All Badminton World Federation tournaments suspended

KUALA LUMPUR (AFP) – The Badminton World Federation (BWF) is to suspend all tournaments from tomorrow until April 12 due to the coronavirus epidemic.

“The suspension of the circuit will come into effect following the completion of the Yonex All England Open in Birmingham on Sunday,” it said in a statement.

The tournaments affected include the Swiss Open, India Open, Orleans Masters, Malaysia Open, and Singapore Open.

The decision comes after top shuttlers hit out at the world body, accusing it of not taking the epidemic seriously and putting them in danger by going ahead with international tournaments.

The coronavirus outbreak, declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization (WHO) on Wednesday, has led to more than 5,000 deaths globally.

Dozens of major sporting events have been cancelled over the epidemic, from Formula One motor racing to England’s Premier League and the Masters golf major.

BWF also warned that the cancellations could hurt Olympic qualifying, which closes on April 30.