All Participants in Thailand Open Test Negative for Coronavirus, BWF Says More Tests Will Follow
Badminton (Photo Credit: AP)
All 824 participants, from 22 teams including 216 players and their entourage, along with all stakeholders who come into direct contact with them, have returned negative results for the coronavirus test, for the start of the Asian Leg with Yonex Thailand Open on Wednesday.
The members of the Green Zone quarantine bubble which include the players and their coaching teams as well as the umpires, line judges, personnel from Badminton World Federation, Badminton Association of Thailand, medical staff, and TV production crew, were tested for COVID-19.
"All international Green Zone participants were required to submit a negative in their own country before departure to Bangkok and were then tested again in Bangkok upon entry into hotel quarantine," BWF said in a press release.
"Local players, staff and personnel based in Thailand were also tested and quarantined as part of the Green Zone bubble. Players are now cleared for training under strict safety protocols. The quarantine measures will be in place throughout the mandatory 14-day observation period including during the staging of the YONEX Thailand Open," the release added.
All eyes will now be on the two Super 1000 events -- Yonex Thailand Open (January 12-17) and Toyota Thailand Open (January 19-24) as the world's best return to action following a prolonged break.
"More routine COVID-19 tests will follow with strict safety protocols to remain in place until the end of the Asian Leg, which concludes with the completion of the HSBC BWF World Tour Finals on 31 January 2021," the release added.
Earlier, Indian badminton star Saina Nehwal had complained that the players were not allowed access to the physios and trainers during the entire duration of four weeks for the tournaments, which hampered their ability to stay in good condition.
World number one pair Marcus Fernaldi Gideon and Kevin Sanjaya Sukamuljo had pulled out of the Asian Leg of the BWF World Tour after Sukamuljo tested positive for Covid-19.
There was a withdrawal in singles as well as with Nitchaon Jindapol injuring herself during training and Kento Momota also tested positive, prompting the withdrawal of all Japan's players. Chinese players are not travelling to Bangkok due to strict travel restrictions.