Caption: Mar 12, 2017; Indian Wells, CA, USA; Rafael Nadal (ESP) bounces the ball as he gets set to serve during his second round match as he defeated Guido Pella (not pictured) in the BNP Paribas Open at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden. Nadal won 6-3, 6-2. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

In a stunning move Sunday, the BNP Paribas Open announced it would not be held at this time due to a confirmed case of COVID-19, known as coronavirus, in the Coachella Valley.

The pro tennis tournament announced the decision on Twitter, noting the Riverside County Public Health Department has declared a public health emergency due to the threat of coronavirus in the valley.

Per the release:

“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.”

As noted by Marc Stein of the New York Times, the decision to cancel this tournament, which is “one of the biggest tennis tournaments in the world,” is truly stunning.

Other pro sports leagues are deep in discussions about taking measures to protect players and fans due to the growing threat of coronavirus. The Los Angeles Dodgers have already conceded that games may be cancelled if needed, and the NBA and NHL have both taken proactive measures to protect players.

Jesse Reed
Managing Editor at Sportsnaut. Featured on Yardbarker and MSN.com, and formerly was a breaking news writer/NFL analyst for Bleacher Report.