In this Feb 7, 2020 photo, Switzerland's Roger Federer reacts after his victory against Spain's Rafael Nadal during their tennis match at The Match in Africa at the Cape Town Stadium, in Cape Town. (RODGER BOSCH / AFP)
Roger Federer has joined the list of sports stars helping out the needy during the coronavirus pandemic, with the former world number one and his wife donating one million Swiss Francs (US$1.02 million) to vulnerable families in his native Switzerland.
Portugal and Juventus forward Cristiano Ronaldo and his agent Jorge Mendes also came together to donate lifesaving equipment to Portuguese hospitals
Barcelona forward Lionel Messi and Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola had each donated one million euros (US$1.08 million) to help clinics and medical centers fight the outbreak.
Messi has made his contribution to the fight against COVID-19 with a donation reported to be one million euros to hospitals in Argentina and also the Hospital Clinic in Barcelona. The Barcelona-based hospital confirmed the donation in a tweet.
The Hospital Clinic explained that the money would be used to help investigation into the virus and also to purchase ventilators to help people who need assisted breathing because of the virus.
Portugal and Juventus forward Cristiano Ronaldo and his agent Jorge Mendes also came together to donate lifesaving equipment to Portuguese hospitals.
"These are challenging times for everyone and nobody should be left behind," Federer wrote in a statement posted on Twitter on Wednesday.
“Mirka and I have personally decided to donate one million Swiss Francs for the most vulnerable families in Switzerland.”
Globally, more than 420,700 people have been infected by the novel coronavirus and 18,820 have died, according to a Reuters tally. Switzerland has nearly 9,900 confirmed cases with 122 deaths.
“Our contribution is just a start,” Federer added. “We hope that others might join in supporting more families in need. Together we can overcome this crisis.”
Federer, a 20-times Grand Slam winner, is currently recovering from a knee surgery he underwent last month and was targeting a return in June in time for Wimbledon.
The tennis season is, however, suspended until June 7 due to the pandemic.
With Xinhua input
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