that".[117] On 6 April in an interview with TNT's Ernie Johnson Jr., he stated there would be no decision on a restart of the season made before 1 May at the minimum.[118]

On 12 March, all Division I conferences in NCAA college basketball canceled their respective tournaments in-progress. The Ivy League had already called off its tournament prior to the decision, while some conferences, as well as the NCAA for its men's and women's tournaments, had previously announced that they would conduct their games behind closed doors.[119][120][121] The NCAA subsequently canceled its tournaments outright.[3][122][123]

On 14 March, the Baloncesto Superior Nacional of Puerto Rico suspended its season.[115]

On 23 March, National Basketball League of Canada suspended the remainder of the 2019–20 season.[124]

On 3 April, the Women's National Basketball Association (WNBA) announced that they will have postponed the start of training camp and regular season which was originally scheduled for 15 May.[125] The 2020 WNBA draft was held virtually and televised on 17 April 2020 without players, guests, and media on-site.[126]

OceaniaEdit

In Australia's National Basketball League, the Sydney Kings announced 17 March that they would pull out of the 2020 NBL Finals after three games, due to "a critical mass of relevant and actual concerns related to player welfare and the club's social responsibility". The NBL had been considering playing Game 4 of the series on 18 March instead of 20 March as originally scheduled to accelerate its completion.[127][128][127] The decision effectively forfeited the series to the Perth Wildcats—who were leading the best-of-five series 2–1 after Game 3, and were officially announced as NBL champions on 18 March.[129] The series was played behind closed doors beginning with Game 2, and the NBL stated that it would be suspended immediately if any player was diagnosed.[130]

BiathlonEdit

The 2019–20 Biathlon World Cup ended a week and a day earlier than previously scheduled. The World Cup final in Norway was cancelled as was the last day of the penultimate World Cup in Finland.[131]

BodybuildingEdit

Several competitive events in international competitive bodybuilding on the amateur and professional levels have seen limitations, postponements, or even cancellations due to concerns about the spread of COVID-19.[citation needed]

Due to these concerns Ohio governor Mike DeWine reduced the 2020 Arnold Sports Festival in Columbus, Ohio on 3 March, before any cases or deaths had been reported in the state. The cancellation was widely regarded as 'radical' at the time.[132][133] The Fitness Expo (under orders from the state government) held the bodybuilding and physique competitions, including the Arnold Classic, without spectators with exceptions for parents and guardians of minors participating in the competitions.[134] Similar Arnold Sports Festivals planned to be held in Africa, Australia, and South America were postponed for later in the year.[135]

On 16 March 2020, Jim Manion, president of the IFBB Professional League and the National Physique Committee announced that competitions planned through to 10 May 2020 in the United States would be postponed for later in the year or canceled until the 2021 season.[136]

BowlsEdit

The 2020 World Outdoor Bowls Championship scheduled to be held on the Gold Coast from 23 May to 7 June 2020,[137][138] has been postponed until 25 May to 6 June 2021.[139]

CastellsEdit

In response to the shutdown of extracurricular activities for children in Catalonia, the Coordinadora de Colles Castelleres de Catalunya (CCCC), the governing body for castells (Catalan human towers), issued a statement on 10 March 2020, recommending the suspension of all castells practices and performances.[140] Subsequently, the lockdown imposed throughout Spain shut down all castells activities throughout Catalonia as of 15 March.[141] As of 25 March 2020, there was no word about the potential impact of the pandemic on the biennial Tarragona Castells Contest, scheduled for 3 and 4 October 2020.[142]

According to the CCCC, the last April without any castells was in 1966.[143]

ChessEdit

The 44th Chess Olympiad scheduled to take place in Moscow, Russia from 5–17 August 2020 was postponed and rescheduled for the summer of 2021.[144][145]

The FIDE Candidates Tournament 2020, held in Yekaterinburg, Russia, was suspended at the mid-point of the tournament on 26 March. FIDE decided to postpone the second half of the tournament after Russia announced it would be interrupting air traffic with other countries starting on 27 March.[146]

Combat sportsEdit

Mixed martial artsEdit

ONE Championship moved its 28 February "King of the Jungle" event behind closed doors, and announced that its ONE Infinity 1 event on 10 April would move from Chongqing, China to Jakarta, Indonesia.[147] On 13 March, ONE announced that all cards would be held behind closed doors in Singapore until ONE Infinity 1 on 29 May, re-located to Manila, Philippines (which was originally to host ONE Infinity 2). The ONE Championship "Heart of Heroes" event in Vietnam (originally scheduled for 20 March) was postponed to June.[148][149][150] On 6 April, due to lockdown orders issued by the Singapore government that restrict non-essential business, ONE announced that the two April cards would be postponed.[151]

On 9 March, Combate Americas announced that its March events would be cancelled and replaced by closed-door tapings beginning 3 April.[152] On 10 March, Polish MMA promotion Konfrontacja Sztuk Walki (KSW) cancelled its 21 March 2020 event KSW 53 in Łódź.[153] On 13 March, Bellator canceled Bellator 241 in Uncasville, Connecticut (which was scheduled to occur later that day), and has since canceled all events through May.[154][155]

Ultimate Fighting ChampionshipEdit

The main North American promotion UFC went on with its 13 March event UFC Fight Night: Lee vs. Oliveira in Brasília, Brazil, behind closed doors.[152][156] On 16 March, UFC announced that the next three UFC Fight Night events, Overeem vs. Harris, Ngannou vs. Rozenstruik, and Woodley vs. Edwards, would be postponed to future dates.[157]

In regards to its next pay-per-view, UFC 249 on 18 April, UFC president Dana White stated that the event would likely go on, but at a new venue behind closed doors. It was originally to be held at New York City's Barclays Center, but a stay-at-home order was issued by the New York state government.[157] On 18 March, the New York State Athletic Commission also withdrew its sanctioning for the event.[158] Due to international travel restrictions and other withdrawals, a revised card for UFC 249 was unveiled 6 April with a location still being determined.[159][160] On 7 April, White disclosed that he had booked an unspecified venue for two months, in order to host both UFC 249 and other future events involving U.S. fighters. He also disclosed plans to secure a private island to host events with international fighters.[161][162]

The new UFC 249 venue was subsequently revealed to be Tachi Palace—a tribal casino in Lemoore, California; as it is on tribal land, it also fell outside of the jurisdiction of the California State Athletic Commission, meaning that events held there could be self-sanctioned.[158] On 9 April, UFC announced that UFC 249 had been canceled, and all other UFC events would be suspended until further notice. White cited interventions from high-ranking staff of the UFC's U.S. media rightsholders, ESPN Inc. and parent The Walt Disney Company.[163] The New York Post reported that Governor of California Gavin Newsom had contacted Disney chairman and former CEO Bob Iger, urging ESPN and the UFC to not hold the event.[164] Despite the cancellation, White stated that he was still going on with his "Fight Island" project.[163][164]

The UFC later announced on 24 April that it would resume its events with a series of three cards held behind closed doors at the VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena in Jacksonville, Florida, beginning with UFC 249 on 9 May, along with two other cards on 13 May (UFC Fight Night: Smith vs. Teixeira) and 16 May (UFC on ESPN: Overeem vs. Harris). Florida had recently exempted sporting events held behind closed doors for a national audience from its stay-at-home order. White also announced a planned card at an undetermined location on 23 May, and plans to begin events at his "Fight Island" in June.[165]

KickboxingEdit

Kunlun Fight cancelled multiple events due to the COVID-19 pandemic.[166][167]

Glory cancelled events in Lint, Belgium and Miami, Florida.[168]

Professional wrestlingEdit

Numerous promotions have canceled major events, such as Impact Wrestling's TNA: There's No Place Like Home, Ring of Honor's 18th Anniversary Show, and the National Wrestling Alliance's Crockett Cup in the United States.[169] Impact, ROH, and NWA also cancelled future tapings for their respective weekly television shows until further notice.[170][171][172] In Mexico, Consejo Mundial de Lucha Libre cancelled tapings for their weekly shows for the foreseeable future and Lucha Libre AAA Worldwide postponed the 2020 Rey de Reyes event.[173][174] In Japan, DDT Pro-Wrestling cancelled their marquee event Wrestle Peter Pan 2020.[175]

