BWF Thailand Open: Another blow for Thailand Open, World No.1 pair Gideon & Sukamuljo withdraw from event

BWF Thailand Open: Another blow for Thailand Open, World No.1 pair Gideon & Sukamuljo withdraw from event: World No.1 pair Marcus Fernaldi Gideon and Kevin Sanjaya Sukamuljo have withdrawn from the Asian Leg of the BWF World Tour after Sukamuljo tested positive for coronavirus.

According to the Badminton World Federation (BWF), Sukamuljo was tested on December 20 after showing symptoms of COVID-19. He reportedly had lost his sense of smell and taste and had mild flu. After the test returned positive, he was kept in isolation at home. Two more subsequent tests, the second of which was on December 31 were also positive. The rest of the team was not informed so as to not affect team morale in the build-up to the Asian Leg.

“Thank you for your prayers and support, I hope I can recover quickly and be able to train again as before. This is also a lesson for me to always be vigilant in the future,” the BWF website quoted Sukamuljo as saying.

Herry Iman Pierngadi, the men’s doubles head coach, said Sukamuljo wouldn’t have entered the tournaments even if the last test had returned negative.

“Even if he had tested negative, I wouldn’t have wanted him to compete at these three taxing tournaments. He wouldn’t have had enough time to prepare properly. Right now, his health is of utmost importance,” he said.

There was a withdrawal in women’s singles as local hope Nitchaon Jindapol was injured during training yesterday. Jindapol will now miss the upcoming tournaments in Thailand. She was drawn to face top seed Tai Tzu Ying in the first round of the YONEX Thailand Open next week.

Meanwhile, men’s singles third seed Anders Antonsen, who tested positive for COVID-19 earlier last month, has recovered and arrived in Bangkok with the rest of the Danish team