Sports activities in 2020 were also not spared by coronavirus like other walks of life. A large number of players fell victim to it and grounds were abandoned for most part of the year. Uncertainty continued to loom throughout this period until reports of launching of COVID-19 vaccines by different countries surfaced in the end, which created hope in the dark period.
Impact of pandemic on cricket
In July 2020, the International Cricket Council (ICC) announced that both the 2020 and 2021 editions of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup had each been postponed by one year because of the deteriorating health condition in the world amid spread of the pandemic.
Therefore, the 2020 tournament was moved to November 2021, and the 2021 tournament was rescheduled to October 2022. The 2023 Cricket World Cup has also been also planned to take place eight months later than its earlier schedule.
PSL, IPL rescheduled due to COVID-19
The Pakistan Cricket Board had to finally reschedule the Pakistan Super League (PSL) after the rising number of cases had created fear among the people. The semi-finals and final matches were first reschedule to be held on 17th and 18th of March respectively, in Lahore. Later, the event was postponed and new dates of the remaining matches were announced to be held in November. The event was won by Karachi Kings in a tough competition against Lahore Qalandars.
On the flip side, India had initially banned the International Premier League (IPL) and other sports activities in respect to Covid-19 precautions shortly after Chief Minister of Dehli, Arvind Kejriwal’s had announced the closure of schools, colleges and cinema theatres. The IPL first remained suspended until 15th April. Then, the BCCI announced that the event would be held in September and November. The premier league was won by Mumbai Indians against Delhi Capitals.
Dean Jones passes away
Dean Mervyn Jones, an Australian cricketer who was born in 24th march 1961, has been a cricketer, coach and commentator in his career. Jones has played one day internationals and test matches for Australia with an extreme exceptional records.
For about 4 years Jones had been a head coach for Islamabad United and the team won six out of eight playoff matches under his leadership, as well as the pair of championships. Later, he parted ways with it in 2019 and joined Karachi Kings.
Jones died on 24th September 2020 due to a cardiac arrest while he was in India for 2020 Indian Premier League.
Football in 2020
Numerous football matches have been postponed or cancelled due to Covid-19 in 2020.
However, over the past 12 months FIFA has spotted its goal scorers. The superstars Cristiano Ronaldo and Robert Lewandowski, whose exceptional year saw them both named among the trio of finalists for The Best FIFA Men’s Player 2020 award, were the most clinical in front of goal, a few lesser-known names also hit the back of the net at an astonishing rate.
FIFA-organised international club football matches between the winners of six continental confederations, as well as the host nation’s league champions. The tournament is arranged to be hosted by Qatar.
The event was postponed to 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic,. Initially to be held in December 2020, on 17 November of the same year FIFA declared that the competition would be played between 1 and 11 February 2021
Also, the new UEFA EURO 2020 schedule has been confirmed, with all 12 host cities staging the same fixtures as originally planned.
The revised dates were approved by the UEFA Executive Committee on 17 June, with the tournaments now taking place from 11 June to 11 July 2021. UEFA EURO 2020 was postponed in March due to the COVID-19 outbreak.
Maradona is no more
Diego Maradona, is one of the most famous faces and an astounding soccer player. He has been widely known because of the ‘hand of god’ goal in 1986.
Maradona was born in 30th October 1960, he has been considered to be a great player of Argentina soccer, and his presence in the team always uplifted the performance. Diego Maradona is one of the two winners of FIFA Player of 20th century.
Unfortunately, Maradona died at the age of 60 on 25th November 2020 due to a heart attack, just after three days of discharge from the hospital.
Tragic death of Kobe Brant
Kobe Bryant, the professional basketball player and the achiever of two Olympic gold medals, was born on 23 August 1978 in Philadelphia, United States, and he was the son of former NBA player, John Cox.
Bryant spent 20-years of his life playing basketball with Los Angeles Lakers in National Basketball Association (NBA). He was the most valuable player of NBA as he won four NBA all-star game MVP awards.
During the 2015-2016 NBA season, Bryant announced his retirement. “This season is all I have left to give,” he wrote on The Players’ Tribune website. “My heart can take the pounding. My mind can handle the grind but my body knows it’s time to say goodbye.”
On 26th January 2020, Kobe Bryant along with her 13-year daughter died in a helicopter crash. The reason of the crash in still unidentified and the investigations are under process.
Khabib Nurmagomedov retires from MMA
Before announcing his retirement, Khabib Nurmagomedov, 32, defeated Justin Gaethje in the second round with a triangle choke to claim his 29th victory at UFC 254 in October.
The Russian fighter announced his retirement from Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) after he dedicated the win to his father, who had died three months ago from the complications of coronavirus.
The champion fighter also asked his team to cut off his gloves as a sign of him retiring finally.
Nurmagomedov said, “God give me everything, and with my father, I love you so much… It was my last fight. No way I’m gonna come here again without my father. It was the first time after what happened with my father.”