New Japan Pro-WrestlingEdit

In accordance with recommendations from the Japanese Ministry of Health, New Japan Pro-Wrestling (NJPW) decided to cancel all scheduled shows from 1 March through 15 March.[176] On 10 March, NJPW announced that they were cancelling all shows through 22 March, which meant that they cancelled the 2020 New Japan Cup as well.[177] The Stardom promotion, sister company of NJPW also owned by Bushiroad, also made adjustments to their scheduled, cancelling shows from 19 February to 14 March. Their 8 March show in Korakuen Hall was held without any spectators in attendance, instead streaming live on their YouTube channel.[178] On 23 March, NJPW would later cancel the 2020 Sakura Genesis event that was originally scheduled to take place in on 31 March.[179][180] On 8 April, NJPW would cancel more events from 11 April through 4 May, which mean both nights of 2020 Wrestling Dontaku were cancelled as well.[181] On 6 May, NJPW cancelled their annual Best of the Super Juniors tournament.[182] The next day, NJPW postponed their Wrestle Dynasty event to 2021, which was to take place in Madison Square Garden in New York.[183]

WWEEdit

American promotion WWE began to move the broadcasts of its weekly programs SmackDown and Raw (which usually broadcast from arenas) behind closed doors to its Orlando training facility, the WWE Performance Center, beginning with SmackDown on 13 March, with no audience and only essential staff in attendance.[184][185][186] The promotion also postponed some of its upcoming house shows.[187]

WrestleMania 36—WWE's flagship pay-per-view event—was originally scheduled to be held at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa. On 16 March, WWE announced that it would also be produced from the Performance Center and air across two nights ( 4 and 5 April).[188][189][190] WrestleMania Weekend's associated events, such as the NXT TakeOver: Tampa Bay card (which was scheduled for Amalie Arena) and WWE Hall of Fame induction ceremony were also postponed to unannounced dates, though TakeOver was ultimately canceled with its planned matches moved to weekly episodes of NXT.[191] Matches for WrestleMania, as well as the final two episodes of SmackDown and final episode of Raw before WrestleMania, were recorded in advance at the Performance Center between 21 and 26 March.[192] While the majority of matches were filmed in Performance Center arena and presented plausibly live, two matches were filmed off-site in different, cinematic styles.[193][194][195]

After continuing with pre-taped episodes for the go-home shows after WrestleMania, WWE announced that its weekly series would resume live broadcasts on 13 April, with Raw and SmackDown from the Performance Center as before, and NXT from its existing studio at Full Sail University in Winter Park.[196][197] WWE told ESPN that "it is now more important than ever to provide people with a diversion from these hard times", and that its programming "bring[s] families together and deliver a sense of hope, determination and perseverance".[197] WWE also confirmed that one of its employees had contracted COVID-19 after a meeting with two health care workers on 26 March, but that the exposure occurred after production had wrapped; the employee had not made any contact with WWE staff since and they made a complete recovery.[197][198][199] Wrestling journalists Dave Meltzer noted that WWE's television contracts with Fox and USA Network likely restricted the number of non-live episodes it could broadcast per-year (accommodating breaks in live broadcasts usually held around the Christmas and New Year holidays).[200]

WWE's next PPV, Money in the Bank, was expected to be held at Baltimore's Royal Farms Arena in May, but was canceled by the arena on 9 April.[201][202] On 17 April, WWE announced that the show's eponymous Money in the Bank matches (where wrestlers compete to retrieve a briefcase suspended above the ring with a ladder, containing a contract granting rights to challenge one of WWE's world championships at any point within the next year) would take place at its world headquarters building in Stamford, Connecticut, with a new "corporate ladder" gimmick where the briefcases would be suspended above a ring on the building's roof; the wrestlers began on the ground floor of the building and fought their way to the roof. The rest of the event occurred live at the Performance Center.[203]

On 9 April, Florida's Division of Emergency Management added an exemption to the state stay-at-home order for employees of a "professional sports and media production with a national audience", if closed to the general public.[204][205] On 13 April, Mayor of Orange County Jerry Demings acknowledged the change during a news conference, stating that they were made following consultations with the office of Governor of Florida Ron DeSantis, and that they would allow WWE to continue its operations.[206][207] It was reported that WWE had received repeated warnings by state officials over the stay-at-home order, but that DeSantis considered the operation critical to the state economy, and accommodated them by allowing the aforementioned changes.[208][206]

DeSantis acknowledged the changes the next day, explaining that viewers were "starved" for sports content, and that the new exception could also be theoretically used by other sporting events.[204] The same day, U.S. president Donald Trump announced that he was forming an economic advisory group to address the country's emergence and "reopening" from the pandemic; WWE owner and chairman Vince McMahon was named to the group (alongside other major sports commissioners and team owners). McMahon has been an ally of Trump, who has also made appearances on WWE programming in the past, and is also a member of the celebrity wing of the company's Hall of Fame.[209][210][211][212]

All Elite WrestlingEdit

On 12 March, All Elite Wrestling (AEW) announced the relocation of its two remaining live broadcasts of Dynamite on TNT for the month of March, scheduled for Rochester, New York and Newark, New Jersey respectively (with the latter originally scheduled to feature AEW's "Blood and Guts" event, also indefinitely postponed),[213] to an alternative location with no audience. AEW stated that it had re-booked the two cities for future episodes in July.[187][214] AEW subsequently cancelled on-location Dynamite broadcasts through at least 13 May.[215][216]

Beginning on 15 March, AEW began to originate Dynamite from a closed stage at TIAA Bank Field's Daily's Place amphitheater in Jacksonville, Florida.[217] Beginning with the 1 April episode, Dynamite moved to an undisclosed location to prevent fans from attempting to interact with the wrestlers;[218] the location was later reported to be in Norcross, Georgia. On 3 April, after a state-wide stay-at-home order was issued, it was reported that AEW had also pre-recorded content for Dynamite on 1 and 2 April, and that they had amassed enough content "for weeks if not months if necessary."[219]

AEW's next pay-per-view event, Double or Nothing, was originally scheduled to take place at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Paradise, Nevada on 23 May. The venue, however, canceled all events up through 31 May due to the pandemic.[220] The event was subsequently moved to Daily's Place (with nearby TIAA Bank Field hosting a deliberate empty arena "Stadium Stampede" match).[221]

Sumo wrestlingEdit

In spite the March Haru basho 2020 [ja] taking behind closed doors without a hitch, bar one wrestler (Chiyomaru) having temporarily withdrawn from the tournament with a fever whilst undergoing tests; both Natsu basho in May and Nagoya basho in May and July have been postponed by two weeks. The July tournament had been previously moved forward a week to avoid conflict with the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo, which have since been postponed a year.[222][223]

A week later, the Japan Sumo Association confirmed the sport's first case when an undisclosed wrestler in the lower ranks, was tested positive after developing a fever some six days earlier. This led to all wrestlers and officials being ordered to stay indoor until further notice.[224]

Following the extension of Japan's national state of emergency until 31 May, the Sumo Association officially shortly cancelled the May Grand Sumo Tournament. It is the second cancellation of a basho since 1946, and the first since March 2011 amidst a match-fixing scandal.[225]

The wrestler who caught the virus was later confirmed to be the Sandanme 11 wrestler Shobushi of Takadagawa stable, who passed away from multiple organ failure on 13 May.[226]

CricketEdit

AfricaEdit

The coronavirus pandemic impacted on several international cricket fixtures and tournaments. The 2020 ACA Africa T20 Cup Finals was scheduled to take place in Kenya in March 2020, before it was postponed in line with the Kenyan government's 30-day ban on international gatherings.[227][228]

AsiaEdit

On 13 March, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) announced that the start of 2020 Indian Premier League will be postponed from 29 March to 15 April.[229] On 16 April, BCCI suspended the tournament indefinitely due to the pandemic.[230] On 13 March, BCCI cancelled the ODI matches between India and South Africa on 15 and 18 March, which were originally announced to be played without spectators.[231] On the same day, the two-match Test series between Sri Lanka and England, scheduled to be played in March 2020, was also postponed.[232] The remaining seven matches of the 2020 Road Safety World Series were rescheduled to a later date.[233] It was earlier decided that the remaining seven matches of the tournament would be played behind the closed doors in DY Patil Stadium.[234]

A women's quadrangular series was scheduled to take place in Thailand in April 2020,[235] but was cancelled a month before it was due to start.[236] The 2020 Malaysia Cricket World Cup Challenge League A, scheduled to take place in March 2020, was postponed,[237] along with two T20I matches between a World XI and Asia XI side.[238]

On 16 March 2020, the remaining play-offs in the 2020 Pakistan Super League were postponed due to a huge spike in the number of coronavirus cases around the country.[239] The Bangladesh tour of Pakistan for a single ODI and a Test match was also postponed.[240]

