In one of the biggest tennis stories in recent memory, the Indian Wells Masters, which was to begin Monday, has officially been cancelled, the tournament announced a short while ago due to the Coronavirus.
The statement from the tournament:
The Riverside County Public Health Department has declared a public health emergency for the Coachella Valley after a confirmed case of coronavirus (COVID-19) locally. As a result, the 2020 BNP Paribas Open will not take place at this time due to concerns surrounding the coronavirus and the safety of the participants and attendees at the event. This is following the guidance of medical professionals, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), and State of California.
“There is too great a risk, at this time, to the public health of the Riverside County area in holding a large gathering of this size,” said Dr. David Agus, Professor of Medicine and Biomedical Engineering at the University of Southern California. “It is not in the public interest of fans, players and neighboring areas for this tournament to proceed. We all have to join together to protect the community from the coronavirus outbreak.”
“We appreciate the proactive stance tournament organizers are taking to ensure public health and safety,” said Martin Massiello, Executive Vice President & Chief Operating Officer, Eisenhower Health.
“We are very disappointed that the tournament will not take place, but the health and safety of the local community, fans, players, volunteers, sponsors, employees, vendors, and everyone involved with the event is of paramount importance,” said Tournament Director Tommy Haas. “We are prepared to hold the tournament on another date and will explore options.”
Any patron who has purchased tickets directly from the tournament may request a refund for the 2020 tournament, or a credit for the 2021 tournament. Patrons should click the button below to request a refund or credit.
Qualifying was to begin Monday with main draw women’s matches Wednesday, men’s main draw on Thursday. Several top players including Rafael Nadal were already at the event practicing.
Haas did say in the statement that they hope to hold the tournament at a later date, but what of the players already there, the staff and the fans who have already arrived? The tournament will issue refunds for tickets, but there are so many other issues that will have to be addressed.
No word yet from on the Miami event nor on any of the European tournaments which begin next month. And the French Open is nearly two months away and France has announced today bans on crowds of more than 1,000 people.
You probably all heard the news. Indian Wells cancelled. We are here and still deciding what’s next. So sad for all that is happening around the world with this situation. Hopefully soon solutions from the authorities. Stay all well and safe.
— Rafa Nadal (@RafaelNadal) March 9, 2020
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