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Yonex-India Open suffers a jolt as seven players including top seed Srikanth tested positive for Covid

Harpal Singh Bedi

New Delhi,13 January: The ongoing Yonex-Sunrise India Open Badminton tournament suffered a big jolt on Thursday morning when it was confirmed that seven players including top seed and title contender K.Srikanth and women double’s player Ashwini Ponnappa have tested positive for Covid-19 and all have withdrawn from the competition.

 

Apart from Srikanth and Poonappa,others who have tested positive are Mithun Manjunath, 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 Doubles  partners deemed close contact of the seven players have also been withdrawn from the tournament” Badminton World Federation (BWF) said in a statement.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.”

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 schedule to play HS Prannoy in next round

 

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

 

The entire England badminton squad had opted out of the Indian Open after their doubles specialists Sean Vendy and Coach Nathan Robertson tested positive.

 

Round two of the tournament commences today.

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