Coronavirus: LPGA Tour's Blue Bay event in China cancelled

Blue Bay golf event
The Blue Bay event, due to be staged on Hainan Island, had been moved to March from November for 2020

The LPGA Blue Bay golf event, due to take place in China, has been cancelled because of the coronavirus outbreak.

The women's competition was scheduled to begin on 5 March.

Organisers of the event, due to be staged on Hainan Island, said the health and safety of players, fans and staff was their "highest priority".

The start of China's domestic football season and the World Indoor Athletics Championships in Nanjing had already been postponed.

"Any time you cancel an event, it is a difficult decision and we appreciate how hard our partners, the China LPGA and the China Golf Association have worked to host an incredible event," a statement from the LPGA on Friday said.

"While we are disappointed that the tournament won't take place this season, we look forward to going back to Blue Bay in 2021 and for many years to come."

The chief medical officer for England confirmed on Friday that two people in the UK have tested positive for coronavirus.

At least 213 people in China have died from the virus, mostly in Hubei, with almost 10,000 cases nationally.

There have also been 98 cases of the virus in a further 18 countries around the world.

The World Health Organisation declared the outbreak a global emergency on Thursday.

Other sporting events in China have also been affected by the crisis.

The men's alpine skiing World Cup races in China, scheduled for 15 and 16 February in Yanqing, have been cancelled.

Formula 1's governing body has also admitted the Chinese Grand Prix in Shanghai from 17-19 April could be at risk.

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