Coach Chafidz Yusuf, center, briefs two female players during Uber Cup simulation games in Jakarta on Sept. 10, 2020. (Photo courtesy of PBSI)

Indonesia Withdraws from Thomas-Uber Championships


SEPTEMBER 12, 2020

Jakarta. Indonesia followed the step of several other countries to withdraw from world team badminton championship Thomas Cup and Uber Cup which have been scheduled to run in Aarhus, Denmark, next month.

The Indonesian Badminton Association, or PBSI, said on Saturday the main reason behind the withdrawal is concern among Indonesian shuttlers over the current Covid-19 pandemic.

The athletes have raised concern about the risk of being exposed to Covid-19 during the trip, at transit areas and at match venues, PBSI Secretary General Achmad Budiharto said.

Achmad added Indonesian players also pointed to a lack of insurance scheme from the Badminton World Federation under a scenario if any of the team members catches the virus during the tournament.

"The Indonesian team confirms a decision to withdraw from the 2020 Thomas Cup and Uber Cup tournament … after a discussion with athletes and officials,” Achmad said.

"At the beginning, everyone was very excited about the tournament and confident of their chance, but as time went by they learned about worsening situation due to unresolved Covid-19 pandemic in Indonesia or other countries and they hesitated to participate," he added.

The decision came after weeks of preparations by PBSI involving dozens of male and female players in tournament drill.

Australia, Taiwan, Thailand and South Korea have earlier announced their withdrawal.

The Thomas Cup for men’s team and the Uber Cup for women are a biennial event involving state members of the BWF. Before 1982, the tournament was held every three years.

Indonesia is the most successful Thomas Cup team with 13 trophies since the tournament was held in 1948-49. However, it has been 18 years since Indonesia last emerged victorious. 

Only five countries, including also China, Malaysia, Japan and Denmark, have ever won the Thomas Cup.

The Indonesian women’s team has won the Uber Cup three times, most recently in 1996.