Sport across the globe ground to a halt in March due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As safety measures have increased, sports fans and bettors have begun to wonder; when will major sports leagues return? This article will be regularly updated with all of the information you need about when different sports will return around the world.
Note: This article was last updated on June 15, 2020.
The Bundesliga is currently the only major soccer league that has officially returned. The German top flight and second division resumed play on May 16, with Bundesliga odds now available on Pinnacle. You can also read our Bundesliga predictions article or listen to Pinnacle's Bundesliga Insights podcast to help you make informed decisions before betting on this weekend's action.
Other soccer leagues, such as the Belarus Premier League and K League are also still running with Belarus Premier League odds and K League odds also available on Pinnacle.
The Premier League is now also set to resume on June 17, as Aston Villa host Sheffield United and Manchester City welcome Arsenal to the Etihad Stadium and Premier League odds are available at Pinnacle.
When will the Premier League be back?
Premier League clubs have now agreed to a date for the 2019/20 season to resume which will be Wednesday, June 17, after being away for 100 days because of the coronavirus pandemic.
The full fixture list, including kick-off times, for the first 32 matches has now been announced, and they will be played across the weekend of 19-21 June.
We will continue to provide notable updates on the Premier League as and when they happen.
When will Serie A resume?
Italy's sports minister Vincenzo Spadafora has confirmed the Serie A will return on June 20, with Torino vs. Parma and Verona vs. Cagliari being the first fixtures back.
The Serie A was the first of Europe’s major soccer leagues to be postponed when fixtures were called off in late February.
The FIGC has announced that the Serie A has a deadline of August 20 to complete the season.
If fixtures cannot be fullfilled, the introduction of playoffs or playouts are being considered.
This article will be updated on a daily basis, so you can continue to check back for the latest information on when the return of Serie A.
When will La Liga start again?
Spain’s La Liga is in a similar position to the domestic league in Italy, the country has suffered dramatically in terms of its infection rate, but the return of its major sports leagues is now being planned for. La Liga will restart with Sevilla vs. Real Betis on June 11.
Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez gave permission for the country's top two divisions to resume from June 8.
La Liga will also feature virtualised stands that will offer to-scale images of seated fans wearing the colours of the home club
Updates will continue to be monitored in this article so check back here to get up to speed with the return of La Liga.
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The ATP and WTA announced in mid-March that their professional tennis tours would be suspended until at least June 7, but this has since been extended until July 13. This has obviously impacted numerous events. Given that tennis is played in a way that results in no contact between players (in singles matches at least), a return to action should be a lot easier to manage compared to other sports.
When will the ATP and WTA tennis season start?
We are currently at the point of the ATP tour where some of the biggest events in the tennis calendar (outside of Grand Slams) would be played. The Madrid Open and Italian Open are both ATP Tour Masters 1000 events and usually take place in May. These would be followed by a few smaller clay court events before the French Open.
The same can be said for the WTA tour as it closely reflects the men’s tour with the Madrid Open, Italian Open and two lower ranked events before the French Open at the end of May.
The current planned return date would make the Hamburg European Open on July 13 the first ATP event after the tour postponement caused by COVID-19. The first event for the WTA tour would be the Bucharest Open on July 15.
What tennis majors will be played this year?
In addition to the ATP and WTA tour events, a lot of tennis fans and bettors have been looking forward to when the tennis majors will return. The Australian Open has already been played and Wimbledon has officially been cancelled. This leaves the French Open and US Open that would normally take place in May and August respectively.
The French Open will now take place between September 20 and October 4, with a very high likelihood that no fans will be able to attend. As for the US Open, it seems that tournament organisers are still committed to the original start date of August 31 with no announcement yet made about any changes to the schedule or fans attending the event.
Many sports and leagues around the world have simply postponed the action until further notice. In addition to this, there are some competitions that have been completely cancelled, such as this year’s NCAA March Madness tournament.
Although college basketball has completely stopped, hope still remains for biggest league in the sport (the NBA) to start up again and finish its season. The safety of players is paramount but with a rigorous testing system, it seems like the prospect of watching and betting on competitive basketball games is getting closer and closer.
When will the NBA return?
The 2019-20 NBA season began an indefinite hiatus on March 11 after Utah Jazz centre Rudy Gobert tested positive for the COVID-19. At the time of the hiatus, most teams had played between 63-65 out of the 82 regular season games.
To resume the season, 22 teams in playoff contention (six games within the eighth seed) have been invited to play out the regular season in an eight-game wrap-up. Games will be played at venues inside Walt Disney World's ESPN Wide World of Sports compound in Orlando, Florida.
If a team is within four games of the eighth seed in a conference at the end of the seeding games, there will be a play-in tournament to determine the eighth playoff seed.
The games will start on July 30 with Utah Jazz vs. New Orleans Pelicans and Los Angeles Lakers vs. Los Angeles Clippers.
Updates will continue to be monitored in this article so check back here to get all the latest NBA news.
When will the 2020 MLB season start?
The current aim for the MLB season to start is for early July, with the season potentially beginning on the weekend of July 4.
MLB has delayed the start of the 2020 season, which was originally due to begin on March 26. It is likely that the season will be shortened due to the delay, however the league has committed to playing as many games as possible during 2020.
Currently an 82-game regular season is looking most likely with fixtures played behind closed doors.
Other baseball leagues
In Japan the NPB is set to start on June 19 2020 without fans. In Korea, the baseball season is already underway with the KBO starting its season in early Ma. KBO odds are available at Pinnacle.
The PGA Tour made its long-awaited return with the Charles Schwab Challenge earlier this month. The other PGA Tour events set to take place in June are the rearranged RBC Heritage tournament from June 18-21 and the Travelers Championship from June 25-28.
The European Tour is set to return behind closed doors in July with a schedule of rearranged and certain one-off events. This starts with the British Masters hosted by Lee Westwood from July 22-25, followed by the English Open from July 30-August 2, the English Championship from August 6-9, the Celtic Classic from August 13-16, the Wales Open from August 20-23 and the UK Championship from August 27-30.
Among the other significant non-Major golf tournaments set to take place this year is the Ryder Cup, which is still scheduled for September 25-27 at the Whistling Straits course in Wisconsin. Team Europe are 2.210* to defend their trophy while the US are 1.704* to win on home soil.
When will the golf Majors be played?
All four of the golf Majors have undergone rescheduling or cancellations this year. The PGA Championship has been moved from May 14-17 to August 6-9, when it will still be held at the TPC Harding Park but will now serve as the only Major of the 2019-20 PGA Tour season.
The US Open has been pushed back from June 18-21 to September 17-20 and will still be held at Winged Foot Golf Club in New York. The Masters has moved from April 9-12 to November 12-15 and will be contested at the Augusta National Golf Club. The Open has been postponed until 2021, when it will take place at this year’s intended venue of Royal St George’s in Kent, England.
American football is one sport that has gone largely unaffected by the COVID-19 pandemic due to the scheduling of seasons across the NFL and NCAA. The 2020 seasons for these leagues were due to start in September and late August respectively, and these dates are still in place until further notice from the league.
What will happen with the NFL season?
While NFL games are yet to be impacted like other sports, the NFL draft did have to shift from the live in-person spectacle we’ve witnessed in previous years to a video conference-based virtual event.
The NFL schedule was released on May 7 and can perhaps be seen as a signal of intent from the league to stick to the original start date for the season. As the start of the season approaches, we may learn more about delays, the removal of bye weeks to free up time to conclude the season in the normal time or an amended schedule.
As yet, there is limited information to be officially released by the NFL but this article will be updated as soon as any relevant news breaks.
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