After WTA cancelled tournaments in China, organizers of the Toray Pan Pacific Open in Osaka, Japan announced the cancellation of the tournament for 2020.

For more than 40 years, Toray Pan Pacific Open was played in Tokyo. Last year, the tournament moved to Osaka, and it was nobody else than Naomi Osaka who became the champion of the tournament. This year, she won’t have an opportunity to compete in her home country again as the tournament was cancelled due to the COVID-19 concerns.

“It is with great regret to announce that the Toray Pan Pacific Open Tennis Executive Committee, after much consultation with WTA, decided to cancel the Toray Pan Pacific Open Tennis 2020,” the tournament announced in an official statement.

“With the ongoing global COVID-19 pandemic, the WTA Premier tournament in Tokyo, Japan, was initially postponed for two months from September to November. The Executive Committee looked at every possible way to make this tournament happen, including the idea of holding matches without audiences or restricting admissions in order to prioritize the health and safety of everyone involved including players, officials and judges, ball boys and girls, stewards, sponsors and partners, suppliers and contractors, media, guests and all other staff.”

“However, after a series of deliberations, the Executive Committee made a heartrending decision to rule out the postponement and concluded that the cancelation of the tournament was the best decision in the interest of public health, especially in light of the concern about the second wave of infection spreading in Japan.”

“This will be the first cancellation since this tournament commenced in 1984. This is very unfortunate not only for the international tennis players but for all tennis fans inside and outside of Japan who were looking forward to watching top-quality tennis. The Executive Committee will now shift its focus on making 2021 tournament a great success.”

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Author: Erik Virostko