MOSCOW, April 10. /TASS/. Russia will be ready to host international sports tournaments, which have been put on hold due to the ongoing global spread of COVID-19, Russian Sports Minister Oleg Matytsin said on Friday.
Global sports tournaments were either postponed or cancelled earlier in the year due to the novel coronavirus pandemic. For instance, the 2020 Summer Olympics in Japan and the 2020 UEFA Euro Cup were postponed for one year, while the 2020 IIHF (International Ice Hockey Federation) World Championship in Switzerland was cancelled. All national sports tournaments and championships have been stalled as well.
“Russia will be ready and we have forwarded our proposals to Russian national sports federations for them to get in touch with the international federations to offer them assistance with the cancelled tournaments, particularly with the qualifying tournaments for the 2021 Olympics,” Matytsin said.
“Russia will be ready to consider the organization of these tournaments on the territory of our country,” the Russian sports minister said. “Russia is ready to extend a helping hand to organize sports tournaments in our country.”
In late December 2019, Chinese officials notified the World Health Organization (WHO) about the outbreak of a previously unknown pneumonia in the city of Wuhan, in central China. Since then, cases of the novel coronavirus — named COVID-19 by the WHO — have been reported in every corner of the globe, including Russia.
On March 11, 2020, the WHO declared the coronavirus outbreak a pandemic. According to the latest statistics, over 1,600,000 people have been infected worldwide and more than 96,700 deaths have been reported. In addition, so far, over 362,000 individuals have recovered from the illness across the globe.
To date, a total of 11,917 coronavirus cases have been confirmed in Russia, with 795 patients having recovered from the virus. Moscow accounts for the majority of cases (7,822). Russia’s latest data indicates 94 fatalities nationwide. Earlier, the Russian government set up an Internet hotline to keep the public updated on the coronavirus situation.