With coronavirus spreading across the globe, sports events, tournaments and leagues have been postponed or cancelled en masse. 

On Friday, the Premier League, Bundesliga and Ligue 1 followed the example of LaLiga and Serie A by suspending fixtures, while golf's Masters tournament in the United States was also postponed.

The Giro d'Italia is awaiting a new date, while the NBA, NHL and MLB seasons have all been put on hold.

Planned Six Nations fixtures have also been postponed, including Saturday's clash between Wales and Scotland in Cardiff, while England's tour of Sri Lanka and South Africa's tour of India have been scrapped.

However, despite the upheaval, some events are still set to take place.

FOOTBALL

While most of the major leagues across the globe have been suspended, some are carrying on, though often with mitigating circumstances such as playing behind closed doors.

In Argentina, both the Superliga and Primera A competitions are scheduled to continue, while matches in Australia's A-League are also set to take place. Liga MX remains, and the Russian Premier League is likewise going ahead.

RUGBY LEAGUE

Though Leeds Rhinos' meeting with Catalans Dragons has been postponed, the rest of the Super League fixtures this weekend will be played, as will the Challenge Cup matches, with fans allowed to attend.

In Australia, the first round of NRL fixtures will take place, though the second round will be held behind closed doors, based upon government advice.

CRICKET

The Indian Premier League start date has been pushed back two weeks until mid-April, but the Pakistan Super League has been given the all clear to continue – although a number of players have pulled out, leaving a reduced schedule.

Four matches this weekend precede a pair of semi-finals next week.

There are question marks over Sunday's behind-closed-doors ODI between New Zealand and Australia in Sydney, however, as Black Caps pace bowler Lockie Ferguson is in isolation after complaining of a sore throat.

RUGBY UNION

Wales-Scotland, scheduled for Saturday, was the last of the three planned Six Nations games for this weekend to fall through. The Pro14 and all French rugby union fixtures have also been halted, and Sunday's Premiership Rugby Cup final between Sale Sharks and Harlequins belatedly joined the mass cull of fixtures.

There are six Super Rugby matches to look forward to across the course of the weekend, however, despite the Australian government advising against non-essential gatherings.

Meanwhile, the RFU Championship fixture list has also been largely unaffected, the weekend's action starting with Newcastle Falcons' home match against Bedford Blues on Friday.

Pacemen Pat Cummins and Josh Hazlewood were to the fore as Australia claimed a 71-run win over New Zealand in the first ODI of the Chappell-Hadlee Series.

In a match that took place in the surreal environs of a deserted Sydney Cricket Ground – fans were not allowed to attend due to coronavirus measures – Australia captain Aaron Finch and fellow opener David Warner laid a solid foundation with scores of 60 and 67 respectively, combining for an opening stand of 124 in 24 overs.

The hosts wobbled to 165-4 as New Zealand battled back from Lockie Ferguson's (2-60) removal of Warner, with spinners Ish Sodhi (3-51) and Mitchell Santner (2-34) the pick of their attack.

Marnus Labuschagne kept Australia on course for a solid total, however, with a busy 56 from 52 balls that featured only two fours.

Mitchell Marsh added a similarly industrious 27 and the seam-bowling all-rounder chipped in with 3-29 as New Zealand rarely looked like threatening a target of 258-7.

Openers Martin Guptill (40) and Henry Nicholls made glacial progress, unable to get Australia's new ball bowlers away and they were 28-1 when the latter edged Hazlewood (2-37) behind.

The Black Caps' race was effectively run in a three-over period that saw leg-spinner Adam Zampa bowl Kane Williamson for 19, Ross Taylor thrash Marsh to Mitchell Starc at midwicket and Cummins (3-25) remove Guptill courtesy of a fabulous catch by Steve Smith at backward point.

A defiant sixth-wicket stand of 51 between Tom Latham (38) and Colin de Grandhomme (25) was New Zealand's final reason for fleeting optimism before Hazlewood had Latham caught in the deep after drinks and 147-6 began to subside to an eventual 187 all out with nine overs left unused.

Australia paceman Kane Richardson has been tested for coronavirus and will miss the opening ODI against New Zealand on Friday.

Richardson reported a mild sore throat on Thursday and is being quarantined as he awaits the results of his coronavirus test.

The 29-year-old was part of the Australia limited-overs squads that played in South Africa in February and March.

