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Pokémon competitive circuit canceled for 2020 due to coronavirus

Two international tournaments are both canceled

Pokemon Sword and Shield trainers Game Freak/The Pokémon Company, Nintendo via Polygon
Cass Marshall is a news writer focusing on gaming and culture coverage, taking a particular interest in the human stories of the wild world of online games.

The Pokémon Company has canceled the 2020 Play! Pokémon competitive leagues. This includes the two international tournaments expected to be held across two continents, due to concerns around the COVID-19 pandemic.

The 2020 North American International Championship matches were scheduled for June 26-28 in Columbus, Ohio, and the World Championships were to be held in London Aug. 14-16. With these two keystone events now canceled, the Championship Series is suspended, and all matches at all competitive tiers are canceled until further notice.

The Play! Pokémon league covers both the trading card game and the video game, and governs the “premier challenge” for Pokémon Sword and Shield players as well as the League Challenge for ongoing card game players.

No championship points will be awarded over the remainder of the season; instead, all 2020 points will roll over to the next season of Play! Pokémon in 2021. All invitations to these tournaments will also be honored for the 2021 World Championships.

In a statement, tournament organizers wrote, “We hope that the spirit of friendship and community that are the hallmarks of our amazing fans and these events continue during this challenging time, and that you take care of yourselves and of each other. We can’t wait to see you and celebrate with you again.”

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