India’s badminton ace Saina Nehwal and men’s player HS Prannoy have reportedly tested positive for coronavirus and have pulled out from Thailand Open that started in Bangkok on Tuesday (12 January).
The Indian duo will be quarantined in a hospital in the Thai capital for 10 days, in accordance with local rules. Saina’s husband and fellow player Parupalli Kashyap has been taken to hospital, but his results are awaited. He too has withdrawn from the competition, claim reports.
This was supposed to be the first competition for Saina in ten months since the All England event that was held last March.
Saina and Kashyap had tested positive last year too and had recovered only in December. Ranked 20th in the world, the London Olympics bronze-medallist was drawn against World No 4 Nozomi Okuhara in the blockbuster first-round clash before the entire Japanese contingent withdrew due to COVID-19 concerns. Consequently, she was due to meet Malaysia’s Kisona Selvaduray in the opening round.
World No 28 HS Prannoy was slated to meet Malaysia’s Lee Zii Jia in his first-round match, while Kashyap, ranked 24th, was pitted against Canada’s Jason Anthony Ho-Shue in his opening match.