Wimbledon canceled for 1st time since WWII because of virus

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A locked gate is seen by the Etihad Stadium where Manchester City was due to play Burnley in an English Premier League soccer match Saturday March 14, 2020, after all English soccer games were cancelled due to the spread of the COVID-19 Coronavirus. For most people, the new COVID-19 coronavirus causes only mild or moderate symptoms, but for some it can cause more severe illness.(AP Photo/Jon Super)

(AP) – Wimbledon was canceled on Wednesday because of the coronavirus pandemic, the first time since World War II that the oldest Grand Slam tennis tournament won’t be played.

The All England Club announced after an emergency meeting that the event it refers to simply as The Championships is being scrapped for 2020.

Wimbledon was scheduled to be played on the club’s grass courts on the outskirts of London from June 29 to July 12.

Instead, the next edition of the tournament will be June 28 to July 11, 2021.

The tournament was first held in 1877 and has been contested every year since, with the exception of two stretches: from 1915-18 because of World War I, and from 1940-45 because of World War II.

It now joins the growing list of sports events scrapped completely in 2020 because of the COVID-19 outbreak.

That includes the Tokyo Olympics — which have been pushed back 12 months —( and the NCAA men’s and women’s college basketball tournaments.

Wimbledon is the first major tennis championship completely wiped out this year because of the coronavirus. The start of the French Open was postponed from late May to late September.

As of now, the U.S. Open is still scheduled to be played in New York from Aug. 31 to Sept. 13.

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More AP Tennis coverage: https://www.apnews.com/apf-Tennis and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

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