New York – The professional tennis tours extended their suspensions, caused by the coronavirus pandemic, through at least the end of July on Friday, bringing the total number of scrapped tournaments around the world to more than 40.
In addition to the ATP and WTA announcements, which also affect lower-tier events, the International Tennis Federation said its tournaments would go on hiatus for the same period, including for juniors, seniors and wheelchair players.
Further updates to the sport’s calendar are expected to be revealed in about a month.
The tours had already been on hold until July 13, a decision announced on April 1, the same day the All England Club said it would be canceling Wimbledon for the first time in 75 years.
That made Wimbledon the first Grand Slam tournament wiped out because of the COVID-19 outbreak.
The start of the 2020 French Open has been postponed from late May to late September. The U.S. Open is expected to make a decision on its status for this year sometime in June.
The U.S. Tennis Association has been weighing various options for its hard-court tournament, which is scheduled to begin main-draw play on Aug. 31, including staging it without spectators or moving it out of its home in New York to another state entirely.
Friday’s announcement by the tours eliminated more than 10 events from the tennis calendar, including the post-Wimbledon grass-court Hall of Fame Open in Newport, Rhode Island, and a hard-court U.S. Open tuneup in Atlanta.
Among the other tournaments affected by Friday’s decision are those located in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Mexico and Romania.
In addition to the cancellation of its July 11 to 18 tournament, the International Tennis Hall of Fame also said Friday that its 2020 induction ceremony for Goran Ivanisevic and Conchita Martinez is being called off. Ivanisevic and Martinez now will be honored alongside the Class of 2021 inductees next year.
ATP chairman Andrea Gaudenzi said in a statement his tour is assessing the “feasibility of rescheduling events later in the season.”
Some small tennis exhibitions have been organized, with small fields and no fans, but no sanctioned play has been allowed since early March.
As of now, the men’s and women’s Citi Open hard-court tournament in Washington, where qualifying would begin on Aug. 1, could mark the return for top-level tennis — if it returns at all this year.
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