Olympics: Asian wrestling qualifiers postponed over coronavirus threat

The Asian Olympic wrestling qualifiers, scheduled to be held next month in Kyrgyzstan, have been postponed indefinitely due to concerns over coronavirus.

The Chinese city of Xi’an was slated to play host to the tournament earlier but it was moved to Bishkek due to the outbreak of coronavirus in the country. (Representative Image)

The Chinese city of Xi’an was slated to play host to the tournament earlier but it was moved to Bishkek due to the outbreak of coronavirus in the country. (Representative Image)   -  Getty Images

The Asian Olympic wrestling qualifiers, scheduled to be held next month in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, have been postponed indefinitely due to concerns over the novel coronavirus.

The event was deferred after the Kyrgyzstan government came out with a directive to postpone all sporting events in the country till further notice in the wake of the epidemic, which has killed close to 3,000 people and infected nearly 80,000 globally.

There is no update on the rescheduled time and venue for the event which was slated from March 27 to 29.

The Kyrgyzstan government took the decision during an operational meeting.

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“At an operational meeting led by director of the State Agency Kanat Amankulov, it was decided to postpone a number of major international sports events planned in Kyrgyzstan to later dates,” the State Agency for Youth, Physical Culture and Sports of the Kyrgyz Republic said.

The Chinese city of Xi’an was slated to play host to the tournament earlier but it was moved to Bishkek due to the outbreak of coronavirus in the country.

A 14-member squad, including youngsters Jitender Kumar and Sonam Malik, was announced for the Asian qualifiers.

India has already booked a berth in four of the eight Olympic wrestling categories with Ravi Dahiya (57kg), Bajrang Punia (65kg), Deepak Punia (86kg) and Vinesh Phogat (53kg) making it to the top sporting event.

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