Netball Tasmania claimed a safe approach in calling off its State League competition.
The decision had occurred just hours before Northern Hawks and Cavaliers were to run out onto the Silverdome court in Friday night's derby.
The move to postpone the grand final rematch caught out both clubs, having been forced to contact players and officials at the eleventh hour.
The ban over the spread of Coronavirus is the first sporting competition in Tasmania to be hit and will continue over the weekend of third-round State League matches.
Netball Tasmania's chief executive Aaron Pidgeon felt an obligation to the health of not only the clubs but to the supporters in attendance.
A crowd of more than 500 was expected for the first crosstown clash since Cavaliers defeated Hawks 65-59 for the title, but Pidgeon said new government measures to avoid all mass gatherings had not been the catalyst to cancel netball over the state.
"The reality is we have been monitoring the situation for a while," Pidgeon said.
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"We've been taking advice from Netball Australia and the various parties that we're consulting. We reached a point on [Friday] afternoon around that annoucement.
"We felt that the sport and all our member associations needed more time to consider the risks and controls that needed to be put in place to ensure in clear conscious we were operating in the safest environment possible.
"Whilst the decision was extraordinarily difficult, it's one that we felt we needed to make and we hope will only be a short-term impact."
Part of Netball Tasmania's considerations was to follow Cricket Australia and the AFL to play inside empty arenas.
That still may happen in the coming weeks to ensure the State League continues after the opening two rounds of competition had played out last weekend in Hobart.
"It was considered and will be again moving forward, but I guess the due considerations were with the timing of things. We reached a point [Friday] afternoon that we didn't have time to make up adequate plans around that kind of thing," Pidgeon said.
"It was more of a matter we needed to press pause to make sure everyone had time to reflect, consider the risks, but certainly playing without spectators will be something we need to consider."
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