Sporting bodies to decide on weekend schedule after Queen Elizabeth's death

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Sporting Bodies To Decide On Weekend Schedule After Queen Elizabeth's Death Sporting Bodies To Decide On Weekend Schedule After Queen Elizabeth's Death
The big screen displays a message in memoriam following the announcement of the death of Queen Elizabeth II, © PA Wire/PA Images
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By PA Sport Staff

Decisions over whether to postpone this weekend’s sporting events in the wake of the death of Her Majesty the Queen will be left to individual organisers.

The call on whether to go ahead will be made following consideration of official mourning guidance, set to be issued by the Cabinet Office.

However, the PA news agency understands it will be left to individual organisations to choose how to proceed and postponements will not be mandatory.

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A meeting involving representatives from sports governing bodies and the Government is scheduled for Friday morning.

However, the Irish Football Association issued a statement at 9.23am on Friday which read: “As a mark of respect following the passing of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, this weekend’s fixtures across all affiliated football in Northern Ireland, and all other organised football activity, at all levels, have been postponed.”

A number of sporting events listed for Friday have already been postponed following the death of Elizabeth II, who was the nation’s longest-reigning monarch after serving as head of state for more than 70 years.

The England and Wales Cricket Board announced play in the men’s third Test between England and South Africa at The Oval would not take place, while the English Football League postponed two matches: Burnley v Norwich in the Championship and Tranmere v Stockport in League Two.

The sixth stage of the Tour of Britain was initially cancelled before organisers later took the decision to cancel the remaining last two stages and use Thursday’s standings as final classification.

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Friday’s Great North 5K will not take place, while the Scottish Rugby Union announced the suspension of all competitive domestic matches under its jurisdiction this weekend.

Rugby league’s Betfred Championship fixture between Sheffield Eagles and Dewsbury Rams on Friday has been postponed but the Super League Elimination Play-Off being played in Perpignan will go ahead with the players of Catalans Dragons and Leeds Rhinos wearing black armbands.

The SPFL’s cinch Championship contest between Dundee and Cove Rangers on Friday has been postponed with an update on Saturday’s fixtures scheduled for later in the day.

Play was suspended on the first day of the PGA Championship golf at Wentworth when news of The Queen’s death was announced, and the DP World Tour confirmed there would be no play on Friday.

A Tour statement on Friday said: “We remain hopeful of restarting the BMW PGA Championship at some stage over the weekend but will take that decision once we have had the chance to review protocol guidance from Buckingham Palace in addition to aligning with what other major sporting events in the UK are doing.”

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Manchester United’s home Europa League match with Real Sociedad went ahead on Thursday – as did Arsenal’s in Zurich – with a minute’s silence held before kick-off, teams wearing black armbands and flags flying at half-mast.

West Ham and Hearts, both at home, also played their Europa Conference League matches with similar marks of respect.

However, none of the English sides held press conferences after their matches.

Friday’s weigh-in for the women’s world title fight between Savannah Marshall and Claressa Shields will take place behind closed doors.

Promoters Boxxer are expected to issue a statement on the status of the bout, which is scheduled to take place at the O2 in London on Saturday, later on Friday.

“An announcement regarding the status of Saturday’s event.. will be made following consultation with relevant government and sports sector bodies and will be made at the earliest possible opportunity,” their statement read.

Shields, the double Olympic champion from the US, tweeted: “My condolences to the people of the UK. Rest in peace, Queen Elizabeth.”

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