"Our medical staff are treating this as a typical throat infection but we are following Australian Government protocols that require us to keep Kane away from other members of the squad and perform the appropriate tests given he has returned from international travel in the last 14 days," a Cricket Australia spokesperson said, via cricket.com.au.

"Once we receive the results of the tests and Kane recovers in the next few days we expect he will re-join the team.

"We will not be making further comment until something changes."

Sean Abbott has joined the Australia squad as cover.

The three-match ODI series, which begins in Sydney on Friday, will be played behind closed doors due to the coronavirus.

Australia's upcoming one-day international series against New Zealand will be played behind closed doors due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Cricket Australia (CA) confirmed that fans will not be allowed into grounds to watch the three-match series, which starts on Friday at the SCG.

Ticket-holders will be given a full refund with no decision yet made over Australia's upcoming three-match Twenty20 international tour of New Zealand.

"Cricket Australia will continue to monitor the coronavirus situation at home and overseas before making a decision on Australian men's international matches beyond the Australian leg of the ODI tournament," said a statement.

It was also confirmed that Australia's World Cup-winning women's side's tour of South Africa has been suspended.

A series of three ODIs and three T20s was set to get under way in Durban on March 22.

"We have taken strong action today in the face of an unprecedented public health issue," said Kevin Roberts, CA's chief executive.

"We believe this is the right decision to minimise the risk of public exposure to the coronavirus, which the World Health Organisation declared a global pandemic on Thursday.

"We understand that these changes to our schedule will impact many, but we hope our community will understand that the public health and safety issues caused by the coronavirus must take priority over sport at this time. This is not an issue specific to cricket."

Domestic cricket in Australia will continue as scheduled with the Sheffield Shield final to be played on March 27.

Australia captain Meg Lanning praised her team for coming through "tough times" to emphatically win the Women's T20 World Cup on home soil.

Alyssa Healy smashed 75 from 39 balls and opening partner Beth Mooney top-scored with an unbeaten 78 as Australia posted 184-4 in Melbourne, a total that proved well beyond India's reach as they were all out for 99 in reply.

However, while they triumphed by the huge margin of 85 runs in the final, it had not always been plain sailing for Lanning and her squad during the tournament.

They lost to India in their opening match in the group stage and, already without Tayla Vlaeminck due to a fractured foot, were dealt a further blow when Ellyse Perry suffered a hamstring injury against New Zealand.

The duo were still present for the victory over India on Sunday, taking part in the celebrations after Australia were crowned champions for a fifth time in front of a crowd of 86,174 - a new record for a women's cricket match and a female sporting event in Australia.

"I'm just really proud of this group of players and staff," Lanning said at the presentation ceremony.

"We've had everything thrown at us, ups and downs. It was tough, definitely, especially after we lost that first game. There was a lot of expectation on us, inside and out.

"There were definitely some tough times in there, but we stuck with each other, had each other's backs.

"Coming in they [the injured players] were a big part of our plans, we had to go to plan B and C.

"It's been massive, 86,000 people at the MCG, I've never seen it before and didn't think I'd be part of it in the middle."

India were left to rue missed opportunities in the field - Healy was dropped by Shafali Verma in the first over, while they also put down a chance off Mooney during a pivotal 115-run opening stand.

Skipper Harmanpreet Kaur hopes her players will learn from the experience after reaching the final of the T20 event for the first time.

"We need to focus, especially in fielding," she said. "But I trust this team. It's part of the game, sometimes you win and sometimes you lose. You have to keep learning. 

"If we talk about the last T20 World Cup, we got to the semi-finals, and this time to the final. I think we're on the right path.

"Every year we are improving. We just need to think of how we play with focus in the main games. Sometimes we don't manage that."

Alyssa Healy and Beth Mooney starred with the bat as Australia eased to an 85-run victory over India in the Women's T20 World Cup final on Sunday.

A crowd of 86,174 – a record for a women's cricket match – witnessed the tournament hosts dominate throughout at the famous MCG.

Australia posted 184-4 after opting to bat first, Mooney top-scoring with an unbeaten 78 from 54 deliveries.

However, it was opening partner Healy who stole the show, capitalising on an early life - she was dropped by Shafali Verma in the first over - to hit the fastest half-century in an ICC final.

Watched by husband Mitchell Starc, who was given permission to leave Australia's tour of South Africa early to be at the game, Healy needed just 39 balls to smash 75.

