Martin Devlin: Not even sport is safe from coronavirus

Author
Martin Devlin,
Publish Date
Fri, 28 Feb 2020, 1:14PM

Martin Devlin: Not even sport is safe from coronavirus

Author
Martin Devlin,
Publish Date
Fri, 28 Feb 2020, 1:14PM

The most significant worry right now in the world of sports is a disease that seems to be unduly affecting almost every
professional competition being played.

Coronavirus has encircled the globe with its tentacles now intruding into every continent to such an extent that the Olympic Games is a very real possibility of being postponed or cancelled altogether.

As late as yesterday IOC President Thomas Bach reiterated that their organisation is fully committed to the Games going ahead  right on schedule. Confident rhetoric, which of course is what he's  paid for, but the truth is he has as little idea about what will happen as the rest of us.

And that includes the world's most qualified medical practitioners who, desperate as they are to find both cause and cure, have so far come up blank. The only two things anyone knows for sure about this particular virulent strain of 'flu is that it's spreading like wildfire and there is no vaccine.

Containment rather than cure seems to be the catch cry which is why so many sporting bodies have chosen to postpone upcoming events and fixtures rather than risk the potential of the great unknown. And that's exactly what the problem is - no-one really knows.

6 Nations rugby, Super rugby, Serie A, World Indoor Athletics Champs,  F1 GP's, Hong Kong and Singapore 7s, Europa League, Federation Cup tennis, World Badminton Masters, Chinese Snooker Open, Skiing, International Boxing's European Forum, Speed Skating, Table Tennis and any number of Olympic qualifying events previously scheduled around various Asian venues have all been canned.

Nothing appears to be safe including the  prestigious European Football Championships (scheduled start date June 12th) and the Olympics themselves (July 24th). All it seems anyone can do is speculate. Bravely predict that this or that event won't be affected while secretly admitting we don't have a clue. Whether the Games will go ahead as planned is now as big a mystery right now as the virus itself.