Thailand welcomes players into Bangkok badminton bubble

Thailand’s world No. 5 Ratchanok Intanon. © BWF
Thailand’s world No. 5 Ratchanok Intanon. © BWF

Bangkok, Thailand, January 6, 2021: Thailand’s leading badminton player, Ratchanok Intanon, has welcomed her fellow players to the Thai capital for the Asian leg of the world tour.

The 25-year-old world No. 5 in women’s singles featured in a welcome message on behalf of the Badminton World Federation ahead of three major events in the so-called Bangkok badminton bubble in the next three weeks.

“I welcome my fellow players from around the world to come to play in Thailand,” she said.

“I believe that the Covid-19 safety measures are reliable and the situation is under control, even though the cases are high.

“Just take good care of yourself and come to do what you have been longing for – to take part in such a big tournament.”

The BWF reports that the Asian leg of the HSBC BWF World Tour received a boost on Wednesday with all 824 participants in the Green Zone quarantine bubble testing negative for Covid-19. This number included 216 players in 22 teams.

The Green Zone consists of players and their entourage and all stakeholders who come into direct contact with them such as umpires, line judges, personnel from BWF, Badminton Association of Thailand, medical staff and TV production crew.

All international Green Zone participants were required to submit a negative test result in their own country before departure to Bangkok and were then tested again in Bangkok upon entry into hotel quarantine.

The three events on the Asian leg are the Yonex Thailand Open from January 12-17, Toyota Thailand Open from January 19-24 and the HSBC BWF World Tour Finals from January 27-31.

The men’s event will be without world champion Kento Momota, whose positive test before departure in Tokyo forced the withdrawal of the entire Japanese team. China also will not take part in Bangkok.