EuropeEdit

On 11 March 2020, English teams Worcestershire and Surrey both cancelled their pre-season warm-up tours to the United Arab Emirates.[241] The following day, Australia Women's tour to South Africa in March 2020 became the first major international series not to go ahead as planned due to coronavirus.[242] On 13 March 2020, the 2020 United States Tri-Nation Series was postponed due to the pandemic and travel restrictions to the United States.[243][244] On 12 March, the Pakistan Cricket Board announced that all remaining matches of the Pakistan Super League's ongoing fifth season being played in Karachi (where the majority of cases in Pakistan had been concentrated) would be closed to spectators.[245][246] The 2020 Everest Premier League was also postponed on 12 March.[247]

On 21 April 2020, the Dutch government banned all public events in the country through August, requiring the postponement of tours of the Netherlands by New Zealand, Pakistan and the West Indies.[248][249]

On 5 May 2020, ECB chief executive Tom Harrison highlighted to the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport committee that with no cricket being played, the England and Wales Cricket Board could lose as much as £380 million in the worst case scenario. He also said that such high degree of loss was equivalent to 800 days of no cricket. But was hopeful that England can still manage to play a significant number of test matches this year, which in turn would help mitigate the effect of virus.[250]

North AmericaEdit

The 2019–20 West Indies Championship was suspended due to the pandemic and Barbados was declared the champion on 24 March.[251]

OceaniaEdit

On 14 March 2020, the remaining two One Day International (ODI) matches of the Chappell-Hadlee Trophy along with the three-match Twenty20 International (T20I) series between Australia and New Zealand were cancelled due to new border restrictions imposed by the New Zealand government.[252] The first ODI match of the series had been played on 13 March behind closed doors in Sydney.[253] The following day, Cricket Australia confirmed that the final round of matches in the 2019–20 Sheffield Shield season had been cancelled, with New South Wales being named as the winners of the tournament.[254] New Zealand Cricket cancelled the final two rounds of matches in the 2019–20 Plunket Shield season,[255] with Wellington being named the winners of the tournament.[256]

Cross-country skiingEdit

The 2020 Holmenkollen Ski Festival in Oslo, Norway, part of the 2019–20 FIS Cross-country World Cup, was held on March 7–8, without spectators in the stadium part of the Holmenkollen National Arena.[257]

The two final events of the World Cup season, the 2020 Sprint Tour (March 14–17, in Quebec City, Canada and Minneapolis, United States) and the 2020 World Cup Finals (March 20–21, in Canmore, Canada), were canceled on March 13 and March 10 respectively.[258]

CurlingEdit

The curling season typically ends in May but was cut short by the pandemic, effectively ending in early March. The World Curling Federation cancelled the last five championships scheduled for the 2019–20 curling season, most importantly the 2020 World Women's Curling Championship, 2020 World Men's Curling Championship, and 2020 World Mixed Doubles Curling Championship.[259]

CyclingEdit

Road cyclingEdit

The 2020 UAE Tour was scheduled to run until 29 February, but was abandoned following stage five after two support staff tested positive for coronavirus. Of the following nineteen 2020 UCI World Tour races scheduled to take place up to 31 May, only Omloop Het Nieuwsblad and Paris–Nice, which also had the final day of racing removed, took place at the intended time, some with the stated hope of taking place at a later date. The postponed races in this block include the 2020 Giro d'Italia and four of the five annual monuments, and many lower category races were also cancelled or postponed. Also races of the 2020 UCI Women's World Tour were cancelled or postponed.[260][261][262][263][264][265][266][267][268][269][excessive citations]

On 15 March, UCI requested to suspend all UCI-sanctioned events in affected territories until 3 April, and the qualification for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games and Paralympic Games to stop retroactively as of 3 March.[270] On 18 March, the suspension of events were extended at least until the end of April.[271] On 1 April, the suspension was extended until 1 June,[272] and on 15 April, it was extended until 1 July for the international races, and until 1 August for the UCI World Tour races.[273]

On 14 April, the annual Tour de France was originally scheduled for 27 June – 19 July, but it was postponed due to the country's strict measures with the coronavirus as the government extended a ban on mass gatherings until July.[274] As of 15 April, ASO and UCI plans it to take place from 29 August to 20 September.[273]

A revised calender for both the men and the women was issued on 5 May.

BMXEdit

Race days of the 2020 UCI BMX Supercross World Cup were cancelled including 2 to 3 May in Papendal, the Netherlands.[275]

The 2020 UCI BMX World Championships, scheduled to take place in Houston, United States on 26–31 May, are postponed.[276]

OtherEdit

The annual Cape Epic endurance race scheduled from 15 to 22 March was cancelled.[277]

DartsEdit

The Professional Darts Corporation's European Tour was impacted by the coronavirus; with the 2020 European Darts Grand Prix, the 2020 European Darts Open and the 2020 German Darts Grand Prix all being postponed following restrictions on gatherings implemented by federal governments in Baden-Württemberg, North Rhine-Westphalia and Bavaria, respectively. The two 2020 Premier League Darts rounds to be held in Rotterdam at the end of March were postponed to September following restrictions on gatherings in the Netherlands; and the round to be held in Newcastle a week earlier was subsequently postponed to October. The next five rounds, in Belfast, Sheffield, Manchester, Berlin and Birmingham were also postponed to later dates, with the Sheffield dates now serving as the Play-Off Round. All ProTour events from 16 March to the end of April were postponed.[citation needed]

The planned first event on the 2020 World Series of Darts, the US Darts Masters, was canceled for 2020, and the 2020 Nordic Darts Masters was postponed from June to October. The PDC's North American affiliate, the Championship Darts Corporation, cancelled the first weekend of its season in Ontario, and the New Zealand affiliate DartPlayers tour was ended for 2019/20 following the cancellation of events in Queenstown.[278]

EsportsEdit

Impact of the pandemic on esports have primarily affected events and leagues that host competitions in-person (typically to reduce latency between players that can impact games played over the internet, and to allow for spectators akin to traditional sports), which have led to cancellations and postponements, and competitions being held behind closed doors—either in the traditional sense, or with competition being conducted entirely over the internet rather than in-person, with streaming broadcasts (as is typical for esports).[279][280][281]

Sportcal suggested that the esports industry had an opportunity to attract mainstream sports fans as a "viable alternative" to traditional sporting events.[282] Roundhill Investments CEO Will Hershey predicted that games that are straightforward for casual viewers to understand (such as sports games) could see particular interest among this new audience.[280]

Crossover with traditional sportsEdit

The suspension of sports competitions has allowed professional athletes to increase their involvement in video game streaming as a means to engage with fans.[280] Esports organisations have also invited professional athletes to compete in specific competitions (often alongside, or in competition with professional players); FaZe Clan organized a charity Call of Duty: Warzone pro-am entitled "Fight 2 Fund" in support of coronavirus-related charities, where professional players were partnered with celebrity participants (such as Ben Simmons, Chad Johnson, and JuJu Smith-Schuster),[280] and several sim racing competitions similarly invited professional race drivers.[283][284]

Some sports teams have taken advantage of sports games in a similar manner, such as the Phoenix Suns holding NBA 2K20 streams with guest players, between the teams the Suns were scheduled to play that night if the season had continued.[285][286] This culminated with a game actually being commentated by the team's radio broadcasters on team flagship KMVP-FM.[286] Sports broadcasters have also taken advantage of esports as a form of replacement programming, with leagues partnering to hold televised tournaments in sports games featuring their players, or in some cases (such as ESPN2 simulcasting the 2020 League of Legends Championship Series) acquiring professional esports events to air on television.[287][288]

The IndyCar Series and NASCAR announced partnerships with sim racing platform iRacing to hold online invitational events featuring series regulars.[289][290][290] The inaugural eNASCAR iRacing Pro Invitational Series event drew a television audience of 903,000 on Fox Sports 1—making it the most-watched esports broadcast on U.S. linear television since a 2016 Mortal Kombat X tournament aired by The CW. This record was surpassed the following week with a Texas Motor Speedway race — also aired by the main Fox network — which attracted 1.339 million viewers.[291]

FencingEdit

On 3 March 2020, the Fédération Internationale d'Escrime (FIE) issued its first bulletin on COVID-19 precautions.[292] On 10 March FIE strongly recommended that all participants in its competitions (athletes and other members of national delegations) fill and carry with them a questionnaire about their health status.[293] On 12 March a FIE circular reported the postponement of six World Cup or Grand Prix competitions and the World Junior/Cadet Championship.[294] Since the World Cup and Grand Prix events were part of the qualifications for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, the circular warned on the need to postpone the zonal qualifications tournament for the Olympics. No news was given on other events, and their possible postponement or cancellation.[citation needed]

