Miami Open tennis tournament suspended over coronavirus


MIAMI (Reuters) – The Miami Open, which brings together the top men’s and women’s tennis players in the world, has been suspended due to growing concerns about the spread of the coronavirus in the United States, the Miami-Dade County mayor said on Thursday.

“Although we do not have community spread at this time, we want to take the preemptive steps to keep it that way,” Mayor Carlos A. Gimenez said in a written statement cancelling mass gatherings in the area.

A March 22 NASCAR race at the Homestead Miami Speedway was also postponed, Gimenez said, adding that the racing association would decide whether or not to hold the race without fans.

Last year’s Miami Open featured players from over 40 countries and attracted nearly 400,000 spectators.

The inaugural edition of the multi-nation Fed Cup finals that were scheduled to be held in Budapest next month was postponed on Wednesday due to the outbreak.

The cancellation of the two-week annual event, which was set to start on March 23, comes on the heels of Sunday’s last-minute cancellation of the Indian Wells tournament in Southern California due to similar concerns about the pandemic.

Reporting by Steve Keating, writing by Amy Tennery; Editing by Kevin Liffey