Seven players, including top seed Srikanth, withdraw from Yonex India Open after testing positive for Covid

Kidambi Srikanth

Seven players, including top seed Srikanth, withdraw from Yonex India Open after testing positive for Covid

Sixth seed Sameer Verma also out after suffering calf strain

New Delhi, January 13, 2022

The ongoing Yonex-Sunrise India Open Badminton tournament was thrown into turmoil on Thursday morning when it was confirmed that eight players have withdrawn from the competition, with seven, including top seed K. Srikanth, testing positive for Covid-19 and sixth seed Sameer Verma suffering a calf strain.

Apart from Srikanth, others who have tested positive are Mithun Manjunath, doubles specialist Ashwini Poonappa, Treesa Jolly, Ritika Rahul Thaker, Simran Aman Singhi and Khushi Gupta.

“The players returned a positive result to a mandatory RT-PCR test conducted on Tuesday. Doubles partners deemed close contact of the seven players have also been withdrawn from the tournament," Badminton World Federation (BWF) said in a statement.

“The players will not be replaced in the main draw and their opponents will be given a walkover to the next round," it said.

Testing protocols have been implemented in accordance with BWF and Badminton Association of India (BAI) guidelines to ensure the health and safety of all participants.

Mithun Manjunath had beaten France’s Arnaud Merkle in three games in his opening round and was scheduled to play H S Prannoy in the next round.

There was another piece of bad news for the organisers with sixth seed Sameer Verma, who was to face Canada’s Brian Yang in his second round fixture, pulling out of the competition after suffering a calf strain.

Before the start of the tournament, Olympian B. Sai Praneeth and double specialists Manu Attri and Dhruv Rawat had tested positive for the virus and had to pull out of the competition

The entire England badminton squad had opted out of the Indian Open after their doubles specialist Sean Vendy and coach Nathan Robertson tested positive for the virus.

Round two of the tournament commences today.

NNN

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