All England badminton: Three Indian shuttlers test positive for COVID-19 ahead of tournament

Three Indian shuttlers have tested positive for COVID-19 ahead of the All England Championship while a few are awaiting confirmation on their inconclusive samples as India’s campaign has been thrown into chaos before the start of the tournament, starting on Wednesday (March 17). 

A member of the support staff has also tested positive, leaving the players without much practice. 

“We have three players and one member from the support staff who have tested positive. I find it completely absurd how this can happen, since we have been isolated in Zurich since the Swiss Open started two weeks ago,” India’s Danish foreign coach Mathais Boe was quoted as saying by sport.Tv2.Dk. 

“We have been tested 5 times in 14 days and all tests have been negative. We have only gotten along with each other, so how can they suddenly test positive?” 

The names of the players who have tested positive could not be confirmed. 

Indian badminton couple Saina Nehwal and Parupalli Kashyap have also been left confused less than 24 hours before the start of the Super 1000 tournament after the latter’s tests for COVID-19 came ‘inconclusive’. 

Saina too, is waiting for her results for her COVID-19 tests. 

“What kind of testing is this? 31 hours later still inconclusive and a re-test again god knows when ? matches start tomorrow!” Commonwealth Games gold medallist Parupalli wrote in a tweet, tagging the world governing body (BWF).

The London Olympics bronze medallist Saina complained she couldn’t practice for the tournament. 

“Ok I have to do this now! Matches are starting tomorrow at the All England and still no reports of the Covid test done 30hrs before. No practice, no gym … For 2 days now,” she tweeted.

The 2015 runners-up at All England, Saina had to go through a similar experience in Thailand in January when she had returned positive in a third COVID-19 test but was cleared to compete later after further investigation. 

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Sagar Biswas

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