MOSCOW, April 10. /TASS/. Russian athletes have missed up to 250 international tournaments due to the ongoing global spread of the novel coronavirus, which also forced to cancel or postpone over 1,000 sports tournaments in the country, Russian Sports Minister Oleg Matytsin said on Friday.
“The figures are a very important tool,” Matytsin said. “We have been forced either to postpone or cancel over 1,000 sports tournaments at the all-Russia and regional levels.”
“Our athletes skipped 248 international tournaments with 31 of them scheduled to be organized on the territory of Russia,” he continued.
“We were initially planning to organize the tournaments without spectators in attendance, however, having realized the danger, we decided to suspend the tournaments despite possible losses,” Matytsin said. “It all shows how our society is consolidated.”
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.