FIE reported on its web site[295] the postponement of the Olympic Games, but hasn't yet given any information on the World Fencing Championships, which is supposed to happen in non-Olympic years, so there is a 2021 Championship planned (assigned to Cairo), but not a 2020 Championship.[citation needed]

Individual countries had different decisions. For example, on 4 April the Federazione Italiana Scherma announced it was suspending all competitions until 31 August.[296]

Field hockeyEdit

Many field hockey leagues in Europe have been suspended or curtailed, including in Spain,[297] England,[298] Germany,[299] and the Netherlands.[300]

The 2019–20 Euro Hockey League Final 8 and 2020 Euro Hockey League Women seasons were suspended on 12 March.[301] The 2020 Men's EuroHockey Club Trophy I, 2020 Men's EuroHockey Club Trophy II, 2020 Boys' EuroHockey Youth Championships, and 2020 Girls' EuroHockey Youth Championships were cancelled.[302][303]

In Asia, the 2020 Men's Hockey Junior Asia Cup, 2020 Women's Asian Champions Trophy, and 2020 Women's Hockey Junior Asia Cup were postponed.[304][305] The 2020 Sultan Azlan Shah Cup was originally postponed to 24 September.[306] But on 2 May the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup was officially cancelled.[307]

FutsalEdit

On 9 March 2020, FIFA and AFC announced that the 2020 AFC Futsal Championship in Ashgabat was postponed to 5–16 August.[308][309][310]

Gridiron footballEdit

Canadian Football LeagueEdit

On 12 March, the Canadian Football League announced the cancellation or modification of several pre-season events in response to the pandemic. Several scouting combines across Canada and the United States were cancelled, while other events such as rules committee meetings will now be held remotely. The League initially planned to hold both its International and National Drafts in April, but it was announced on 24 March that the Global Draft would be postponed indefinitely.[311][312]

The start of the 2020 regular season was officially postponed until at least the start of July by Commissioner Randy Ambrosie on 7 April. In a press statement, he announced that the CFL was exploring multiple options to ensure that the league will be able to play as close to a full season as possible.[313] The regular season had originally been scheduled to begin on 11 June.[314]

National Football LeagueEdit

The National Football League has been in its off-season since Super Bowl LIV in early February. Experts acknowledged that the San Francisco 49ers' loss in Super Bowl LIV may have averted early community transmission in California via post-game celebrations and victory parades.[315][316]

On 12 March, various NFL teams began to suspend travel by their coaches and player scouts, while the league itself had advised its non-critical staff to work from home.[317] The league will not allow teams to re-open their facilities until restrictions are sufficiently lifted in all U.S. states that contain NFL teams.[318]

The pandemic had an impact on the 2020 NFL Draft; draft-eligible players were prohibited by the league from travelling to meet team personnel, and vice versa.[317] The draft went on as scheduled, but public festivities in Las Vegas (which were to be hosted by the newly-relocated Las Vegas Raiders) were canceled,[319] and the draft switched to a remote format where team staff convened from home, with all 32 teams being linked to each other and league staff via Microsoft Teams and other communication software. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell announced the first-round picks from his home in Bronxville, New York.[318][320][321][322] The NFL hosted a charity appeal throughout the draft, supporting aid-related charities.[323] During the broadcast, Goodell announced that Las Vegas would instead host the 2022 draft.[324]

The NFL released its regular season schedule for the 2020 season on 7 May. While the league still intends to play its full season as scheduled, the schedule was formulated so that two weeks of games from the 16-week schedule could be removed without repercussions, in the event the start of the season has to be delayed to late-October, following a blueprint from the 2011 NFL season, in which a lockout threatened the season.[325] In addition, the league had to work around two major golf tournaments that were also postponed to the autumn, the U.S. Open and The Masters (see also below), to avoid broadcasting conflicts.[326] Due to logistical issues associated with the pandemic, the NFL suspended its international games in London and Mexico City for the season.[327]

Whether fans will be allowed to attend games will be on a case-by-case basis, dependent on local regulations. Fox Sports' lead NFL commentator Joe Buck stated that the network already had plans to employ simulated crowds on its telecasts, including sound effects and the possibility of using computer-rendered spectators to provide the illusion of a filled stadium.[328][329]

XFLEdit

On 12 March, the XFL (a revival of the one-season 2001 league) announced the suspension of the 2020 season, with all players to be paid their base pay and benefits for the full 2020 regular season; the season was officially canceled on 20 March, with half of its ten-week regular season schedule played.[330] On 10 April, the league announced that it would suspend all operations and lay off all but a few critical executives, and said it was unlikely a 2021 season would be organized and played, with those executives remaining to wind down the league's business and operations after a Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing three days later.[331][332]

GolfEdit

Many elite golf tournaments, both professional and amateur, have either been postponed or canceled in response to the pandemic, including the major championships.[333] On 13 March, it was announced that the Masters Tournament (scheduled for 9–12 April) had been postponed.[334][335] The 2020 PGA Championship (scheduled for 11–17 May) was postponed the following week.[336] On 6 April, The R&A announced the cancellation of the 2020 Open Championship, the first cancellation since World War II.[337] This was soon followed by the USGA announcing the rescheduling of the 2020 U.S. Open from 18–21 June to 17–20 September (the week before the 2020 Ryder Cup), and to 12–15 November for the Masters (the first ever iteration of the tournament to be played in November) and 6–9 August for the PGA Championship.[338] The ladies majors have been similarly affected, with the LPGA Tour postponing the ANA Inspiration until September.[339]

On 12 March 2020, midway through the first round of the 2020 Players Championship, the PGA Tour announced that the remainder of the tournament and the next three events, the Valspar Championship, WGC Match Play, and the Valero Texas Open, would continue without fan attendance. Subsequently, after completion of the day's play, the tour decided to cancel the remainder of tournament and the three following events.[340][341] On 17 March, the tour announced the cancellation of all scheduled tournaments through 10 May.[342] The European Tour have also cancelled or postponed many tournaments, mostly those scheduled from mid-March through to the end of May,[343] including the Irish Open, a Rolex Series event.[344] The Ladies European Tour postponed the 2020 Evian Championship, originally scheduled for 23–26 July, to 6–9 August.[345]

Other leading professional tours have announced similar measures, as have the bodies responsible for organising leading amateur events.[333] On 1 April, the R&A and the USGA jointly announced that the Curtis Cup was being postponed until 2021, and the British mens and womens amateur championships were being rescheduled from June to August.[346] The LPGA Tour have canceled three tournaments and postponed five others including the ANA Inspiration,[339][333] and the Japan LPGA Tour cancelled twelve tournaments scheduled from March into May.[347]

On 16 April 2020, the PGA Tour announced a condensed schedule for a proposed resumption of play on 11 June with the Charles Schwab Challenge in Fort Worth, Texas. It aims to play most of the remaining tournaments of the 2019–20 season (preserving at least three quarters of the original schedule in total), concluding with the FedEx Cup Playoffs and the season-ending Tour Championship on Labor Day weekend, followed immediately by the beginning of the 2020–21 season (which will have a modified early-season schedule to accommodate the rescheduled majors) with the Safeway Open. Initially, tournaments will be played with no spectators, but the PGA Tour did not rule out the possibility of reinstating spectators by the John Deere Classic in early-July. The extra delay was intended to give the Tour more time for preparations, as well as take advantage of weeks opened by the cancellation and postponements of majors and the Summer Olympics; only one of the three remaining majors—the PGA Championship—falls within the remainder of the 2019–20 season's schedule.[348][349]

A charity skins game, TaylorMade Driving Relief, was held 17 May at Seminole Golf Club in Juno Beach, Florida, featuring Rory McIlroy, Dustin Johnson, Rickie Fowler and Matthew Wolff; televised by NBC and Golf Channel, it was the first televised event at Seminole, and the first in the United States since the suspension of PGA Tour play.[350][351] A sequel to Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson's 2018 match play event The Match, The Match: Champions for Charity, was announced for 24 May in a simulcast across WarnerMedia Entertainment networks, with the two participating in a four-ball match at Medalist Golf Club in Hobe Sound, Florida, with NFL quarterbacks Peyton Manning and Tom Brady as their respective partners.[352]

