UK sporting fixtures cancelled on day of mourning for Queen Elizabeth
A number of sporting fixtures in the UK are being called off as mark of respect for Queen Elizabeth.
The UK's longest reigning monarch died on Thursday (08.09.22) aged 96, plunging the country into mourning and a number of sporting events have been paused, including football's fixtures from Friday (09.09.22) to Monday (12.09.22), which are being rescheduled for a later date.
The decision was made following a meeting on Friday morning (09.09.22) and the Premier League said in a statement: "At a meeting this morning, Premier League clubs paid tribute to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.
"To honour her extraordinary life and contribution to the nation, and as a mark of respect, this weekend’s Premier League match round will be postponed, including Monday evening’s game."
Richard Masters, Premier League Chief Executive, added: "We and our clubs would like to pay tribute to Her Majesty’s long and unwavering service to our country.
"As our longest-serving monarch, she has been an inspiration and leaves behind an incredible legacy following a life of dedication.
"This is a tremendously sad time for not just the nation, but also for the millions of people around the world who admired her, and we join together with all those in mourning her passing."
Several top flight clubs including Arsenal and Manchester United were in action for Europa League fixtures on Thursday night (08.09.22) and those games went ahead despite the sad news.
The EFL have also confirmed this weekend's fixtures are off.
A statement from the English Football League said: "Further to discussions on Friday morning it has been determined that all EFL fixtures from 9-10 September will be postponed as a mark of respect by the National Sport to the passing of HRH Queen Elizabeth II.
"This is aligned with the approach that the Premier League and the FA will take with their competitions this weekend.
"Further information, in respect of how football, Clubs and their supporters will commemorate Her Majesty’s reign will be confirmed at an appropriate point.
"Details regarding rearranged games will be announced in due course."
In the Scottish Professional Football League, the planned clash between Cove Rangers and Dundee has been postponed with an announcement due later on Friday in regard to the league's weekend's matches.
On Friday (09.09.22), the England cricket team's test match against South Africa at the Oval in London was called off as well as the PGA golf championship at Wentworth in Surrey.
It is not yet known whether both events will continue at some point over the weekend.
Cycling event the Tour of Britain had been due to conclude on the Isle of Wight on Sunday (11.09.22) but it has now been cancelled, while the third day of horse racing at the St Leger festival in Doncaster has also been suspended and all fixtures have been pulled until Sunday.
The British Horseracing Authority said: "As an ongoing mark of respect it has been determined that, alongside the cancellation of fixtures on 8 and 9 September, all racing will also be cancelled tomorrow, Saturday 10 September.
"Scheduled fixtures and racing events will return on Sunday 11 September.
"An additional day of racing at Doncaster will also be scheduled for Sunday 11 September, to ensure that the Cazoo St Leger and other important races lost as result of the cancellations can take place.
"However, the fixture scheduled for Musselburgh racecourse on Sunday will be cancelled as a mark of respect for the fact that the Queen’s body will be lying in rest in Edinburgh.
"Cancelling racing on Saturday will also allow the sport, and in particular those people involved who had a close relationship with the royal family, to take in the formal proclamation of King Charles III’s reign on Saturday afternoon."
In rugby, the Premiership Rugby Cup game between Northampton and Saracens was postponed on Thursday night, but an announcement about upcoming Premiership games is expected on Friday (09.08.22).
The Super League play-off match between Catalans Dragons and Leeds Rhinos is expected to go ahead as planned on Friday night as it is being played in Perpignan, France.
The UK government released a statement explaining organisers are not obligated to cancel fixtures during the 17-day period of national mourning which was announced by King Charles on Friday, but suggested they show respect by playing the UK's National Anthem, holding a moment of silence or allowing players to wear black armbands.
It was also suggested that sporting fixtures should not go ahead at the same time as the Queen's funeral, which is scheduled for 10 days after her death.
The statement read: "There is no obligation to cancel or postpone events and sporting fixtures, or close entertainment venues during the National Mourning period. This is at the discretion of individual organisations.
"As a mark of respect, organisations might wish to consider cancelling or postponing events or closing venues on the day of the State Funeral. They are under no obligation to do so and this is entirely at the discretion of individual organisations.
"If sporting fixtures or events are planned for the day of the State Funeral, organisations may want to adjust the event timings so they do not clash with the timings of the funeral service and associated processions.
"As a mark of respect, and in keeping with the tone of National Mourning, organisers may wish to hold a period of silence and/or play the National Anthem at the start of events or sporting fixtures, and players may wish to wear black armbands."