LONDON – Several sporting events in Britain have been canceled out of respect following the death of Queen Elizabeth II at the age of 96 on Thursday.
The organizers of the BMW PGA Championship golf event responded to the announcement of the Queen’s death by immediately suspending play, with many players still on the course at Wentworth. The course and practice facilities are closed on Friday.
The England and Wales Cricket Board said Friday’s game in the second Test between England and South Africa at the Oval would not take place.
Horse racing rallies in Britain were suspended Thursday evening and Friday as the governing body “wanted to remember her extraordinary life and contribution to our sport and our nation”.
Domestic rugby matches in England and Scotland were canceled on Thursday and no matches will be played over the weekend either.
Friday’s stage in the Tour of Britain has been cancelled, with a decision to be made on the last two stages of the weekend in due course.
The Premier League paid its respects to the royal family and said it was “deeply saddened” to learn of the Queen’s passing. It was not immediately said whether the games would continue this weekend.
The English Football League, which manages the three divisions under the Premier League, has canceled matches scheduled to be played Friday night and said a decision would be made on weekend games Friday morning after talks with the British government and the wider sport.
Manchester United’s Europa League match against Real Sociedad took place hours after the announcement of the Queen’s death. There was a minute’s silence before kick-off at Old Trafford, with both teams wearing black armbands and flags in the stadium at half-mast as a sign of respect.
There was no pre-match music and the digital billboards around the field were turned off.
There was a minute’s silence in other European matches involving British teams such as Arsenal, West Ham and Hearts.
The US Tennis Association has announced that there will be a moment of silence on Thursday evening before the US Open women’s first semifinal match, between Ons Jabeur and Caroline Garcia, “to commemorate the passing of Queen Elizabeth II.”
The tributes also poured in.
Brazilian football great Pele tweeted about his admiration for the Queen since meeting her in person in 1968 when she visited the Maracana in Rio de Janeiro.
“Her actions have marked generations,” Pele wrote. “This legacy will last forever.”
The All England Club, home of the Wimbledon tennis tournament, said the Queen has carried out her duties “with great wisdom, dignity and charm for 70 years”.
The Queen was the royal patroness of the Welsh Rugby Union, who thanked her for “years of service on this deeply sad day”.