Recreational golf has also been affected, with many countries and regions ordering the closure of golf clubs and courses.[353][354][355] To enforce social distancing, regulations may require golf clubs to stagger tee times or restrict how services such as pro shops and golf carts are used. In order to reduce physical contact with a commonly-touched surface, holes may be modified with an elevated rim or a tall foam cylinder blocking the hole itself, with a ball deemed to have been holed if the ball comes in contact with the raised rim or cylinder.[356][357][358]

Greyhound racingEdit

The 2020 English Greyhound Derby was postponed on 16 March with no replacement dates set at present.[359] The Arena Racing Company tracks announced a behind closed doors policy from 24 March [360] and racing in Ireland continued behind closed doors.[361] Subsequently, all racing in the United Kingdom and Ireland was postponed until further notice.[362]

GymnasticsEdit

Multiple international artistic gymnastics competitions, many of which were Olympic qualifying events, were either canceled or postponed. On 13 March, after already having completed qualifications, the Baku World Cup canceled its event finals.[363] The Stuttgart, Birmingham, and Tokyo World Cups (scheduled to take place between 21 March – 5 April) were all canceled.[364][365][366] The European Women's Artistic Gymnastics Championships (scheduled to take place 30 April – 3 May) and the European Men's Artistic Gymnastics Championships (scheduled to take place 27–31 May) were both canceled.[367] The Pacific Rim Championships (scheduled to take place 17–19 April) was postponed until 2021.[368]

HandballEdit

The 25–29 March, 2020 European Women's Handball Championship qualification matches in Rotterdam, the Netherlands were cancelled.[369]

Horse racingEdit

In the early stages of the outbreak, most horse racing events remained scheduled as normal, but with restricted attendance at racecourses. This included Hong Kong, France,[370] Japan,[371] United Arab Emirates,[372] United States, Australia,[373] Ireland,[374] United Kingdom, Germany, New Zealand, and Singapore.

The Macau Jockey Club suspended racing events from 31 January to 15 February and resumed racing from 22 February. The Korea Racing Authority suspended horse racing from 8 March. Sunland Park Racetrack in the United States canceled its race meeting from 16 March, which included the Sunland Derby, part of the 2020 Road to the Kentucky Derby.[375] Many tracks in North America followed suit over the following weeks, although some remained open depending on state-by-state decisions. In Britain, although the Cheltenham Festival proceeded as normal in mid-March,[376] the Grand National meeting at Aintree in April was cancelled.[377] By mid-March Ireland had become the only major horse racing country in Europe where the sport continued, albeit strictly regulated and behind closed doors.[378] Ireland finally closed down racing on 25 March until at least 19 April.[379]

Churchill Downs announced that the 2020 Kentucky Derby, normally the first leg of the American Triple Crown, would be delayed to 5 September;[380][381] this cascaded to the Preakness Stakes, with the Maryland Jockey Club delaying their race to 3 October. The Belmont Stakes, normally the third leg, will be run at a shortened distance of ​1 18 miles on 20 June as the first leg.[382]

On 22 March, it was announced that the Dubai World Cup, due to celebrate its 25th anniversary running on 28 March, had been cancelled.[383]

On 7 April, Jockey Club Racecourses announced that the first four Classics of the British flat racing season – the 2000 and 1000 Guineas, scheduled to be held on 2–3 May, and the Epsom Oaks and Derby, scheduled to be held on 5–6 June – would be postponed until later in the season. Ascot Racecourse also announced that Royal Ascot, scheduled to be held from 16–20 June, would take place behind closed doors if it gets the go-ahead.[384][385]

Some horsemen are limited from traveling to other racecourses or horse racing facilities.[386] Hong Kong-based jockey Keith Yeung felt unwell on 22 March night, but his test for COVID-19 PCR was negative.[387] On 26 March, it was announced that American-based jockey Javier Castellano had tested positive.[388]

Some stakes races prize money were reduced. In Randwick Racecourse, Racing NSW announced all Group One and some Group two races in The Champions meeting prize reduced 50%.[389] Inglis Easter Yearlings Sales are many others horse auction held at fully online. While France Galop resume racing form 11 May, but their prize money dropped by 20-40%. [390]

In the U.S., horse racing gained an increased following as a form of live sports content on television, with efforts by the New York Racing Association and TVG Network to try and attract new viewers and customers for off-track betting at tracks still in operation, and several mainstream sports channels picking up simulcasts of racing to help fill schedules (media attention to horse racing is usually focused upon the Triple Crown). Simulcasts also increased the prominence of lesser-known venues such as Fonner Park in Grand Island, Nebraska — which saw its average daily parimutuel handle surpass its previous single-day record of $S1.2 million. on a regular basis[391][392][393]

Cancelled race meetings and reopenings[394]
  • Macau Jockey Club – cancelled from 31 January to 15 February and from 28 March to 11 April[395]
  • Korea Racing Authority – from 8 March
  • Selangor Turf Club, Malaysia – from 14 March
  • Sunland Park Racetrack, New Mexico – March meeting canceled
  • Keeneland, Kentucky – April meeting canceled. Kentucky Downs and Ellis Park closed down in mid-March, while Turfway Park canceled the last 4 days of its meeting at the end of March.
  • Woodbine Racetrack, Toronto – harness racing closed on 14 March. Thoroughbred meeting scheduled to open on 18 April was postponed. Planning to resume both on 6 June
  • New York Racing AssociationAqueduct Racetrack winter meeting closed on 19 March. Beginning of Belmont spring meeting deferred to 1 June[396]
  • Laurel Park, Maryland – suspended from 20 March, plans to reopen on 22 May
  • Fair Grounds, Louisiana – canceled last week of its winter meeting, 22 to 29 March
  • Santa Anita Park, California – from 27 March to 14 May. Racing at Golden Gate Fields was suspended on 2 April and resumed on 14 May [397]
  • Churchill Downs, Kentucky – opening of the spring meeting deferred to 16 May.[398]
  • All Great Britain racecourses – indefinitely from 18 March[399]. planning resume racing from 1 June.
  • All Irish racecourses – 25 March to 6 June[379]. Racing resume from 8 June. [400]
  • All German racecourses – closed from 17 March to 6 May,[401] racing resumed on 7 May.[402]
  • All French racecourses France Galop and LeTrot – closed from 17 March to 10 May, resumed racing on 11 May.[403][404] Racing banned from 20 May at Paris and Eastern France.
  • All United Arab Emirates race meetings – Including Dubai World Cup Night and four April meetings.
  • All New Zealand racecourses – closed from 24 March, planning resume racing form 1 July.
  • All South African racecourses – closed from 27 March [405]
  • Singapore Turf Club – closed from 4 April to 31 May
  • Mauritius Turf Club - 2020 season opening are delayed.
  • All Italian racecourses - resume racing from 26 May. [406]
Meetings that remained open[407]

Ice hockeyEdit

InternationalEdit

The IIHF Women's World Championship, IIHF World Championship Division IV and Women's Ice Hockey World Championships were all cancelled by the International Ice Hockey Federation due to the coronavirus.[410][411] The federation also cancelled the 2020 event of one of its two official junior world championship tournaments, the IIHF World U18 Championship.[412] On 21 March, IIHF publicly announced that the senior men's world championships had also been cancelled.[413]

Cancelled tournaments:

EuropeEdit

As a result of the German government's ban on large events, the Deutsche Eishockey Liga announced on 10 March that it would cancel the remainder of its season, marking the first time in the league's history a champion would not be crowned. The top four teams at the time of the cancellation — EHC Red Bull München, Adler Mannheim, Straubing Tigers, and Eisbaren Berlin — would advance to the Champions Hockey League.[414]

The Swedish Ice Hockey Association suspended all remaining hockey, the playoffs and qualification rounds, in the Swedish elite leagues on 15 March; no awarding of the Le Mat Trophy for the 2019/20 season nor transference of teams from the leagues' qualification plays for the 2020/21 season will happen as a result.[415]

Cancelled or ended leagues:

North AmericaEdit

In early March 2020, the National Hockey League suspended media access to the locker rooms, saying that only official personnel would be allowed in after the games to limit person-to-person contact. On 12 March, the NHL, American Hockey League, the leagues of the Canadian Hockey League (Ontario Hockey League, Quebec Major Junior Hockey League, and Western Hockey League), the USHL, and ECHL announced that their 2019–20 seasons would be indefinitely suspended.[416][417][418][419]

On 12 March, the National Women's Hockey League postponed its Isobel Cup Final game indefinitely.[420]

