MOSCOW, May 27. /TASS/. The Russia-based Kontinental Hockey League (KHL) has notified all of the league’s participating clubs that the provisionally set date for the next 2020/2021 season was set for September 2, KHL’s press service announced in a statement on Wednesday.
The league’s press office said in its statement that the starting date of the season’s matches would first of all depend on the national requirements regarding the ongoing global spread of the novel coronavirus and on the gradual lift of restrictions, which are in force in the regions across Russia as well as in the countries, from which many foreign KHL players come from.
The Kontinental Hockey League was founded in Russia in 2008 and currently lists 24 professional ice hockey clubs from Russia, Belarus, China, Finland, Kazakhstan and Latvia. International experts deem the KHL as the premier ice hockey league in Europe and Asia ranking it as the world’s second most important right on the heels of the US-based NHL (National Hockey League).
In late December 2019, Chinese officials notified the World Health Organization (WHO) about the outbreak of a previously unknown pneumonia in the city of Wuhan, in central China. Since then, cases of the novel coronavirus - named COVID-19 by the WHO - have been reported in every corner of the globe, including Russia.
On March 11, 2020, the WHO declared the coronavirus outbreak a pandemic. According to the latest statistics, over 5,719,000 people have been infected worldwide and more than 353,000 deaths have been reported. In addition, so far, over 2,456,500 individuals have recovered from the illness across the globe.
To date, a total of 370,680 coronavirus cases have been confirmed in Russia, with 142,208 patients having recovered from the disease. Russia’s latest data indicates 3,968 fatalities nationwide. Earlier, the Russian government set up an Internet hotline to keep the public updated on the coronavirus situation.