China cancels sports for the rest of the year (Reports).
China’s top sports body on Thursday moved to cancel nearly all remaining public sporting events in the country for the remainder of 2020, citing coronavirus concerns.
The Associated Press reported that the country’s General Administration of Sports issued the order affecting a number of upcoming planned sporting events including the world finals of badminton in Guangzhou as well as others such as Formula One’s Shanghai Grand Prix.
The order does not reportedly affect trials for the upcoming 2022 Winter Olympic Games, which are slated to take place in Beijing.
A statement from the General Administration of Sports pointed to “science and order” as reasons for the cancellations, according to the AP.
The move will affect a number of tennis events as well as a pair of high-profile golf events. It will also affect sport climbing, auto racing, and cycling events.
The country has seen its rate of new coronavirus infections largely remain steady since it plateaued earlier this year, and has reported less than 85,000 total cases of the disease. In the U.S., authorities have confirmed more than 3 million cases.
China and the U.S. have been at odds over the former’s handling of the early days of the pandemic, with top U.S. officials repeatedly accusing Chinese officials of not doing enough to stop the virus from leaving its borders.
Despite plans to push the 2020 Olympics to 2021, officials have warned that plans to hold the games in Tokyo next year could still be in jeopardy due to the ongoing pandemic.
“I don’t think anyone would be able to say if it is going to be possible to get it under control by next July or not,” Tokyo organizing committee CEO Toshiro Muto said. “We’re certainly are not in a position to give you a clear answer.”