Wimbledon 2020 has been cancelled due to the ongoing threat of COVID-19, marking the first time The Championships have been…
Wimbledon 2020 has been cancelled due to the ongoing threat of COVID-19, marking the first time The Championships have been abandoned since World War Two.
Tournament officials announced on Wednesday that Wimbledon would not be played in 2020. The iconic grass-court major was due to be played between June 29 and July 13.
“This is a decision that we have not taken lightly, and we have done so with the highest regard for public health and the wellbeing of all those who come together to make Wimbledon happen,” said Ian Hewitt, All England Lawn Tennis Club chairman.
“It has weighed heavily on our minds that the staging of the Championships has only been interrupted previously by World Wars but, following thorough and extensive consideration of all scenarios, we believe it is ultimately the right decision to cancel this year’s Championships, and instead concentrate on how we can use the breadth of Wimbledon’s resources to help those in our local communities and beyond.
“Our thoughts are with all those who have been and continue to be affected by these unprecedented times.”
The entire grass-court season has been called off, meaning there will be no professional tennis taking place until at least July 13.
With three months until the original start date, Wimbledon didn’t need to make a decision until the end of April – when on-site preparations were set to begin – but officials knew there was no logical way the tournament could go ahead in the current climate.
The next scheduled tournaments on the tennis calendar to start on July 13 include Hamburg, Bastad, Bucharest and Lausanne.
However, due to the global nature of tennis and the need for players and their teams to travel to different countries every week, it makes a return of the sport – at this stage – seem near impossible.
Roland Garros controversially postponed their Grand Slam until September 20, just one week after the U.S. Open is scheduled to finish.
Officials at the USTA have floated the idea of postponing their slam and there’s even been rumours of moving the tournament to Indian Wells in December, depending on how New York – the new epicentre of the coronavirus – is faring.
Wimbledon will refund ticket holders, broadcast partners and sponsors due to the cancellation.