South Africa suspends top football league as Coronavirus cases soar

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The Premier Soccer League (PSL) has suspended all matches this week until further notice following the coronavirus outbreak in South Africa.

The PSL held an “urgent meeting” with its executive committee on Monday following President Cyril Ramaphosa’s address to the nation on Sunday evening.

After the meeting, PSL chairperson Irvin Khoza announced at a press conference in Johannesburg that all matches have been suspended, including the Absa Premiership, GladAfrica Championship and the Multichoice Diski Challenge.

Khoza confirmed discussions will continue with the PSL executive committee and the Board of Governors in order to further finalise how the season will progress from this point forward.

“On Thursday March 19, there will be a meeting to discuss the challengers faced by the country and unfolding in other parts of the world,” he stated.

Ramaphosa declared the virus outbreak as a “national disaster” and implemented the closure of South Africa’s borders to all foreign nationals as of Wednesday, 18 March after the number of confirmed cases of the virus increased to 61 individuals over the weekend.

Europe’s top five leagues – the Premier League, La Liga, Bundesliga, Serie A and Ligue 1 – have already suspended all matches until April.

The UEFA Champions League and Europa League have also been postponed, with UEFA in discussions to reschedule the upcoming Euro 2020 spectacle set for June and July.