The Madrid Open has been cancelled due to a spike in coronavirus cases in Spain.
The clay-court event was originally due to be played in May but was moved to September after the first wave of Covid-19 hit Europe, but a rise in cases in Spain has seen the tournament canned until next year.
It was due to be played as the premier warm-up event for the rescheduled French Open which is set to be played at the end of September and plans had been put in place for a bio-secure bubble to be created.
A statement from the tournament read: “As an act of responsibility in view of the current situation caused by Covid-19, and having thoroughly evaluated the circumstances that the pandemic continues to generate, together with the competent authorities, it has been decided that 2020 Mutua Madrid Open will not take place this year having previously been moved to 12-20 September.
“Following the strong recommendation of the local health authorities, and having monitored the situation for months, the organisers of the Mutua Madrid Open have no choice but to cancel the tournament due to the complex situation that Covid-19 continues to generate in every regard.
“In addition, and after a spike in Covid-19 cases, the community of Madrid announced a few days ago a number of new measures to control the virus’ spread, including a directive that social gatherings are to be reduced to 10 people, both in public and private meetings, further reducing the feasibility of operating the tournament.”
The women’s WTA Tour resumed this week with the Palermo Open, with one unidentified player pulling out on the eve of the tournament after testing positive for coronavirus, while the men’s ATP Tour will start for the first time since March on August 22.
That tournament, the Western & Southern Open, will serve as a warm-up event for the US Open, which will be played on the same site a week later, though several top players have already pulled out due to safety concerns.
Both tours will now work on a revamped schedule for the autumn.
They said in a joint statement: “The WTA and ATP regret to confirm the cancellation of the 2020 Mutua Madrid Open, a decision that has been taken in line with local authorities due to health and safety concerns.
“We would like to recognise the efforts of the tournament organisers who have gone to great lengths in exploring all options to run this year’s tournament, despite the many challenges presented by Covid-19.
“Both tours are assessing updates to the 2020 provisional calendars in regards to events following the US Open and an update will be published in due course.”