KUALA LUMPUR: The postponement of the Thomas-Uber Cup Finals came as a pleasant news to Malaysia’s coaching director Wong Choong Hann.
The world’s premier team events were scheduled to be held in Aarhus, Denmark, from May 16-24 but the Badminton World Federation (BWF) confirmed on Friday that they had moved the dates to Aug 15-23 at the same venue.
The tournament was the latest event to be postponed by the world body as measures taken to curb the spread of Covid-19.
With Denmark still under lockdown, BWF secretary general Thomas Lund said: “All relevant health, safety and logistical risks have been considered by BWF, Badminton Denmark, tournament organisers, Sport Event Denmark, and the local Aarhus government in reaching this decision.
“The health, safety and wellbeing of all athletes, their entourage, officials and the greater badminton community is the top priority.
“Heightened travel and quarantine restrictions and the subsequent extreme logistical complications this has caused has also contributed to the postponement.
“While we look forward to staging this tournament at a later date, our thoughts are first and foremost with everyone affected by this pandemic around the world.
Choong Hann said the postponement would give the shuttlers time to be better prepared as the Malaysian Government has imposed the movement control order, which has prevented all the shuttlers from training together at the Academy Badminton Malaysia (ABM).
“We can breathe easy now, ” said Choong Hann.
“I’m happy to see the commitment from the BWF as they have set a new date for it. It’s the only tournament where a new date has been confirmed. We are unsure of the status of all other tournaments that have been postponed before this.
“The Thomas-Uber Cup are important for us as it brings the nation together. With the Thomas Cup pushed forward by three months, players do have something to look forward too when the chaos caused by Covid-19 is over.”
On the current situation of the players, Choong Hann said all was good.
“The players who returned from All-England have passed their screening tests for Covid-19, so that’s a big relief. We are still observing self-quarantine and so far, all our players are in good morale.
“We’ll lose some time for sure with all the restrictions but I’m glad that we’ll have time to catch up. For now, the well-being of shuttlers is our priority.”
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