COVID-19: Indian table tennis player stuck in Malaga

Takeme Sarkar had travelled to Malaga to participate in the Spanish League, and was slated to return to India on March 24.

Takeme Sarkar will have to wait in Malaga at least until May 11.   -  G. Ramakrishna

India No. 14 and Railways table tennis player Takeme Sarkar is stranded in Spain because of the lockdown in Europe owing to the novel coronavirus outbreak. The player has issued a video and a statement informing about her situation on Wednesday. Takeme, who was a part of the Railways team that won the team title in the last Nationals held in Telengana, went to Spain to train and played some matches for a club called Hotel Museo Patria Chica, which participates in the Spanish League.

“I came here on February 25 and my club had arranged the return tickets on March 24. My flight got cancelled because of the lock down and now I can return only on May 11,” Takeme, who hails from the North Bengal town of Siliguri, said from her current location in Priego de Cordoba, which is a part of the Andalusia region in Spain.

“The club is taking great care of me and I hope this coronavirus pandemic gets over soon. I am in constant touch with my family and my coaches like Amit Dam and Tapan Chandra, who are giving me the courage to endure such a difficult situation,” Takeme, who became the women’s singles runner-up in the West Zone championship last season, said.

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A few days ago India No. 22 Raj Mondal landed in a bit of a trouble after returning from Spain, where he had been playing the league. Mondal found that he had become a target of some social media posts which claimed that he had tested positive of coronavirus and has been taken away by the police. The player, who has put himself in self-quarantine, said that that he had to approach the local police authorities to stop the fake news from spreading.

"First of all, I want you to know I am safe under home quarantine and I don't have any symptoms regarding the virus," Mondal wrote in his Facebook post warning those who "are trying to create panic in the society" by spreading false news about him.

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