Axelsen tests positive for Covid-19

COPENHAGEN: Badminton world No. 2 Viktor Axelsen (pix) was forced to withdraw from Sunday’s final of the European Championship in Kiev after testing positive for Covid-19.

Axelsen was to face fellow Dane Anders Antonsen, who claimed his first European title with a walkover.

“Top seed and defending champion Viktor Axelsen returned a second positive test for Covid-19, ruling him out of contesting the men’s singles final of the 2021 European Championships today,” Badminton Denmark announced on Sunday.

It said the 27-year-old Axelsen returned a first positive test after beating Finn Kalle Koljonen in the semifinals on Saturday and must isolate in Kiev.

“He will remain in hotel room quarantine for the next 13 days””

Axelsen, a singles bronze medallist at the Rio Olympics, said he was in good health.

“There is no doubt that there is nothing I would rather do than stand in the final today against Anders,” the statement quoted Axelsen as saying.

“I am also really sorry that it will take another two weeks before I can come home and see my family again,” he added.

“These are the conditions we have to play under in this time where isolation and quarantine is a risk that we know is present when we compete. I still feel no symptoms of illness and am otherwise in good spirits.” – AFP