India Open 2022 suffered a major setback which opens on Thursday with as many as seven Indian shuttlers, including reigning world silver medalist Kidambi Srikanth, quitting the tournament after testing positive for the virus. Meanwhile on the Opening Day PV Sindhu notched a comfortable win 21-10, 21-10 against Ira Sharma.
In the early hours of Thursday morning, BAI confirmed the names of the players who tested positive for COVID-19.
Apart from Srikanth, Ashwini Ponnappa, Ritika Rahul Thkar, Treesa Jolly, Mithun Manjunath, Simran Aman Singh, and Khushi Gupta have all withdrew from the premiere event.
India Open 2022 Opening Day – PV Sindhu Wins
The World Body in a statement said “A obligatory RT-PCR test done on Tuesday yielded a positive result for the athletes. Doubles partners deemed close contact of the seven players have also been withdrawn from the India Open tournament.
“The players will not be replaced in the main draw and their opponents will be given a walkover to the next round.” N Sikki Reddy, Dhruv Kapila, Gayatri Gopichand, Akshan Shetty and Kavya Gupta were also pulled out of the competition after being deemed closed contacts of the infected. They, however, didn’t test positive for the virus.
While Sikki partners Ashwini in women’s doubles, Dhruv plays mixed doubles with Sikki, Akshan forms the mixed doubles team with Simran, while Kavya is the women’s doubles partner of Khushi.
Initially, the BWF didn’t reveal the names of the seven players.
B Sai Praneeth, the 2019 global bronze medalist, as well as double specialists Manu Attri and Dhruv Rawat, had tested positive for the virus before leaving for the national capital and had to withdraw before the event began.
After the country’s doubles specialist Sean Vendy and coach Nathan Robertson tested positive for the illness, the whole England badminton contingent withdrew ahead of the Super 500 event.
The BAI is hosting the 2022 India Open, which will take place behind closed doors at the Indira Gandhi Stadium’s KD Jadhav Indoor Hall.
All of the players are tested every day at the hotel and outside the stadium, according to the COVID-19 guidelines.