Serie A games postponed after Coronavirus deaths
Three Serie A matches scheduled for Sunday in the northern regions of Lombardy and Veneto have been postponed late after the deaths of two people infected with the coronavirus.
On orders from the Italian government, games between Inter Milan and Sampdoria, Atalanta and Sassuolo and Hellas Verona and Cagliari were pushed back.
Three other matches in Genoa, Turin and Rome on Sunday will proceed as scheduled.
A dozen towns in northern Italy effectively went into lockdown on Saturday after the deaths of two people infected with the virus from China, and a growing cluster of cases with no direct links to the origin of the outbreak abroad.
"The government is working on urgent measures to decisively confront and contain the cases of coronavirus contagion," a letter from Sports Minister Vincenzo Spadafora to Italian Olympic Committee president Giovanni Malago on Saturday read.
"Those measures also include the sports world in order to prevent risks and to better take care of the health of those involved in the events and competition.
"Following measures taken by the cabinet for protective reasons and maximum precaution, on orders of the government I'm asking you to suspend all sports events of every level and discipline planned for the Lombardy and Veneto regions on Sunday."
On Saturday, the Ascoli-Cremonese game in Serie B was postponed, as well as Piacenza-Sambenedettese in Serie C.
Four Serie C games scheduled for Sunday have also been postponed. On Thursday, Inter are scheduled to host Ludogrets in the second leg of the Europa League Round of 32.
Sports events across China and Asia have also been suspended, amid fears that the Tokyo Olympics in five months could also be affected.
The AFL is yet to decide whether its scheduled match between Port Adelaide and St Kilda will go ahead.