Kuala Lumpur: On Monday night, India’s capital New Delhi, where the 2021 India Open will be held, had announced a six-day lockdown after a record spike in COVID-19 cases and the city was facing a critical shortage of medical oxygen supplies and hospital beds.
New Delhi reported its highest single-day spike so far on Sunday with a total of 24,462 cases.
Although the Badminton Association of India (BAI) had previously confirmed that the tournament will be held in a bubble system with strict COVID-19 safety protocols, and without spectators and media, many big names had decided to pull out from the tournament. Some of the world’s top players such as the Rio Olympic women’s singles gold medalist Carolina Marin of Spain, the 2013 women’s singles World Champion Ratchanok Intanon of Thailand, World No. 3 and World No. 12 men’s singles players Anders Antonsen and Rasmus Gemke of Denmark, and World No. 7 mixed doubles players Chan Peng Soon/Goh Liu Ying, have withdrawn from the tournament due to the COVID-19 situation in India.
The Badminton World Federation (BWF) released the statement below on Monday evening citing the 2021 India Open has been postponed and no new date has been announced.
“Tournament organisers Badminton Association of India (BAI) have postponed the YONEX-SUNRISE India Open 2021 scheduled for 11-16 May 2021.
The decision was made in consultation and collaboration with local health authorities in Delhi and the Badminton World Federation.
All attempts were made by organisers to conduct a safe tournament environment for all participants, but the recent spike in COVID-19 cases and gravity of the situation in Delhi left BAI no choice but to postpone the tournament.
The YONEX-SUNRISE India Open is a Super 500 tournament on the HSBC BWF World Tour.”
With the postponement of the India Open, there are only two qualification events left, including the Malaysia Open (May 25 – May 30)and the Singapore Open (June 1 to June 6).