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By Chris Oddo | @TheFanChild | Sunday April 11, 2020

 
Bianca Andreescu

The 2020 Coupe Rogers in Montreal has been postponed, marking the first North American summer cancellation on the tennis circuit.

Photo: AP

Following the measures imposed by the Quebec government due to the Coronavirus pandemic, the Coupe Rogers in Montreal has been postponed until 2021. The tournament, originally scheduled for August 7-16 2020, released a statement on Saturday.


The postponement means that Montreal will host the Coupe Rogers in 2021, instead of hosting the men. The tournaments have historically divided up the tours each season, with Toronto and Montreal alternating between WTA and ATP each season.

Toronto is scheduled to host the men this year and has not announced a cancellation as of yet.

“If at the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis we were hoping that the situation would be resolved in time to be able to host our tournament as initially planned on the calendar, but we knew that the chances were getting smaller and smaller in recent weeks,” stated Eugène Lapierre, Tournament Director. “Our priority in the management of this crisis has always been to ensure the safety and wellbeing of our players, fans, volunteers, partners and employees. It is thus with a heavy heart that we received this news, but we understand that this decision was necessary.”

Tennis Express

It will be a difficult financial blow for Tennis Canada, which uses the funds from its tournaments to reinvest in the sport.

“Rogers Cup is the engine of tennis development in Canada. Ninety percent of the money that we successfully invest in the development of our sport each year comes from the profits of our tournaments,” stated Michael Downey, President and CEO at Tennis Canada. “It goes without saying that 2020 will be a very difficult year for our organization."

The ATP's Rogers Cup, set for the same dates in Toronto, may end up being cancelled in the coming weeks, but for now, some hope remains. The ATP and WTA Tours have been suspended until July 13 and Montreal is the first North American summer event to be affected.

It might not be the last.

"To be frank, we're at risk there too," acknowledged Downey. "We've always thought we would be, because we're just at a time of year that's very difficult especially when you're talking about the success of these tournaments. You have 20,000, 25,000 people on site and that's difficult when the governments are talking about social distancing. We also know that no one really knows what lies in the future with respect to this virus."

 

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