EuroLeague basketball competitions suspended over coronavirus
Many int'l sports events canceled or rescheduled, some to be played without audience, future of 2020 Tokyo Olympics in doubt
The EuroLeague competitions of the European basketball have been suspended on Thursday due to the coronavirus outbreak.
In a statement, EuroLeague said it has been monitoring latest developments about COVID-19, like the increased risks for participants in games, travel restrictions across Europe and advices by health authorities to prevent the spread of the virus.
"As a consequence of the above it has become impossible to maintain the regularity of the competitions, and in order to preserve the health and safety of the participants and fans, EuroLeague Basketball in agreement with its clubs has taken the decision to temporarily suspend all 2019-20 Turkish Airlines EuroLeague, 7DAYS EuroCup and EuroLeague Basketball Adidas Next Generation Tournament games until further notice," EuroLeague said.
"EuroLeague Basketball will closely monitor any further developments to verify whether they allow the suspension to be reverted," it added.
The International Basketball Federation also announced Thursday the suspension of all FIBA basketball competitions as of Friday due to coronavirus outbreak.
As the world struggles to contain the rapidly spreading virus, organizers of sports events across the globe have been forced to cancel or alter their plans.
Many international sports events were canceled or rescheduled, and some were or will be played without the audience, with even the future of this summer's Tokyo Olympics in doubt.
The World Health Organization (WHO) on Wednesday declared coronavirus a global pandemic.
The global death toll from COVID-19 has surpassed 4,600, with over 124,500 confirmed cases, according to the WHO.
The virus originated in China’s central Wuhan city last December and has spread to more than 100 countries so far.
As part of efforts to contain the outbreak, many governments closed borders and suspended land and air travel with the worst-hit countries.