The right-hander hit seven fours and five sixes - including three in a row during an over from Shikha Pandey - before she was eventually caught at long on, ending a first-wicket stand worth 115 with Mooney.

Chasing such a daunting target, India stumbled out of the blocks. The big-hitting Verma fell to the third ball of their reply, caught behind by wicketkeeper Healy off the bowling of Megan Schutt.

Taniya Bhatia had to retire hurt due to concussion before Jemimah Rodrigues was caught at mid on, leaving the score at 8-2 at the end of the second over.

Deepti Sharma was the only player to provide any real resistance with 33, Schutt finishing with figures of 4-18 as India were bowled out for 99 with five balls remaining.

Despite the absences of Tayla Vlaeminck and Ellyse Perry, who both suffered injuries in the group stage, Australia were crowned T20 champions for a fifth time, albeit this is their first title on home soil.

South Africa-born Marnus Labuschagne made his first ODI century in the country of his birth, yet it came in a losing cause as Australia suffered a series whitewash against the Proteas.

Labuschagne scored 108 out of the tourists' 254-7, bouncing back from a duck in Bloemfontein last time out to reach three figures in Potchefstroom, which is around 40 minutes away from where the batsman grew up before moving Down Under.

Anrich Nortje (2-35) and JJ Smuts (2-42) had kept Australia to a below-par total which never looked like being enough given neither Mitchell Starc nor Pat Cummins were in their attack.

Smuts (84), Kyle Verreynne (50) and the in-form Heinrich Klaasen (68 not out) all registered half-centuries as South Africa claimed a six-wicket win with 27 balls to spare, sealing a 3-0 series victory.

South Africa made a strong start when opener David Warner nicked behind off Nortje on just four and Steve Smith was pinned lbw by Andile Phehlukwayo, the decision remaining with the umpire's call following a review.

The pressure was perhaps telling on Australia captain Aaron Finch, who tore into Labuschagne for turning down a single from the non-striker's end following a brilliant piece of fielding from David Miller.

There was more great work from Miller at short extra cover to remove Finch on 22 as the fielder got his fingers underneath a low chance to give Daryn Dupavillon a maiden ODI wicket.

D’Arcy Short (36) put on 81 alongside Labuschagne before becoming Smuts' first victim and Mitchell Marsh (32) was sent back thanks to more brilliance from Miller, who dived to stop Labuschagne's drive and whipped an underarm throw to wicketkeeper Quinton de Kock for a simple run out.

Alex Carey was bowled by Smuts in the same over without scoring but Labuschagne went on to make an emotional century in front of around 50 watching family members.

In reply, South Africa lost both openers to Josh Hazlewood but the lack of Starc, who has returned home to watch wife Alyssa Healy in the Women's T20 World Cup final, and Cummins allowed Smuts and Verreynne to put on 96 for the third wicket.

Both men picked out fielders from mistimed slogs, but Warner was then unable to hang on to a loose shot from Klaasen, who reached his 50 when shelled at mid-on.

Klaasen sealed the victory by going four-four-six off Marsh, taking his tally for the series to 242 runs.

Mitchell Starc has been cleared to miss Australia's final ODI against South Africa to return home and watch his wife Alyssa Healy play in the Women's T20 World Cup final.

Paceman Starc was given the green light to fly back to his homeland to support Healy at the MCG on Sunday when Australia face India.

Australia have lost the series against the Proteas with one match to spare and they will have to do without left-arm quick Starc when they go in search of a consolation win in Potchefstroom on Saturday.

Justin Langer, the Australia head coach, said: "It's a once-in-a-lifetime chance for Mitch to watch Alyssa in a home World Cup final and so we were happy to allow him to return home to support his wife and be part of a fantastic occasion,

"It is something we have been talking about for a while, given Mitch has had a considerable workload in all three formats this summer. 

"His heading home a couple of days ahead of the rest of the squad means he will have a chance to refresh ahead of our home and away ODIs and Twenty20 internationals against New Zealand that will wrap up our season.

"We have plenty of fast bowling options with us here in South Africa with Josh Hazlewood, Jhye Richardson and Kane Richardson all sitting out our previous match in Bloemfontein, and Mitch's absence will offer one of them an opportunity to impress in Saturday's match."

Australia will defend their Women's T20 World Cup title in the final against India after defeating South Africa in a rain-affected match at the SCG.

