Blizzard has announced it will cancel Overwatch League matches set to take place in China between February and March. In a statement posted to Twitter, the company writes that the move has been made in order to "protect the health and safety of our players". This is an allusion to the 2019 novel coronavirus, which has already caused 170 deaths, according to the Guardian (opens in new tab).
"We have decided to cancel our February and March matches in China in order to protect the health and safety of our players, fans, and staff," the statement (opens in new tab) reads. "We hope fans have a safe and happy Lunar New Year, and we remain incredibly excited to play Overwatch League matches in China later this season.
"We'll share more information about when and where the matches will take place at a later date."
This follows a similar move (opens in new tab) earlier this week by the Chinese League of Legends Pro League. Due to the spread of the virus, which is reported to have originated in the Hubei province, Chinese authorities have put strict travel restrictions in place around the area, including the suspension of air and rail travel.