The ATP and WTA Tours are reportedly bracing themselves for a six-week break as the coronavirus continues to spread at a rapid rate worldwide.
The ATP, which governs men’s tennis, is in advanced discussions on suspending its tour events for six weeks, @NYTSports has learned
— Marc Stein (@TheSteinLine) March 11, 2020
Several reports emerged on Wednesday night suggesting both tours will be suspended for the next six weeks.
A reporter from the New York Times tweeted that the ATP are in ‘advanced discussions’ to cancel the tour for the next six weeks, while Sky Sports Italy report that the Miami Open has been cancelled.
Fabio Fognini’s father has also taken to social media to seemingly confirm players have already been informed that Miami will no longer being going ahead as scheduled.
Fognini informed his father that Miami has been cancelled https://t.co/2o3r2w4kfn
— enrico maria riva (@enricomariariva) March 11, 2020
The news comes on the back of the BNP Paribas Open, better known as Indian Wells, being cancelled on the eve of the tournament beginning on Monday due to one reported case of coronavirus in the Coachella Valley region.
The inaugural 2020 Fed Cup Finals, due to be staged in Budapest in April, was also postponed on Wednesday.
The BBC’s Russell Fuller also tweeted that a six-week suspension for both the ATP and WTA is imminent.
Stand by for a possible six week suspension of both the ATP and WTA Tours – the player councils are meeting today, and that seems to be the direction of travel (for the players, at least)
— Russell Fuller (@russellcfuller) March 11, 2020
A six-week hiatus would see events in Miami, Houston, Marrakech and Monte-Carlo scrapped on the ATP side, while Guadalajara, Charleston and Bogota would be affected on the WTA.
With high-profile tournaments coming up in France, Spain and Italy – three of the biggest-hit European countries – after the initial six-week suspension period, there’s a real possibility that the clay and grass swings could be cancelled altogether.
Tennis isn’t the only sport affected, with football games across Europe either being cancelled altogether or played behind closed doors.
All sport in Italy has been suspended until at least the start of April, while it was confirmed on Wednesday that Juventus football player Daniele Rugani had tested positive to the coronavirus.
Spain is also in talks to ban all La Liga games for the next two weeks, while several Champions League and Europa League matches are hanging by the balance.