LEEDS, England — A swath of sporting events across Britain were canceled in the hours after the death of Queen Elizabeth II, with most likely to remain on hiatus through the weekend as a mark of respect.
Representatives from various sporting organizations were called to a meeting with the Department of Culture, Media and Sport on Friday morning, with the government’s guidance expected to allow each sport to choose its own response.
“The decision as to whether sporting fixtures continue to go ahead is at the discretion of organizers,” the department said in a statement.
Those with events scheduled for Friday had already moved unilaterally to cancel them.
Horse racing — the sport closest to the queen’s heart — called off all of its scheduled meetings for Friday. The British Horseracing Authority is expected to make a decision on Friday on when it will resume. On Thursday, it was announced that both the second day’s play in the cricket test match between England and South Africa at the Oval, in London, and golf’s P.G.A. Championship would not take place. The Tour of Britain cycling race was canceled entirely, with three days’ racing remaining.
Professional soccer, as of Friday morning, was awaiting the government’s advice before making a decision on its games this weekend. Several clubs played on Thursday night in continental European competitions, with players wearing black armbands and crowds observing a minute’s silence. Two fixtures in the second-tier Championship, scheduled for Friday, were postponed.
It was not yet clear whether dozens of soccer games in the English Premier League and the Football League scheduled to be played on Saturday and Sunday would take place. The precedent is unclear: Although games were canceled after the death of Diana, Princess of Wales, in 1997, games were played when the queen’s father, King George VI, died in 1952.
The leagues also face a decision on how to rearrange games scheduled to be played close to the queen’s state funeral, which is expected to be held next weekend.