Diamond League issues new calendar after London was killed by coronavirus
LONDON: The Diamond league announced a renewed schedule of athletics meetings after the London event on July 4-5 was canceled on Tuesday due to the coronavirus outbreak, with the first event now tentatively scheduled for Monaco in August.
The league said in a statement that several events will be rescheduled, others canceled as organizers continue to adapt the season in the face of the coronavirus crisis.
The meetings have been canceled in London, Rabat and Zurich, which was originally slated to host the season finale in September, while world sport as a whole has seen countless events ruled out and seasons interrupted due to the global pandemic.
The Diamond league said that three athletics meetings would now be held in August: in Monaco (Aug 14), Gateshead in England (16), and Stockholm (23).
These would be followed by September meetings in Lausanne, Brussels, Paris, Shanghai and possibly Rome or Naples, and October meetings in Eugene in the United States, Doha and an unspecified Chinese location.
The full schedule remains tentative, the League said, adding that each meeting organizer will review and announce the format of their competition and what disciplines will be included two months before the event.
This two-month window will also help give athletes time to mentally prepare, stay motivated and adjust training for competition, he said.
Some meeting planners may choose to organize their events in innovative and alternative formats and/or under social distancing regulations.
The Diamond league is usually a series of events leading to a final, but that would not be the case this season and athletes would not earn Diamond league points.
Given current discrepancies in training and travel opportunities, it would be impossible to guarantee a level playing field and a fair rating system during 2020, he said.
United Kingdom Athletics (UKA) previously confirmed the cancellation of the London meeting to be held July 4-5, a decision that its CEO Joanna Coates He said it will have a significant financial impact on UKA and sport in general.