The Badminton World Federation (BWF) confirmed the World Tour Finals (WTF) has been relocated to Bangkok, Thailand from its initial location in Guangzhou, China, and will take place from December 7-11.
“The change is due to the stadium availability and a consequence of the change in location.
"The BWF in consultation with the Chinese Badminton Association agreed to relocate the WTF due to the various challenges brought by the pandemic,” said the world body in a statement.
The change of venue comes as the Chinese province hit 769 new daily cases on Nov 11, the highest this year.
The participating shuttlers and officials were already bound to strict protocols if the tournament went ahead in Guangzhou, as they had to undergo three mandatory PCR tests in Bangkok before flying over.
The shift to Bangkok will be logistically more convenient for the Malaysian shuttlers, who are only a short flight away from Kuala Lumpur.
In the local context, Lee Zii Jia is the biggest name who is trying to make the WTF cut as he competes at the Australian Open this week.
Lee sits ninth on the WTF rankings, and will need a good outing to oust China’s Lu Guang Zu who occupies the final spot.
The final list of shuttlers who have qualified to the WTF will be announced on November 22 following the conclusion of the Australian Open.