COVID-19, more commonly known as the coronavirus, continues to haunt the League of Legends esports scene. After the indefinite pause on the League of Legends Pro League in China and the League of Legends Championship Korea's decision to play matches without viewers and press, now the official Japanese League has decided to continue the rest of its Spring Split without an audience.
The statement made by the LJL reads: "Due to the spread of the new coronavirus, the LJL 2020 Spring Split, ongoing at the moment, will not be open to the public starting week 5 on Sunday, March 1st, to protect the safety of all visitors. The content will still be distributed on all platforms, so we hope you enjoy that." People who had purchased tickets to attend LJL matches will receive an email with further instructions.
The rarely lethal, but highly infectious coronavirus has left a stain on esports as a whole in 2020 so far. Aside from the aforementioned measures taken in League of Legends other publishers have moved events from high-risk countries. The Overwatch League has tried moving around its China-based homestands, and last week Hearthstone esports announced that its planned Masters Tour in Indonesia would be moved to Los Angeles to avoid as much risk as possible.