The Badminton World Federation (BWF) on Friday rescheduled the BWF World Junior Championships 2020 to January next year due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The BWF World Junior Championships, initially scheduled to be held in Auckland in September this year, will take place from January 18 to January 24, 2021. The event will be preceded by the World Junior Mixed Team Championships, scheduled to be held from January 11 to January 16.
BWF, in a statement, said that only those athletes eligible for the originally scheduled championships are allowed to enter.
"The new time frame gives the BWF, Badminton New Zealand and tournament orgsers the best chance to stage a successful event for the large volume of junior players expected to travel to Auckland," the statement reads.
BWF Secretary General Thomas Lund said: "With all things considered, we believe the move is the best option in order to avoid any possible complexities linked to travel and other lingering COVID-19-related impacts. We look forward to working with Badminton New Zealand to put on a great show in Auckland."
Badminton New Zealand Chief Executive Joe Hitchcock is still confident that players and supporters will have an unforgettable experience when the event eventually takes place.
"At the moment, the uncertainty of the global situation is challenging but we will work closely with the BWF and our event partners on plans for a rescheduled event. And we fully understand that we are guided by New Zealand Government regulations and international border control measures," Hitchcock said.
"When the time is right, we will welcome the world's best young badminton talent to Auckland because we know that teams travelling to New Zealand will have the experience of a lifetime, and the event with leave a lasting positive legacy," he added.
( With inputs from ANI )