Road To The Olympic Games

Track and Field

Diamond League cancels London meet in adjusted 2020 schedule

The Diamond League announced a revamped calendar of athletics meetings after the July 4-5 London event was cancelled Tuesday due to the coronavirus outbreak, with the first event now provisionally set for Monaco in August.

No points awarded or Diamond League Final this season; Aug. 14 opener in Monaco

Gabriela DeBues-Stafford set a Canadian record in the 1,500 metres last July at the Muller Anniversary Games in London, which was cancelled for this summer on Tuesday. The season's first event is now provisionally set for Monaco in August. (Ian Kingston/AFP via Getty Images/File)

The Diamond League announced a revamped calendar of athletics meetings after the July 4-5 London event was cancelled Tuesday due to the coronavirus outbreak, with the first event now provisionally set for Monaco in August.

The league said in a statement that "several events will be rescheduled, others cancelled as organizers continue to adapt the season in the face of the coronavirus crisis."

Meetings have been scrapped in London, Rabat and Zurich — which was originally scheduled to host the season finale in September — while world sport as a whole has seen countless events wiped out and seasons cut short due to the global pandemic.

The Diamond League said three athletics meetings would now be held in August: in Monaco (Aug. 14), Gateshead in England (16), and Stockholm (23).

Those would be followed by September meetings in Lausanne, Brussels, Paris, Shanghai and possibly Rome or Naples, and in October by meetings in Eugene in the United States, Doha and an unspecified Chinese venue.

The entire calendar remains provisional, the League said, adding each meeting organizer would review and announce the format of their competition and which disciplines will be included two months before the event takes place.

'Impossible to ensure level playing field'

"This two-month window will also help to give athletes time to prepare mentally, stay motivated and adjust training for competition," it said.

"Some meeting organizers might choose to stage their events in innovative, alternative formats and/or under social distancing regulations."

The Diamond League is usually a series of events leading to a final, but that would not be the case this season and athletes would not earn Diamond League points.

"Given the current discrepancies in training and travel opportunities, it would be impossible to ensure a level playing field and a fair qualification system during 2020," it said.

U.K. Athletics earlier confirmed the cancellation of the London meeting due to be held on July 4-5, a decision that its CEO Joanna Coates said "will have a significant financial impact on UKA and the wider sport."

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