Badminton : New BWF calendar in complete disarray, 3 tournaments cancelled

The Badminton World Federation (BWF) has confirmed the cancellation of three World Tour events that will not be re-arranged this season.

A re-jigged calendar was released by the world governing body last month after a number of tournaments were postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Further changes have now been announced with the Australian Open, Korea Masters and Hyderabad Open all removed from the schedule.

“The fast-changing landscape of the COVID-19 situation has meant that BWF and its member association hosts have maintained frequent communication to determine the feasibility of staging each tournament on a case-by-case scenario, based on the latest information from local authorities,” the BWF said.

The Australian Open, a Super 300 tournament, was due to take place this week in Sydney, between June 2 and 7.

It had previously been suspended but has now been cancelled entirely after Badminton Australia could not find suitable replacement dates, with a later slot in 2020 deemed unfeasible.

The Korea Masters, another Super 300 event scheduled for Gwangju between November 24 and 29, has been axed as the city will now host the Super 500 Korea Open from September 8 to 13.

India’s Hyderabad Open, a Super 100 event scheduled for August 11 to 16, has been called off after agreement from the Badminton Association of India.

“Circumstances have and will continue to change in certain countries and territories and therefore BWF may be required to make further updates to the status of tournaments as and when necessary,” said BWF secretary general Thomas Lund.

“These changes announced today are necessary but do not directly impact the new BWF tournament calendar 2020, which was created to allow for changes as part of our framework for badminton’s potential return.

“I would like to thank all member association hosts for their patience, cooperation and consultation in this process.

“Health, safety and movement restrictions are now quite varied across the globe as certain countries and territories slowly return to a new normal.

“We will continue to adjust to these changes to ensure any badminton activity 100 per cent complies to the rules and regulations of the World Health Organization, local health authorities and international and domestic travel restrictions.

“The revamped calendar is the main planning tool for hosts to organise tournaments and players to compete again.

“We need the support and perseverance of all to get our ecosystem back to normal.”

Two World Tour events in 2020 remain suspended – the German Open and Swiss Open – while the European Championships have also not been re-arranged.

An announcement on these events will be “made in due course”.

The new-look 2020 World Tour calendar is due to resume with the Lingshui China Masters, a Super 100 event, between August 25 and 30.

Changzhou is scheduled to host the first major competition, the Super 1000 China Open, between September 15 and 20.

The season-ending World Tour Finals in Guangzhou, originally scheduled for December 11 to 15 in the Chinese city, are now scheduled from December 16 to 20.