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​Coronavirus: No immediate threat to UK sports events

There is "no rationale" to postponing sporting events in Britain because of the coronavirus, according to the Department of Culture, Media and Sport, reports BBC Sport.

A meeting between the DCMS and sport governing bodies on Monday discussed potential responses if the outbreak worsens and mass gatherings are banned.

Earlier on Monday, culture secretary Oliver Dowden said sporting events in Britain are unlikely to be affected by the coronavirus in the immediate future.

As of 09:00 GMT on 9 March 2020, three people have died in the UK after contracting the virus with 319 testing positive from 24,960 tests.

Premier League executive director Bill Bush did not wish to comment on the possibility of matches being played behind closed doors when he came out of the meeting in London.

"I am not going to comment on things that are speculative," he said.

But the DCMS later said the meeting included discussions of how staging sporting events behind closed doors "could work in practice" if the situation changed and became necessary.

"Based upon the current scientific advice from the Government's medical experts there is no rationale to close or cancel sporting events as things stand," the DCMS said.

"We will remain in regular dialogue with sports governing bodies and broadcasters, ensuring they are in receipt of the most up to date guidance from the health authorities."

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