A few days ago, driven by the increasing spread of the Coronavirus, Switzerland's Federal Council decided to ban any public event with more than 1,000 spectators until at least March 15. "The Russians have made us an offer. They said that, just in case, they would be ready to step in. And I thank them for that," IIHF president René Fasel tells Keystone-SDA.
The 70-year-old, however, also adds that it would be an illusion to think that all that could be changed at the last minute: "It's a bit utopian and not as simple as that. We will wait until March 15 to see what the Swiss government will decide about the further ban of events with more than 1,000 people. If the ban is maintained, we will sit down at the beginning of April to see what we can do. A final decision has to be taken on April 15, at the latest."
The 2020 IIHF World Championship is scheduled to be hosted by Switzerland from May 8-24, with the games being played in Lausanne and Zurich.