The stunted summer of tennis took a further massive hit on Friday as the ATP extended the sport’s lockdown through the end of July.
The start of play which was to have begun on July 13 will now last through July 31 due to the continuing COVID-19 health crisis.
The decision means the elimination of 2020 editions of men’s events in Hamburg, Bastad, Newport, Los Cabos, Gstaad, Umag, Atlanta and Kitzbühel.
All Challenger tournaments are also off the calendar.
“Due to the uncertainties surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, we regret to announce our decision to extend the suspension of the Tour,” ATP boss Andrea Gaudenzi said in statement,
“Just like tennis fans, players and tournament hosts all over the world, we share in the disappointment the Tour continues to be affected in this way.
“We continue to assess all of our options in an effort to resume the Tour as soon as it is safe to do so, including the feasibility of rescheduling events later in the season.
“As ever, the health and well-being of the tennis community and wider public remains our top priority in every decision we make.”
The sanctioning body said that planning for events scheduled from August 1 onwards were continuing to plan.
An updated rump calendar for this season is set to appear in a month’s time, the ATP said.
On the Grand Slam scene administered by the ITF the fate of the US Open, due to begin on August 31 in the virus hotspot of New York, remains uncertain.
Local officials said that a temporary field hospital for COVID patients erected inside a tennis hall on the grounds of the Grand Slam was being taken down, perhaps a slightly encouraging sign, though certainly not definitive.
The women’s WTA quickly followed suit, cancelling play at four events but keeping options open for late in the month.
The doomed July tournaments include Bastad, Lausanne, Bucharest, and Jurmala, with decisions to come in June for Karlsruhe and Palermo.
“We regret this is the case but will continue to be guided by medical experts for when it is safe and possible to return to WTA competition. We continue to monitor the situation closely and are hopeful to be back on the court as soon as possible,” the WTA said.