Wimbledon is set to go ahead next year even if the Grand Slam tournament has to be staged behind closed doors, organisers announced on Friday.

The grasscourt championships were cancelled this year for the first time since World War II because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The organisers said in a statement that they are planning for next year’s championships and are considering multiple operational scenarios at this point in time, given that there is still time for the next year’s edition.

“Staging the championships in 2021 is our number-one priority and we are actively engaged in scenario-planning in order to deliver on that priority,” chief executive Sally Bolton was quoted as saying.

The All England Club is planning for several scenarios for 2021 – a full-capacity event, reduced-capacity tournament or holding it with no fans present. The 134th championships will be staged from June 28 to July 11, 2021.

“These scenarios fall into three broad categories: a full capacity Championships, a reduced capacity Championships, and a ‘behind closed doors’ Championships, all of which are dependent on the status of government and public health guidelines.

“Our overriding priority will continue to be the health and safety of all of our stakeholders, in particular our guests, our staff, and our competitors. We are working closely with the relevant government and public health authorities, alongside the rest of the sports industry, to understand the varying challenges and opportunities presented by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic,” Wimbledon said in their statement.

With AFP Inputs