The ECHL announced on 14 March that the remainder of the season would be scrapped.[421] The leagues of the CHL announced on 18 March that they would scrap the remainder of their regular seasons.[422] On 23 March, the CHL confirmed that all playoffs and the 2020 Memorial Cup were cancelled.[423]

Hockey Canada, the governing body for amateur hockey in the country, cancelled the remainder of its season on 13 March. This included national championships such as the Telus Cup and Esso Cup, as well as all regional and provincial playoffs. It also included the Canadian Junior Hockey League playoffs and the 2020 Centennial Cup.[424][425]

On 11 May, the American Hockey League announced the cancellation of the 2019–20 AHL season, awarding the championship to the Milwaukee Admirals.[426]

LacrosseEdit

The National Lacrosse League (NLL) temporarily suspended the 2020 season on 12 March.[427]

MotorsportEdit

Australian SupercarsEdit

The Supercars Championship had planned to hold an event, the Melbourne 400 supporting the Australian Grand Prix. The event was cancelled the same time the Grand Prix was also cancelled. Although the Championship were seeking to hold a replacement event later in the year,[428] it was ultimately not made up. The Supercars' Tasmania Super400 at Symmons Plains Raceway (originally scheduled for 4–5 April), the Auckland Super400 at Hampton Downs (25–26 April), and the Perth SuperNight at Wanneroo Raceway (16–17 May) rounds were also postponed beyond June.[429] The pandemic saw 23Red Racing withdraw from the championship as its primary sponsor, Milwaukee Tools, ended its deal with the team.

A revised calender was released on 17 May, with the events at Gold Coast and Newcastle dropped from the calender and a second race at Bathurst to be held in February 2021. As well, the Melbourne 400 will still count as a round because practice and qualifying had taken place before the event was cancelled.

Supercars formed the All Stars Eseries to allow its drivers to compete against each other.[430]

Deutsche Tourenwagen MastersEdit

The Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters series postponed the start of its championship until July 2020.[431]

Formula OneEdit

The early Formula One season was disrupted by the coronavirus pandemic.[432] Prior to the start of the season, Ferrari and AlphaTauri expressed concern about the spread of the virus and its effect on the championship. Both teams are based in Italy, which has suffered one of the worst outbreaks of the virus outside China,[433][434] and so both Ferrari and AlphaTauri were therefore concerned over the ability of their staff to leave a quarantine zone that was established in northern Italy. Ross Brawn, the managing director of the sport, announced that Grands Prix would not go ahead if a team were blocked from entering a host nation, but that events could go ahead if a team voluntarily chose not to enter a host nation.[435] Races in Australia, Monaco and France were cancelled.[436][437][438] The cancellation of the Monaco Grand Prix meant that 2020 would mark the first time since 1954 that the race has not been held. The Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Chinese, Canadian, Dutch, Spanish and Vietnam Grands Prix were postponed.[437][439][440][441] Organisers of the Austrian, British and Hungarian Grands Prix announced that their races could go ahead, but would be run without spectators and with teams staffed by minimal personnel.[442][443] The summer break shut down period—which includes mandatory factory closures as a cost-cutting measure—was also brought forward from August to March and April and was extended to three weeks, allowing for postponed races to be held in August.[444]

The sport had planned to overhaul its technical regulations for the 2021 championship in one of the largest changes in its seventy-year history. The pandemic prompted these changes to be postponed until 2022, with teams required to enter their 2020 cars in the 2021 championship to minimise the financial stress placed on the teams.[445] The sport had also planned to introduce a $175 million budget cap in 2021, which was later revised to $150 million.[446] Teams called for further revisions to $100 million, arguing that the pandemic threatened the future of four of the ten teams.[447]

In March 2020, some Formula One drivers entered a virtual version of the Australian[448] and Bahrain Grands Prix dubbed "Not The Grand Prix".[449][450] The races are hosted by Jean-Éric Vergne's Veloce Esports and Formula One. The online races are contested by current and former Formula One drivers, like Lando Norris, Nicholas Latifi, Stoffel Vandoorne, Esteban Gutiérrez, Nico Hülkenberg, Johnny Herbert and Martin Brundle, as well as celebrities and other sportsmen.[citation needed]

Formula 2 and Formula 3Edit

The Bahrain, Zandvoort and Barcelona rounds of the FIA Formula 2 and Formula 3 Championships—a series of races for junior drivers that run in support of Formula 1 events—were postponed when the Bahrain, Dutch and Spanish Grands Prix were postponed.[451][452] The Monaco Formula 2 round was cancelled when the Monaco Grand Prix was cancelled and the Baku round postponed when the Azerbaijan Grand Prix was postponed;[452][453] Formula 3 had not been scheduled to race in Monaco or Azerbaijan.

Formula EEdit

The Formula E championship for electric cars initially responded to the pandemic by postponing the Rome and Sanya ePrix. Planned races in Paris, Jakarta and Seoul were also postponed, prompting organisers to postpone the entire season by two months.[454][455][456]

GT World Challenge EuropeEdit

The 3 Hours of Monza round of the 2020 GT World Challenge Europe Endurance Cup, scheduled for 19 April, was cancelled.[457]

IndyCarEdit

The IndyCar Series initially announced on 12 March that it would hold the Grand Prix of St. Petersburg — the opening race of the 2020 season — behind closed doors.[458] On 13 March, the series announced that it would cancel all races through at least the end of April, including St. Petersburg, Alabama, Long Beach, and Austin. IndyCar intended to begin the season with the traditional "Month of May" races at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, including the GMR Grand Prix (held on IMS's road course configuration), and the 104th running of the Indianapolis 500 on its traditional Memorial Day weekend scheduling.[459] IndyCar formed the IndyCar iRacing Challenge, with its drivers racing against one another on the iRacing racing simulation game.[460]

On 26 March, IndyCar announced that it would tentatively delay the beginning of the season to the end of May (beginning with the Detroit Grand Prix twin races on 30 and 31 May) by postponing the two Indianapolis races to later in the season. The GMR Grand Prix will join the NASCAR Cup Series' Brickyard 400 weekend, as part of a double-header with the Xfinity Series' Pennzoil 150 on the Fourth of July.[461][462] The Indianapolis 500 was postponed to 23 August—marking the first time in history that it has not been held in May. The Grand Prix of St. Petersburg was reinstated as the planned season finale, with a date to be determined.[463] On 6 April, IndyCar announced that the Detroit Grand Prix had been canceled, and that to make up for other canceled races, it would add a new, second Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course race to the schedule on 3 October known as the IndyCar Harvest GP (which may serve as the season finale if the St. Petersburg race does not come to fruition), and convert the Iowa 300 and Monterey Grand Prix to twin-race weekends with two separate, points-paying races each.[464]

On 7 May, IndyCar officially announced that the season would return 6 June with the Genesys 300 at Texas Motor Speedway. To accommodate same-day qualifying and practice, the race will be shortened from its usual 245-lap (600 kilometers) distance to 200 laps (300 miles). Although track owner Eddie Gossage originally insisted that he would not allow the race to be held unless as support for a NASCAR event, he later came to terms with series owner Roger Penske. Races will be held behind closed doors and under modified safety protocols (which Gossage noted were very similar to those adopted by NASCAR for its return).[465] On 21 May, IndyCar announced the cancellation of the Honda Indy Toronto and Indy Richmond 300 events due to "local restrictions", and that the REV Group Grand Prix at Road America would be moved to the July weekend vacated by Toronto, and also become a twin race weekend.[466]

MotoGPEdit

The MotoGP World Championship cancelled the opening round of the 2020 championship in Qatar. The Moto2 and Moto3 support categories raced in the country, as the teams were already in Qatar before the quarantine measures were put in place. Planned events in Thailand, the United States, and Argentina were also postponed, but were later rescheduled to 4 October 15 and 22 November respectively. The races at Jerez, Le Mans, Mugello, and Catalunya were also postponed, while the Germany, Assen, and Finland races were cancelled.[467]

NASCAREdit

Prior to the 2020 Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500, part of the 2020 NASCAR Cup Series, NASCAR announced that no fans would be permitted to attend the race; this event, along with the Dixie Vodka 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway, were later postponed.[468] On 16 March, NASCAR announced that all race events through 3 May were postponed, however they still intend to run all 36 races for the season.[469] On 17 April, NASCAR announced that it had postponed the Blue-Emu Maximum Pain Relief 500 (9 May at Martinsville Speedway), but that they still intend to run a full schedule of 36 races.[470] NASCAR began to organize invitational eSports events on iRacing, the eNASCAR iRacing Pro Invitational Series.[471]

