The 2020 BNP Paribas Open, a major tennis tournament that would've brought thousands of people to Southern California, was canceled Sunday over coronavirus concerns, according to a tweet from the tournament and the tournament's website.
"The Riverside County Public Health Department has declared a public health emergency for the Coachella Valley after a confirmed case of coronavirus (COVID-19) locally," the tournament's website said. "As a result, the 2020 BNP Paribas Open will not take place at this time due to concerns surrounding the coronavirus and the safety of the participants and attendees at the event. This is following the guidance of medical professionals, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), and State of California."
The tournament was scheduled to start Monday and last through March 22. Dr. David Agus, a University of Southern California professor of medicine and biomedical engineering, said holding the tournament wasn't in "the public interest of fans, players and neighboring areas for this tournament to proceed."
"We all have to join together to protect the community from the coronavirus outbreak,” Agus said.
Tournament director Tommy Haas said organizers are prepared to hold the tournament on another date and "will explore options."