The Badminton World Federation (BWF) announced the updated qualifying regulations for the Olympic and the Paralympic Games to be held in Tokyo next year.
The priority was to ensure a fair solution to the disrupted qualification system to qualify players for the postponed Games. Both the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and International Paralympic Committee (IPC) have approved the amendments.
For the Olympics, all ranking points earned at tournaments completed during the original Olympic qualification period will be maintained under the Race to Tokyo ranking list. An extended Olympic qualification period will be introduced from week 1 to 17 in 2021 and includes the select number of tournaments that were postponed, cancelled or suspended due to COVID-19.
These eligible tournaments within the new qualifying period must be completed by week 17 in 2021.
The tournaments rescheduled for the end of 2020, outlined in the revamped BWF tournament calendar 2020 released last week, will not count towards qualification. Only the 2021 editions of each tournament.
Such eligible tournaments within this new qualifying period should preferably take place in the same corresponding week from 2020 to 2021. If this is not possible, BWF will allow sanctioning on another date within week 1-17 in 2021 subject to approval.
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“It has been a thorough process with the close and valuable consultation of the Athletes’ Commission to consider how best to make adjustments to the Olympics and Paralympic qualification system,” said Thomas Lund, the BWF Secretary General.
“Although we aim to resume international tournaments towards the end of 2020, we have chosen to resume the Olympic and Paralympic qualification process only in 2021 to ensure that travel restrictions and other related impacts of COVID-19 are limited,” he added.
And for the Paralympics, only one tournament within the original Paralympic qualification period was cancelled due to the coronavirus outbreak – the Spanish Para Badminton International 2020.
It has now been included in the adjusted qualification system within a period from January 1 to March 28, 2021.
All ranking points earned at tournaments completed during the original Paralympic qualification period will be maintained under the Race to Tokyo Paralympic Ranking list. A date for the Spanish Para Badminton International will be announced in due process.
A revised BWF Tournament Calendar 2021 with the actual dates for these eligible tournaments will be revealed later.