On 30 April 2020, NASCAR announced that it would resume races in a modified schedule, with seven events across its three national series (including two Cup Series doubleheaders, and Xfinity Series and Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series events) at Darlington Raceway and Charlotte Motor Speedway from 17–27 May.[472] NASCAR stated that it still planned to run its full schedule of races, but that where events would be held beyond these May races was subject to change, with a tentative plan to focus primarily on "classic" tracks in the Southeastern United States (within driving distance of Charlotte—where the majority of NASCAR staff and teams are based).[472] NASCAR announced the next set of races on 14 May, formally cancelling originally-scheduled races in late-May and early-June, and announcing new stops at Bristol Motor Speedway (Bristol, Tennessee), Atlanta Motor Speedway, Martinsville, Homestead-Miami, and Talladega Superspeedway.[473]

The Cup Series returned with The Real Heroes 400 on 17 May (in support of The Real Heroes Project—a collaboration of U.S. sports leagues honoring front line health care workers),[474][475] followed by a rare Wednesday-night race (the first since the 1984 Firecracker 400), the Toyota 500 (a 500 kilometer, 310-mile race) on 20 May.[476] The Xfinity Series returned on 19 May with the Toyota 200, while all three series are racing their regularly-scheduled Memorial Day weekend events at Charlotte Motor Speedway. In the Cup Series, this will include two events — the 60th running of the Coca-Cola 600 as scheduled, and the additional 500 kilometer Alsco Uniforms 500 on 27 May.[472]

All races will be held behind closed doors with only essential staff present and team sizes capped at 16, physical distancing requirements for garages and spotters, additional protective equipment for pit crew members, random temperature checks and removal of symptomatic team members, and requiring teams to perform contact tracing logs. To reduce exposure, all events in the first stage of the resumption are being held without qualifying or practice sessions; starting order for most events is being determined by a random draw (with the drivers randomized into positions within specific brackets of the owner points standings), while the two Wednesday Cup Series races use the finishing order from previous Sunday race, but with the top 20 inverted. The Coca-Cola 600 will run same-day qualifying. Due to there being no practice sessions, an extended competition caution will be thrown within the first stage of each race, in order to allow for extended adjustments of vehicles.[477]

TCR Touring Car RacingEdit

Almost all TCR championships have been affected by the outbreak, resulting in complete calendar changes, race postponements and cancellations. These include: TCR Australia, TCR Asia Pacific Cup, TCR Germany, TCR UK, TCR Japan, TCR Italy, TCR Scandinavia, TCR Denmark, TCR Asia, TCR China, TCR Europe, and TC America.[478]

World Endurance ChampionshipEdit

The 1000 Miles of Sebring race was canceled.[479] The 6 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps and the 24 Hours of Le Mans were both postponed.[480][481]

World Rally ChampionshipEdit

The 2020 running of Rally Argentina, Rally Italia Sardegna and Rally de Portugal were postponed,[482][483] with Portugal later announced to be cancelled.[484] The Safari Rally in Kenya was also cancelled.[485] The 2020 Rally Mexico was shortened to allow competitors time to pack their equipment up and return to their headquarters in Europe before a series of travel bans were implemented.[486] The World Rally Championship-2, World Rally Championship-3 and Junior World Rally Championship support categories were also affected by the postponements.[citation needed]

World Rallycross ChampionshipEdit

The opening rounds of the 2020 FIA World Rallycross Championship in Barcelona and Portugal were postponed.[487][488]

World Touring Car CupEdit

The opening rounds of the 2020 World Touring Car Cup in Hungary and Germany were cancelled.[489][490][491] The four races that would have been held across the two rounds were rescheduled for other rounds.

Motorcycle road racingEdit

The 2020 Isle of Man TT and Scottish Six Days Trial were cancelled.[492][493][494] The 2020 North West 200 event was postponed[495] and subsequently cancelled.[496]

British national-level championshipsEdit

All British motorsport, including the British Touring Car Championship,[497] the British GT Championship,[498] and the Britcar Endurance and Trophy Championships.[499] were postponed until July 2020.[500]

Monster trucksEdit

Monster Jam events in multiple localities were affected. Shows in Austin, Texas, Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Cincinnati, Ohio, Detroit, Michigan, Grand Rapids, Michigan, and Hidalgo, Texas were postponed; and shows in Albuquerque, New Mexico, Columbus, Ohio, Colorado Springs, Colorado, Denver, Colorado, Columbia, South Carolina, Des Moines, Iowa, Evansville, Indiana, Green Bay, Wisconsin, Hamilton, Ontario, Huntsville, Alabama, Kansas City, Missouri, and Vancouver were cancelled.[501] On 27 March 2020, World Finals XXI, scheduled to take place 2–3 May 2020, was canceled.[502]

Hot Wheels Monster Trucks Live postponed a show in Louisville, Kentucky.[503]

Monster X Tour postponed its World Finals event in Honolulu, Hawaii.[504]

Radio-controlled racingEdit

Despite taking place in the second half of the year, all 4 blocks (representing Asia (FEMCA), North America (ROAR), Europe (EFRA) and the rest of the world (FAMAR)) and the IFMAR committee have agreed to postpone all remaining IFMAR World Championships (1:10 Electric Touring Car in Heemstede, Netherlands); 1:8 IC Off-Road in Cianorte, Brasil and 1:10 IC Touring Car in Brisbane, Australia) to an alternative date, possibly early 2021.[505][506] This was the first postponement since 2001 when the events of the September 11 attacks caused the 1:10 Electric Off-Road Worlds to be moved to May the following year.[507]

PokerEdit

As of 18 March most casinos and other gaming venues worldwide have been closed indefinitely, and many upcoming live poker tournaments have been either postponed, canceled, or (in jurisdictions where currently permitted) moved to an online platform. Tournaments originally scheduled to be played live are now being played online, including the 2020 Irish Poker Open.[citation needed]

On 20 April, the 2020 World Series of Poker was postponed.[508]

The pandemic has resulted in a massive increase in online poker traffic.[citation needed] It is believed to have directed both professional and recreational players who normally prefer live poker to online platforms due to the indefinite closure of most casinos and other live gaming venues worldwide, with even many unlicensed venues shutting down. In addition, the sudden dearth of live entertainment options due to the widespread disruption of the sports and entertainment schedules around the world is believed to have resulted in more than the usual number of casual players turning to online poker as an alternative. Many operators reported traffic of double or more the previous volume, depending on the time of day.[citation needed]

RodeoEdit

The 2020 Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo was canceled after a festival attendee was diagnosed positive with the virus.[509]

RowingEdit

Four Olympic qualification regattas were cancelled, including the final qualification event scheduled to be held in Lucerne, Switzerland, from 17 to 19 May. All three events of the 2020 World Rowing Cup were also cancelled.[510]

The Boat Race 2020, due to take place on the River Thames in London on 29 March, was cancelled.[511]

Rugby leagueEdit

The Australian/New Zealand National Rugby League was scheduled to continue with no spectators permitted in the stadiums; however, the entire season was suspended indefinitely on 23 March 2020.[512] In line with an overall easings of restrictions in Australia, plans were announced which would see the season restarted from approximately 28 May.[513]

In the northern hemisphere, Super League and the Rugby Football League's Championship and League 1 suspended their seasons until 3 April as a result of the spread of coronavirus.[514] This was later revised to an indefinite suspension.

Rugby unionEdit

Northern HemisphereEdit

EuropeEdit

At the end of February and start of March, the 2020 Six Nations Championship saw all games against Italy postponed due to the worsening situation in that country,[515] with games against the Scotland women's team also cancelled as one of the players tested positive and the team went into isolation.[516] By 13 March, the competition had been suspended.[517] On 12 March, the Pro14 European rugby competition was suspended,.[518]

North AmericaEdit

On 12 March, Major League Rugby (in the United States and Canada) suspended its third season for 30 days.[519] The League later announced, on 18 March, that the season had been scrapped.[520]

Southern HemisphereEdit

In Super Rugby, two fixtures of Japanese team Sunwolves had been moved to Australia from Japan, while Australia announced on 12 March that beginning in the next round of fixtures, all matches held in Australia would be played with no spectators, but otherwise continue as normal. However, on 14 March, New Zealand (who fields five teams in the competition) announced that it will require 14 days self-isolation for any person that arrives in the country from outside of the Pacific Islands, regardless of origin and including New Zealand citizens. League organizer SANZAAR stated that it was evaluating the impact of this restriction,[521][522][523] and ultimately announced later in the day that the season would be suspended following the completion of the weekend's fixtures.[524]

ShootingEdit

The 2020 ISSF World Cup, which was to commence on 15 March in New Delhi, was postponed.[525] The Olympic Test Event in Tokyo, originally scheduled for April 2020, was also canceled.[526]

Short track speed skatingEdit

The 2020 World Short Track Speed Skating Championships in Seoul, South Korea scheduled 13–15 March were canceled.[527] The International Skating Union initially announced they were trying to reschedule the tournament to the beginning of the 2020–21 season[528] but couldn't find a spot in the calendar.[529]

SnookerEdit

The 2020 Gibraltar Open and its qualifying rounds took place from 11 to 15 March. For the first day, there was a limit of 100 spectators per session. On the remaining days, there were no spectators. A significant number of players withdrew, and there was a shortage of referees, with some early matches played without referees.[530]

The 2020 Tour Championship, originally scheduled for 17 to 22 March, was postponed until 21 July.

