Thailand, Taiwan, China to skip Badminton Asia Team Championships 2022 due to COVID-19 fears
Owing to rising COVID-19 concerns, Thailand and Taiwan won't be participating in the BATC 2022. China will also be absent, making the road easier for India.
Owing to COVID-19 spreading fresh havoc, the upcoming Badminton Asia Team Championships 2022 scheduled to be held from February 15th to 20th at Shah Alam, Malaysia will see Thailand, Taiwan and China skipping the tournament owing to concerns regarding the safety of its players against the virus.
Although Badminton Asia and Malaysia remain keen on hosting the event in full force, it will be missing out on some exciting competition with Thailand and Taiwan not willing to send their players. The organisers had already mentioned earlier that China won't be taking part in the event because of the strict lockdown measures in their own country.
With Thailand, Taiwan, China out of the fray, the Badminton Asia Team Championships 2022, which will act as an automatic qualifier for the Thomas and Uber Cup Finals in May, there will only be 8 teams taking part in the event.
Hong Kong, India, Japan, South Korea, Indonesia, Singapore, Kazakhstan and hosts Malaysia remain the only teams who will be locking horns to fight for the spots at the Thomas and Uber Cup Finals that will take place in Thailand in May. The semi-finalists from the men's and the women's sides of the tournament will gain automatic qualification for the World team events in Bangkok.
All set to be hosted at the Setia City Convention centre, the Badminton Asia Team Championships 2022 will mark the first international sporting event to be held in the country since it shut off its borders in March 2020, following the first Movement Control Order (MCO).
The Indian squad headed for the Malaysia tournament has been kept young and fresh with Lakshya Sen, Kiran George, Malvika Bansod and Ashmita Chaliha leading the contingent. With Thailand, Taiwan and China out of the mix, it'll be slightly easier for the talented Indian team as they head south-east to earn spots for the Thomas and Uber Cup Finals.