The Latest: Former French rugby player dies with virus


The Latest on the effects of the coronavirus outbreak on sports around the world:


Former French rugby player Christophe Pras has died after getting infected by the coronavirus.

Several of his former clubs announced the death. He was 35.

The former under-18 France international had a short-lived professional career before going into coaching.

Pras is survived by his wife and two children.


The group charged with monitoring tennis gambling and punishing corruption found a near-doubling in the number of suspect matches in the first three months of 2020. That is an increase it ties to the coronavirus pandemic.

The London-based Tennis Integrity Unit’s quarterly report says it received a total of 38 alerts from the regulated betting industry about matches on lower-level tours from the start of the year through March 22.

That is up from 21 in the same period of 2019.

The 38 match alerts in the year’s first quarter break down as six from the ATP Challenger Tour and 16 apiece from the men’s and women’s International Tennis Federation World Tennis Tours.

The report concludes the jump indicates that entry levels of tennis “were deliberately targeted” as the sport moved toward suspension because of the outbreak of COVID-19.

All pro tours are on hold until at least mid-July.


The players and coach on Switzerland’s national soccer team have declined to take more than 1 million Swiss francs ($1.03 million) of payments that were due from their federation in 2020.

The team was scheduled to play in the now-postponed European Championship in June and had two games in Qatar canceled last month because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The shutdown of games has cost the Swiss soccer body millions of dollars.

Federation chairman Dominique Blanc says it’s a “magnificent gesture” from the players.

Blanc tested positive for the virus three weeks ago.

Team captain Stephan Lichtsteiner says “we wanted to set an example and show solidarity.”


The president of the International Paralympic Committee says the body has “cash-flow” problems because of the Olympic and Paralympic postponement until 2021.

Andrew Parsons says about 5% of spending is being cut from the IPC’s budget. A 2018 financial report showed a budget of 24 million euros ($25.7 million).

Parsons says the problem was due partly to broadcast rights holders who want to delay their payments until the product is delivered.

Parsons says it’s not a question of “losing money” but rather some temporary belt tightening.

He says “like all businesses we are tremendously affected by the COVID-19 crisis.”

He says he is dealing with 150 contracts that are games-related but adds “we have no plans to let any staff go at the moment.”


The track world championships in Eugene, Oregon, have been rescheduled for July 15-24, 2022.

The event was pushed back a year because the Tokyo Olympics were delayed until 2021 amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The track worlds were originally scheduled for Aug. 6-15, 2021.

World Athletics president Sebastian Coe says 2022 will be a “bonanza for athletics fans around the world” with the Commonwealth Games beginning in Birmingham, England, only three days after the track worlds.

The 2022 Commonwealth Games are scheduled for July 27-Aug. 7 and the multisport European Championship is currently slated for Aug. 11-21 in Munich.

World Athletics has also postponed the bidding processes for 2023 World Athletics Series events. They will now open in November 2020.


Formula One says it will furlough half of its staff until the end of May and senior executives will take pay cuts amid the coronavirus pandemic.

F1 has postponed eight races so far this season and the Monaco Grand Prix has been canceled.

F1 says senior leadership figures will take “voluntary pay cuts while still continuing to work and not in furlough.”

CEO Chase Carey will take a “much deeper” pay cut.

The McLaren and Williams teams had already put some staff on furlough schemes. McLaren drivers Lando Norris and Carlos Sainz have also taken pay cuts.

The season is currently scheduled to begin in France on June 28. F1 management has said it still hopes to hold between 15 and 18 races this year in place of the original 22.


A two-time Olympic finalist in the 800 meters has died after getting infected with the coronavirus.

The Italian Olympic Committee says Donato Sabia has died. He was 56.

CONI says he is the first Italian Olympian to die with the virus.

Sabia finished fifth in the 800 at the 1984 Los Angeles Games and seventh at the 1988 Seoul Games. He also won the 800 at the 1984 European Indoor Championships.

Sabia died in his hometown of Potenza in southern Italy shortly after his father also died from the virus.


More AP sports: and

A locked gate is seen by the Etihad Stadium where Manchester City was due to play Burnley in an English Premier League soccer match Saturday March 14, 2020, after all English soccer games were cancelled due to the spread of the COVID-19 Coronavirus. For most people, the new COVID-19 coronavirus causes only mild or moderate symptoms, but for some it can cause more severe illness.(AP Photo/Jon Super)