Wimbledon cancelled for the first time since World War Two

first_img…“The 134th Championships will instead be staged from June 28 to July 11, 2021.” LONDON (Reuters) – The Wimbledon championships were cancelled for the first time since World War Two on Wednesday as the coronavirus pandemic struck another blue-riband sports event off the calendar and wiped out the entire tennis grasscourt season.While the decision had looked inevitable for some time, since the virtual shutdown of world sport and the postponement of the Tokyo Olympics, Wimbledon had been one of the few events not to have been officially cancelled or postponed.But after emergency talks between the various stakeholders over the last few days, the All England Lawn Tennis Club (AELTC) announced that it was impossible for the grasscourt Grand Slam, scheduled for June 29-July 12, to take place. “It is with great regret that the main board … have today decided that The Championships 2020 will be cancelled due to public health concerns linked to the coronavirus epidemic,” the AELTC said in a statement here“The 134th Championships will instead be staged from June 28 to July 11, 2021.” Following the cancellation of the grasscourt major, and with the pandemic worsening in Europe and the U.S, the men’s ATP Tour, women’s WTA Tour and the International Tennis Federation extended the suspension of professional tennis for another five weeks to July 13.“At this time, tournaments taking place from July 13, 2020 onwards are still planning to proceed as per the published schedule,” said a joint statement from the governing bodies.Britain’s death toll from the virus reached 2,352 on Wednesday, according to NHS figures.The French Open, originally due to be held from May 24-June 7 was postponed and controversially rescheduled by the French tennis federation for Sept. 20-Oct. 4, shortly after the end of the U.S. Open.The U.S. Open organisers said they were continuing with their plans to host the hardcourt Grand Slam in New York as scheduled from Aug 31-Sep 14.NO VACCINE = NO TENNIS Players across the tennis fraternity reacted with shock and sadness at the cancellation of Wimbledon.Roger Federer, whose record haul of 20 Grand Slam titles includes eight Wimbledon trophies, said he was “devastated”. “There is no gif for these things that I am feeling,” he added. In a statement from the organisers of the Halle Open, which was also cancelled, Federer said: “We are going through difficult times but we will emerge stronger. I already look forward to returning to Halle next year. Stay healthy.”Former Wimbledon champion Amelie Mauresmo did not think either the U.S. Open or the French Open would go ahead this year. “I think we’re going to have to draw a line under the 2020 tennis season,” Mauresmo said on Twitter this week.“International circuit = players of all nationalities plus management, spectators and people from the 4 corners of the world who bring these events to life. No vaccine = no tennis.” Unlike the French Open which is played on clay, Wimbledon’s scope for re-arranging the start date was extremely limited.While Centre Court and Court One boast a roof, playing elite level tennis outside on grass would have been extremely challenging in late summer or autumn with a lack of light and problems caused by dew forming on the surface late in the day.Shortening the format of the tournament, or playing behind closed doors, would also have proved extremely unpopular with the players. “While in some ways this has been a challenging decision, we strongly believe it is not only in the best interests of society at this time, but also provides certainty to our colleagues in international tennis given the impact on the grass court events in the UK and in Europe and the broader tennis calendar,” AELTC Chief Executive Richard Lewis said.Tickets holders will be offered the chance to purchase tickets for the same day and court for 2021 championships as well as being issued with a refund for this year’s event, organisers added. Wimbledon had been held every year since 1946 after a six-year hiatus because the country was at war.last_img read more

A Malachi Richardson impostor spent a day fooling everybody: ‘I got catfished in person’

first_imgIn every way it was Malachi Richardson, except it wasn’t. The two pierced ears. A somewhat scraggly high-top fade haircut. The “Always Reppin’” shirt with the orange block “S” that Syracuse wore during warmups in the NCAA Tournament. And a face that, for someone not entirely familiar with the looks of the former Syracuse standout, could easily be mistaken for Richardson’s.For all intents and purposes, he’ll be referred to as the impostor. He rode a commercial flight early Saturday morning from Syracuse’s Hancock International Airport to Newark Liberty International Airport, where he stopped for pictures, videos and autographs before hopping on a plane to Florida. Two 20-year-olds from central New York, Dustin DuBrule and Sean Loveless, rode both flights with the impostor and fell victim to his charade. DuBrule posted his photo with the impostor shortly after 11 a.m. on Saturday, but it didn’t start circulating until late Sunday night, when Loveless tweeted at Richardson to clarify that he had in fact been duped the day before.“A normal person would be like, ‘It’s not me, but thanks,’ or just says, like, ‘I look like him,’” Loveless said. “I am pissed off … I just have a random picture with somebody who I don’t know who he is.”The impostor still remains nameless as of late Sunday night to the two 20-year-olds, most likely along with everyone else fooled throughout the day on Saturday.And while the real Malachi Richardson could see his name grow in popularity over the next month, another Malachi Richardson could be reveling in the humor of his stunt somewhere in Florida’s warm summer while remaining a mystery.“I got catfished in person,” Loveless said. “Like who gets catfished in person? And then I did.” Comments Related Stories Malachi Richardson reportedly signs with agent, officially ending his college careerHow Michael Gbinije and Malachi Richardson fared at the NBA Draft Combine on Thursday Malachi Richardson was on my plane tho pic.twitter.com/uqdGSCgotK— Dustin DuBrule (@DustinDuBrule) May 21, 2016AdvertisementThis is placeholder textThe impostor signed DuBrule’s basketball and told him that he didn’t care which NBA team selected him in the upcoming draft, just that he wanted to be taken. He posed for a picture with Loveless, who waited to approach the impostor until the crowd of around 10 people surrounding him in the tunnel leading from the plane to the gate dissipated.  He even obliged to the request of a stewardess on the first flight, who asked that the impostor send a message to her son in a video.“He really woke up in the morning like, ‘I’m trying to be Malachi Richardson today,’” DuBrule said in a phone interview Sunday night. Published on May 23, 2016 at 2:06 am Contact Matt: mcschnei@syr.edu | @matt_schneidman When the impostor boarded the flight from Syracuse to Newark around 5 a.m. on Saturday, passengers mumbled amongst each other that a recognizable face had joined them. Loveless resisted the urge to approach him immediately and like other passengers on the flight, waited until the plane landed in New Jersey around 7 a.m. to ask for favors.After the impostor’s fellow passengers finished crowding around him, other bystanders in the airport began flocking toward the Richardson lookalike. He never swayed from character, even taking a video with a mom and her son while advising the son to stay in school.Richardson, of course, didn’t heed the impostor’s advice and will instead hope to hear his name called in the first round of this year’s NBA Draft after foregoing his final three years of eligibility at SU.That, in part, is what made the actual Malachi Richardson’s presence on the flight more believable.“He’s still the type of person where he’s humble because he doesn’t have all that money to own his own jet yet and he still has to drive and fly commercial,” Loveless said.This wasn’t an isolated instance where a well-known figure’s doppelganger jokes around with one person and pretends to be someone more famous than themselves. This was intentional, effectively scripted from head to toe, fooling masses of people in Richardson’s own home state about an hour’s car ride from his hometown of Trenton, New Jersey. Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more