‘Fifth major’ Indian Wells postponed due to coronavirus

The event, which next year was scheduled to be held March 8-21, attracts the game’s top players from both the men’s and women’s sides and in 2019 drew a record 475,000 fans over its two-week run.

The 2020 edition was the first major professional sporting event in the United States cancelled in wake of the coronavirus, on the eve of its scheduled start.

Men’s tennis governing body ATP also announced the 2021 Indian Wells postponement but said that all subsequent sections of the 2021 calendar, beginning with the spring clay-court season, remain unchanged at this time.

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The start of the 2021 Australian Open, the year’s first grand slam, has already been delayed for three weeks until February 8 due to the country’s strict border rules to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

Meanwhile, Gilles Simon, Marcus Daniell and Pablo Andujar were voted as the new members on the 2021-22 ATP Players Council, days after world No.1 Novak Djokovic pulled out of the elections.

Djokovic set up the breakaway Professional Tennis Players’ Association (PTPA) on the eve of the US Open in September after he resigned as the head of the player council.

Last month, the Serb confirmed he had been nominated for the council election by his fellow professionals.

However, the Serb was forced to withdraw from the election after a new ATP rule deemed his role with the PTPA a conflict of interest.

Canadian Vasek Pospisil had also resigned from the council earlier this year to support Djokovic’s efforts in the formation of PTPA.