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China forfeits Davis Cup tie in Romania due to virus

TENNIS-DAVIS-CUP-FRA-CRO

The Davis Cup trophy is displayed during the draw on the eve of the Davis Cup tennis final between France and Croatia at the Pierre Mauroy Stadium in Villeneuve-d’Ascq, northern France, on November 22, 2018. (Photo by DENIS CHARLET / AFP) (Photo credit should read DENIS CHARLET/AFP via Getty Images)

AFP via Getty Images

LONDON -- China forfeited a Davis Cup tie on Tuesday because its men’s tennis team cannot travel to Romania next month.

The International Tennis Federation cited “increased restrictions in response to the current coronavirus outbreak” for the decision.

China was to play in Piatra Neamt, Romania, on March 6-7 in a World Group I playoff.

The ITF said Romania will advance to a World Group I tie in September. China will drop into World Group II.

The death toll in mainland China due to the virus named COVID-19 had risen to almost 1,900 on Tuesday, with more than 72,000 confirmed cases.

The outbreak has caused numerous sports events in China to be cancelled, postponed, or moved, and has affected the ability of Chinese teams to travel for competition.