HONG KONG: Badminton’s world body cancelled a series of tournaments in Asia Thursday in its latest calendar reshuffle, but said it hoped to finish the coronavirus-hit season with three major events in the region. 

The Badminton World Federation said the Thomas and Uber Cup, the year’s highlight after the Olympics were postponed, would retain its October 3-11 spot in Aarhus, Denmark, followed by two further events in Odense.

It will then attempt to round off the season with two Super 1000 tournaments and the World Tour Finals in consecutive weeks from November 10 in Asian locations that are yet to be announced.

Existing tournaments in New Zealand, China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand are chief among those cancelled as the BWF grapples to rescue its season.

Badminton — like other international sports — has been hard-hit by pandemic-enforced travel restrictions, forcing regular changes to its calendar since the world tour was suspended in March.

“Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, it was not possible to implement the revised international tournament calendar,” said BWF secretary-general Thomas Lund.

“Managing travel logistics between different territories where different entry and safety restrictions apply has been the biggest challenge.”

A two-week buffer between the Denmark and Asian tournaments will allow time for players and officials to quarantine, the BWF said. – AFP