The outbreak of coronavirus pandemic has brought the world to a still with roads deserted, cities abandoned and events cancelled. With over 21, 000 deaths and close to five lakh people diagnosed with the pandemic, COVID-19 has drawn analogies with World War I & II. Such has been its devastation that most countries, including India, have declared complete lockdown to somehow curb and contain the spread of coronavirus. The sporting world haven't been spared either with events across the globe either suspended until further notice or called-off for the year. From the 2020 Tokyo Olympics to Premier League and even the America Basketball NBA, almost all sporting events have been postponed. Coronavirus Outbreak: From Arsenal Manager Mikel Arteta to NBA Player Rudy Gobert, Here's A List of Sports Personalities Who've Tested Positive for COVID-19.
But amidst the global devastation, frightening pace of deaths and crisis, coronavirus has also united the world in coming together and fighting as one against the pandemic. Many have come forward to support their governments in fighting and tackling the COVID-19 epidemic and among them are several Sporting associations and sports personalities, who have donated and made huge contributions in helping their counties battle the pandemic and save humanity. From Cristiano Ronaldo funding intensive care units (ICU) for several hospitals in Portugal to Lionel Messi and Roger Federer donating 1 million each, let's take a look at all the sporting personalities, who have contributed in battling the coronavirus. Coronavirus Scare: List of Sporting Events Suspended or Cancelled Due to COVID-19.
1 Gary Neville – Long before any sports star had even thought of making a contribution, former Manchester United and England right-back Gary Neville decided to accommodate and shelter all NHS (National Health Service) staff for free in the two hotels he co-owns with Ryan Giggs.
2 Toby Alderweireld – The Tottenham Hotspur and Belgium centre-back went out of his way and pledged to provide tablet computers to hospitals to ensure those affected by COVI-19 can video chat and talk to their families
3 Robert Lewandowski – Poland and Bayern Munich striker and his wife Anna donated 1 million euros for victims of coronavirus pandemic
4 Leon Goretzka and Joshua Kimmich – Germany and Bayern Munich teammates started the “We Kick Corona” funding campaign to raise money for the COVID-19 victims and also donated 1 million to the cause
5 Irfan & Yusuf Pathan - The Pathan brothers of Indian cricket team donated 4000 masks to the Baroda Health Department to help those fighting against the virus to protect themselves
6 Lionel Messi – The Argentina and Barcelona superstar donated 1 million euros to the Hospital Clinic, a public hospital in Barcelona. The six-time Ballon d’Or winner was also reported to have donated an undisclosed sum to hospitals in Argentina
7 Cristiano Ronaldo – The Juventus and Portuguese star joined hands with agent Jorge Mendes to donate 1 million to fund ICUs in two hospitals in Portugal and also funds more beds in those hospitals
8 Pep Guardiola – The Manchester City manager and former Spanish and Barcelona payer donated 1 million to a Barcelona-based Angel Soler Daniel Foundation and pledged to donate more
9 Shahid Afridi - The former Pakistan captain and his foundation have been giving free ration, masks, disinfectant soaps and sheets to many poor people in Pakistan.
10 Roger Federer – 20-time Grand Salam champion and Tennis superstar, Roger Federer donated 1 million Swiss francs to support “most vulnerable” citizens in Switzerland
11 Conor McGregor UFC fighter Conor McGregor donated protective equipment worth 1 million Euros to deployed in hospitals in Ireland
12 Amir Khan – England boxer Amir Khan has offered his four-storey building to accommodate the National Health Service (NHS) staff for free as they treat and battle against the pandemic
13 Sourav Ganguly – The former Indian captain and current BCCI president joined hands with Lal Baba Rice to provide rice worth up to Rs 50 Lakh for people struggling to meet ends due to nation-wide lockdown
14 PV Sindhu – Badminton World Champions and India’s highest-ranked shuttler, PV Sindhu, has donated Rs 5 Lakh each to the Telangana and Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister’s Fund in their fight against COVI-19
15 MS Dhoni - The former Indian captain and a cricket legend, MS Dhoni donated Rs 1 Lakh through a crowdfunding website Ketto to the Mukul Mahadev Foundation NGO
16 Hima Das - India's first World Championships gold medallist in athletics and one of the country's biggest medal hopes, Hima Das pledged that she will donate a one month's salary to Assam's COVI-19 relief fund
17 Bajrang Punia - Asian & Commonwealth Games Gold Medallist, Bajrang Punia pledged to donate six months' salary to support the fight against COVID-19
18 Gautam Gambhir - World Cup winner and cricketer-turned-politician, Gautam Gambhir, donated Rs 50 Lakh to the Delhi Chief Minister's relief funs and pledged for more to ensure citizens of the state are given adequate equipment to fight the pandemic
19 Sachin Tendulkar - Cricket God and a legend in the country, Sachin Tendulkar has donated Rs 50 Lakh -- each 25 of which will go to the Prime Minister's relief fund and the Maharashtra Cheif Minister's relief fund
20 Rafael Nadal - Spanish tennis superstar and 19-time Grand Slam champion, Rafael Nadal has donated an undisclosed sum and also urged other athletes from Spain to come forward and support the fight against the Pandemic.
While all these players and sporting superstars have contributed in huge numbers to support the world in its fight against the deadly virus, many clubs and sporting associations have also come forward to lend their support in the battle against COVID-19.
German clubs Borussia Monchengladbach and Union Berlin’s players agreed to forgo their salaries to help their club survive the crisis, while the Bengal Cricket Association (CAB) donated Rs 25 lakh to the state administration. CAB president Avishek Ganguly also donated Rs 5 lakh from his own end to support medical staffs and provide better medical facilities to victims of COVID-19.
The German national team football players also donated 2.5 million in German currency to the country’s government to provide more medical support. Centrally contracted Pakistan cricketers donated Rs 5 million to the national emergency fund, while Bangladesh cricketers also pledged to donate half their monthly salaries to their government to support the fight against coronavirus.
(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Mar 26, 2020 02:23 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website latestly.com).