The hosts and reigning champions posted 134-5 in a match at first delayed and then truncated by rain, with the earlier semi-final between England and India having been a washout.

While Australia were able to bat their full allocation, their opponents were limited to 13 overs and required 98 runs.

However, they were only able to reach 92-5 as Australia won by five runs, with maiden finalists India up next in Melbourne on Sunday.

Captain Meg Lanning led by example with an unbeaten 49, while disciplined bowling from Megan Schutt (2-17 off three overs) helped to limit a South Africa side for whom Laura Wolvaardt top-scored on 41.

Janneman Malan hit his maiden international hundred as South Africa moved into an unassailable 2-0 lead in the one-day series against Australia with a six-wicket win at the Mangaung Oval.

Opener Malan had endured an ODI debut to forget in the previous match, dismissed lbw for a first-ball duck by Mitchell Starc, but made amends on Wednesday, finishing up unbeaten on 129.

JJ Smuts and Heinrich Klaasen – who made a century last time out – made useful contributions as the Proteas impressively overhauled Australia's total of 271 all out despite losing Quinton de Kock to the third ball of their reply.

The South Africa skipper was once again cleaned up by Starc, who had also bowled the left-hander twice during the recent Twenty20 series between the teams.

However, Smuts helped put on 91 for the second wicket - making 41 from 64 deliveries - and while Kyle Verreynne fell cheaply, Klaasen followed up his knock of 123 not out on Saturday with a valuable 51.

Adam Zampa (2-48) dismissed Klaasen to give Australia hope, yet David Miller (37 not out from 29 balls) shared in an unbroken stand of 90 to steer the hosts to their target with nine balls to spare.

Malan hit seven fours and four sixes in an outstanding 139-ball knock that overshadowed the achievements of team-mate Lungi Ngidi, who had claimed 6-58 earlier in the day.

The paceman became the fastest South African to 50 ODI wickets on his way to career-best figures in the format, David Warner the first of his victims after smashing 35 during an opening stand of 50 with Aaron Finch.

Ngidi also struck twice in successive balls during the 13th over, removing Steve Smith (13) and Marnus Labuschagne, the latter cutting his first delivery to Malan at point.

Captain Finch and D'Arcy Short both made 69 - the latter posting his maiden ODI half-century - while Mitchell Marsh (36) carried his team to a promising position heading into the closing stages.

Yet from 238-5 with six overs to go, Australia lost their way. Ngidi returned to get rid of Ashton Agar, Alex Carey and Pat Cummins, while Anrich Nortje trapped Starc lbw off the last ball of the innings.

The tourists will hope to avoid a 3-0 series loss when they round out their limited-overs tour with the third and final one-dayer, which takes place on Saturday in Potchefstroom.

South Africa batsman Temba Bavuma will miss the remainder of the ODI series against Australia due to a hamstring injury.

Bavuma played in a 74-run win over Australia in Paarl on Saturday after missing the T20 series due to a hamstring strain sustained while fielding against England.

Cricket South Africa revealed ahead of the second ODI in Bloemfontein that the 29-year-old will play no further part as the Proteas eye a series win over Aaron Finch's side.

Rassie van der Dussen was drafted in as cover, but JJ Smuts took Bavuma's place in the side at Mangaung Oval on Wednesday.

Bavuma is due to fly out to India on Sunday for a three-match ODI series.

 

The line-up for the semi-finals of the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup has been confirmed after a gripping group stage came to an end.

India, Group A toppers, will face England before Australia take on South Africa, the Group B toppers, in semi-finals starting at 3 pm and 7 pm respectively on Thursday at the Sydney Cricket Ground.

The line-up was confirmed when both the Proteas and West Indies were awarded a point after no play was possible due to rain in the group stage’s final game at Sydney Showground.

India were the only team to emerge from the groups with a perfect record and their clash with England is a re-run of the 2017 Women’s Cricket World Cup final at Lord’s and the 2018 Women's T20 World Cup semi-final in Antigua, both of which were won by Heather Knight’s side.

 
 Hosts Australia, having booked their place in the knockout stages with victory over New Zealand on Monday, and placed second in Group A, face 2014 semi-finalists South Africa.

The winners will go into the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup 2020 final, to be played on 8 March, International Women’s Day, at the MCG.

Australia have won the tournament four times and England won the inaugural edition back in 2009.

