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Wimbledon will allow full crowd at Centre Court for finals

Virus Outbreak Britain Wimbledon Tennis

A view of the empty No.1 Court at the All England Lawn Tennis Club in Wimbledon, London Saturday June 27, 2020 the weekend before The Championships were due to start. The 2020 Wimbledon Tennis Championships were cancelled due to the Coronavirus pandemic. (Bob Martin/AELTC via AP)

AP

LONDON -- Wimbledon will be allowed to have a full crowd of 15,000 at Centre Court for the men’s and women’s finals next month, a year after the tournament was canceled entirely because of the coronavirus pandemic, the British government said.

The grass-court Grand Slam tournament, which begins June 28, can have 50% capacity at the start and that will increase to 100% by the close on July 10-11 with the women’s and men’s singles title matches.

The government’s decision to ease COVID-19 restrictions on crowds will also allow for increased attendances at soccer’s European Championship and other sporting events.

“We want to gather further evidence on how we can open up all big events safely, and for good,” Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden said in a statement. “In the next few weeks this means more fans enjoying the Euros and Wimbledon, and some of our biggest cultural and sports events.”

Wimbledon’s cancellation in 2020 was the first time since World War II that the tournament hadn’t been played.