January 26, 2020 / 4:46 PM / 22 days ago

Fed Cup group moved out of China over coronavirus fears

FILE PHOTO: Tennis - Fed Cup - World Group II Playoffs - Japan v Netherlands - ITC Utsubo Tennis Center, Osaka, Japan - April 20, 2019 - Lesley Kerkhove collects the towels after a match between Nao Hibino of Japan and Bibiane Schoofs of the Netherlands. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon

LONDON (Reuters) - Next month’s Fed Cup Asia/Oceania Group I event has been moved out of China over concerns at the ongoing coronavirus outbreak which has so far killed 56 people in the country.

A statement from the International Tennis Federation (ITF) said the group event from Feb 4-8 featuring China, Taiwan, India, Indonesia, South Korea and Uzbekistan had been switched from Dongguan to Nur-Sultan (formerly Astana) in Kazakhstan.

“The decision to move the event to a different venue was taken due to increasing travel restrictions in China at the present time and followed consultation with independent security advisors,” a statement read.

Two of the nations will progress to the Fed Cup play-offs in April.

Earlier this week the International Olympic Committee cancelled Olympic boxing qualifiers due to take place in Wuhan, China next month.

Olympic soccer qualifiers involving Australia, Taiwan, Thailand and China have also been moved from Nanjing, China, to Sydney, the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) said in a statement on Sunday.

Reporting by Martyn Herman, editing by Pritha Sarkar

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