Trent Boult, Lockie Ferguson and Matt Henry all return to New Zealand's one-day squad for the Chappell-Hadlee Trophy series against Australia.

The fast-bowling trio missed the ODI games against India on home soil through injury, though Boult did feature in the two Tests that followed against the same opponents after recovering from a broken hand.

As well as Boult, Ferguson suffered a calf strain while Henry broke his thumb as the Black Caps were blighted by absences during a 3-0 Test series defeat in Australia.

However, they are all available for the upcoming three one-dayers against their trans-Tasman rivals. The first two fixtures take place in Sydney on March 13 and 15, with the finale in Hobart five days later.

Seamers Hamish Bennett and Kyle Jamieson are also in a 15-man squad, along with spinners Mitchell Santner and Ish Sodhi.

"Playing Australia in Australia is one of the great challenges in world cricket and you know you will be severely tested in all aspects of the game," said Black Caps coach Gary Stead.

"Our one-day unit is a pretty settled one with plenty of experience and I think that showed in the recent series against India.

"It’s great to welcome back the class of Trent, Matt and Lockie who spearheaded our run to the Cricket World Cup final last year.

"Kyle's made every post a winner since his international debut this season and he’ll be a handy asset to have in Australia."

 

New Zealand ODI squad: Kane Williamson (captain), Tom Blundell, Trent Boult, Colin de Grandhomme, Lockie Ferguson, Martin Guptill, Matt Henry, Kyle Jamieson, Tom Latham, Jimmy Neesham, Henry Nicholls, Mitchell Santner, Ish Sodhi, Tim Southee, Ross Taylor

South Africa claimed victory in the first ODI with Australia after producing a disciplined bowling display to back up Heinrich Klaasen's eye-catching century at Boland Park on Saturday.

In the first meeting of a three-match series, it was the Proteas who impressed to triumph by 74 runs, Klaasen's unbeaten 123 proving key, while Lungi Ngidi (3-30) was clinical with the ball.

The victory came despite a sluggish start from the hosts, who were reduced to 48-3, with newcomer Janneman Malan among the victims as he was out for a golden duck.

But another debutant shone far more brightly, Kyle Verreynne's handy contribution of 48 – along with David Miller's 64 and Klaasen's heroics – helping South Africa to 291-7.

Even in the absence of influential paceman Kagiso Rabada, out with a groin strain suffered in the T20 series, the home side applied pressure with the ball to limit Australia's response and seal victory in the 46th over.

Malan fell first ball to Mitchell Starc, given out lbw on review, and captain Quinton de Kock was out tamely for 15 when he nicked one into the gloves of Alex Carey off Josh Hazlewood.

Temba Bavuma dragged on from Pat Cummins to leave South Africa in real trouble before Verreynne and Klaasen's 78-run stand stirred a revival.

Klaasen, who racked up a maiden international hundred, combined just as effectively with Miller after Verreynne was caught at square leg by Marsh, the newly minted partnership adding a decisive 149 runs.

With a sizeable target to chase, the tourists struggled to get going, although Steve Smith's 76 did raise hopes of making it a competitive contest after openers David Warner (25) and Aaron Finch (10) had been dismissed by Ngidi.

When Smith was trapped lbw by Anrich Nortje in the 35th over, Australia were running out of overs and wickets, requiring 118 runs from 96 balls.

Carey's five from 16 deliveries was decidedly unhelpful, but he was not the only one to come up short on a day when Australia simply failed to fire, finishing 217 all out.

Kagiso Rabada will miss not only South Africa's one-dayers against Australia on home soil but also the upcoming tour to India due to a groin strain.

Paceman Rabada suffered the injury during the Twenty20 series with Australia, which concluded on Wednesday at Newlands in Cape Town, and underwent an MRI scan to assess the extent of the problem.

The 24-year-old will be sidelined for a month, according to a statement released by Cricket South Africa (CSA) on the eve of the first ODI in Paarl.

After hosting Australia, the Proteas travel to India for three 50-over fixtures, starting in Dharamsala on March 12.

"The significant injury means that he will take approximately four weeks to heal, which effectively rules him out of both the Australia and India ODI series," said Dr Shuaib Manjra, CSA's chief medical officer.

"The CSA medical staff will ensure his effective and expeditious recovery."

Rabada was rested for the limited-overs games against England earlier this year but returned to face Australia, picking up two wickets in his three appearances as the tourists won the T20 series by a 2-1 scoreline.

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