Professional tennis came to a halt earlier in March due to the coronavirus Covid-19 pandemic, and it’s now official that it won’t return until at least the week of June 7th. A joint announcement by the governing bodies of pro tennis, the ATP and WTA Tour stated that all spring clay court tournaments were cancelled and all levels of professional tennis including the top level ATP and WTA Tours are suspended through at least June 7th. The ATP and WTA rankings are both being frozen in play, so that when there is a resumption of professional matches for ranking points, all players will remain in their current rankings position.
The join announcement was also critical of the French Open’s unilateral move to September that clashes with other planned pro events at that time. All indications are that this decision was made in Paris without significant input from tennis stakeholders outside of France.
Current academic and medical projections suggest that coronavirus will remain a threat to the global community through the Spring months and based on all of the global economic and medical disruption taking place, the ATP and WTA decision makes sense. The June 7th resumption date also coincides with the NBA’s plans to return in June after that season, like almost every other professional sport in the world, was suspended due to coronavirus.
The world’s professional players at all levels now have some certainty about when they would need to be prepared to rejoin the professional circuit. Talks will continue about what the tour calendar will look like in the second half of the year, and also discussions about the financial impact for professional players, the ATP and WTA tours, and individual tournaments and federations of this global crisis.