The 2020 China Open, originally scheduled for 30 March to 5 April, was indefinitely postponed.[531]

The 2020 World Snooker Championship, originally scheduled 18 April to 4 May, has been postponed[532] until 31 July.

The 2020 World Women's Snooker Championship, originally scheduled 22 to 27 June, has been postponed.[533]

SpeedcubingEdit

The World Cube Association announced on 19 March that all upcoming speedcubing competitions were to be canceled up to 19 April[534]. This was later extended until 31st May[535]. This included the cancellation of the biennual European and Asian Championships. An estimated 250+ competitions were affected by the pandemic.

SquashEdit

The 2020 European Squash Individual Championships, scheduled to take place in Eindhoven, the Netherlands from 29 April to 2 May are canceled.[369]

SurfingEdit

The 2020 World Surf League, which was due to start in Australia on 26 March, is on hold until at least June. The first event of the season, the Corona Open Gold Coast, was canceled, while the second and third events, the Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach and Margaret River Pro, were postponed.[536][537]

The 2020 ISA World Surfing Games, scheduled to be held from 9 to 17 May in El Salvador, was postponed. It is hoped that it will take place during the second half of 2020.[538]

SwimmingEdit

The YMCA Short Course Nationals swim meet is canceled in the United States for the first time since 1947.[539]

Table tennisEdit

The 2020 World Team Table Tennis Championships, which was scheduled to be held from 22–29 March in Busan, South Korea, was postponed to 27 September – 4 October.[540][541]

The 2020 ITTF-ATTU Asian Cup was scheduled to be held from 28 February to 1 March in Hainan, China, but was postponed until later in the year.[542]

Five events on the 2020 ITTF World Tour have also been postponed, including the China Open and the Japan Open.[543][544] Four Olympic qualifying events, scheduled to be held in April, were also postponed.[545]

TennisEdit

In one of the first major U.S. sport cancellations of the pandemic, the 2020 BNP Paribas Open tennis tournament in Indian Wells, California was postponed on 8 March 2020 as a precautionary measure, with organizers stating they planned to seek a new date.[546][547] On 12 March, Mayor of Miami Carlos A. Giménez ordered the cancellation of the Miami Open pursuant to the state of emergency in Miami-Dade County.[548]

On 12 March, the ATP announced that in response to the aforementioned cancellations among others, they would suspend events for at least six weeks. The International Tennis Federation also suspended play through at least 20 April, and the WTA canceled WTA Tour events through 12 April.[549] On 16 March, the WTA suspended play through 2 May.[550]

On 16 March, the start of the 2020 French Open was postponed from 24 May to 20 September, and the ATP and WTA jointly announced that their suspension of play had been extended through 7 June.[551][552] On 1 April, Wimbledon was canceled for the first time since World War II, while the ATP and WTA announced that their suspension will be extended through 13 July.[553][554] On 15 May the ATP and WTA announced that their suspension will be extended through 3 August.

On 16 April, the United States Tennis Association announced the formation of an advisory group to evaluate whether the US Open would be played, with plans expected to be announced by June. USTA chief Mike Dowse stated that it was "highly unlikely" the tournament would be played behind closed doors, since it was "not really in the spirit of the celebration of tennis, and it also goes back to the health and wellbeing of our players and support staff that help run the tournament". He added that "on one sense we're very fortunate that we are the fourth Grand Slam to go, so time is on our side at this point." The state of New York (which alone has more cases than any foreign country worldwide),[555] and especially the tournament's host, New York City, have seen the largest impact by the pandemic in the United States.[556]

UltimateEdit

On 24 March, the World Flying Disc Federation announced to cancel or postpone all world championships over the next six months. This included the World Ultimate and Guts Championships (WUGC), World Junior Ultimate Championships (WJUC) and the World Masters Ultimate Championships (WMUC) due to the rapid spread of coronavirus.North America's national body for ultimate, USA Ultimate, also canceled all scheduled club and college tournaments as well as the suspension of the semi-professional league, the AUDL, from commencing the 2020 season.[citation needed]

VolleyballEdit

On 13 March, the International Volleyball Federation (FIVB) decided to postpone the Nations League for men (finals scheduled for Turin, Italy) and women until after the 2020 Summer Olympics caused by the outbreak of coronavirus.[557] On 8 May, the FIVB announced that the Nations League competitions were cancelled.

Water poloEdit

InternationalEdit

The 2020 Women's Water Polo Olympic Qualification Tournament was scheduled to take place in Trieste, Italy, 8–15 March 2020. On 28 February 2020, International Swimming Federation (FINA) announced that the tournament would be postponed to 17–24 May due to the coronavirus outbreak, then it was moved again to 17–24 January 2021 due to the outbreak in the country.[558]

On 12 March, FINA announced that several international water polo tournaments would be postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic. The 2020 Men's Water Polo Olympic Qualification Tournament due to take place in Rotterdam, Netherlands, 22–29 March, would be postponed to 31 May – 7 June, then it was postponed again to 21–28 February 2021. The 2020 FINA Men's Water Polo World League and 2020 FINA Women's Water Polo World League would be postponed to September–October 2020.[559]

AsiaEdit

2020 Asian Water Polo Championship, the Asian continental qualification for the 2020 Olympic water polo tournament, was scheduled to take place in Nur-Sultan, Kazakhstan, 12–16 February 2020.[560] In late January the event was canceled as the Kazakh Government suspended all flights and visas from China due to concerns about the coronavirus outbreak in the country.[561] In mid-February Asia Swimming Federation decided to use the final ranking of the 2018 Asian Games to allocate its continental quotas.[562]

EuropeEdit

On 28 February 2020, European Swimming League (LEN) announced that the match of 2019–20 LEN Champions League Day 10 between Ferencváros (Hungary) and Pro Recco (Italy), and the match of 2019–20 LEN Euro Cup semifinal between Egri VK (Hungary) and AN Brescia (Italy) would be postponed due to the coronavirus outbreak.[563]

On 11 March 2020, LEN announced that all eight matches of 2019–20 LEN Champions League Day 11, the second leg of the 2019–20 LEN Euro League Women quarter-finals, and the 2020 men's U19 European Championships qualification tournaments would be postponed to later dates due to the coronavirus pandemic.[564]

North AmericaEdit

On 11 March 2020, the USA Water Polo (USAWP) announced that the 2020 ODP Girls National Water Polo Championship would be postponed, and the exhibition matches scheduled to be played on 19–21 March 2020 in California between United States and Spain men's national water polo teams would be canceled.[565]

On 16 March 2020, USAWP announced that the inaugural USA Water Polo Division III Women's National Championship scheduled for 8–10 May 2020 in Southern California would be rescheduled for May 2021; and week three of the 2020 National Water Polo League and the 2020 National League Championship/Fisher Cup would be canceled.[566]

OceaniaEdit

On 16 March 2020, the Australian Water Polo (WPA) announced that the 2020 Australian National Water Polo League would be terminated, the 2020 WPA National Championships scheduled to take place in Adelaide, South Australia in May would be canceled, and the 2020 Open Championships (Country and Masters) scheduled to take place in the Gold Coast, Queensland in May would be postponed.[567]

See alsoEdit

FootnotesEdit

  1. ^ While the reference for this item stated that the CCAA had 13 schools at the time, only 12 will be members in the 2020–21 school year. The only CCAA member in 2019–20 that was not a CSU campus, UC San Diego, joins the Division I Big West Conference on 1 July 2020.[37]
  2. ^ The NCAA considers indoor and outdoor track & field to be two separate sports. It holds indoor championships in its winter season and outdoor championships in its spring season.
  3. ^ The NCAA considers swimming and diving to be a single sport.

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