COVID-19 means no handshakes at 2020 Jamaica International Badminton tourney

By March 04, 2020

With the COVID-19 virus a constant threat to the international community, the Jamaica Badminton Association is taking no chances when it hosts the 2020 Jamaica International Badminton Tournament set to run from March 4-8 at the National Indoor Sports Centre in Kingston.

Players from more than 20 countries are expected to be competing for US$10,000 in prize money over five categories.

JABA President Nicole Case revealed this week that the threat of the virus that has infected more than 90,000 people globally, killing more than 3000.

At Tuesday’s launch, Nicole Fahmi, an official at the Ministry of Health was invited to provide updates on the virus and offer advice to players and officials on how to protect themselves from contracting the virus. She was actively engaged.

COVID-19 is primarily spread through respiratory droplets, which means to become infected; people generally must be within six feet of someone who is contagious and come into contact with these droplets.

It may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching his or her own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.

Symptoms of COVID-19 appear within two to 14 days after exposure and include fever, cough, runny nose and difficulty breathing.

The precautions taken by the JABA has already prevented one player from arriving in Jamaica.

An Italian player who was supposed to be at the tournament was informed that should he arrive in Jamaica he would have been quarantined for 14 days and hence would not be able to compete. He has since decided to forego his trip to the Caribbean.

Italy's government announced Wednesday that all schools and universities in the country will be closed from March 5 to March 15, as the country now has more than 2,500 cases and 79 deaths linked to the coronavirus.

For those who have already arrived, the JABA will be enforcing a no-handshake rule.

“One of the measures that we will be implementing at the tournament is to avoid handshaking,” said Case.

“One of the normal protocols at the end of a match is that players would shake hands and they would also shake the hands of the umpire. We have agreed with the referee that will be foregone and use other non-contact methods of acknowledging the players.”

She said they would also ensure that they have enough hand sanitization solutions available for the players and officials.

“There is still contact with the shuttlecock so we want to keep the hands clean,” she said.


Leighton Levy

Leighton Levy is a journalist with 28 years’ experience covering crime, entertainment, and sports. He joined the staff at SportsMax.TV as a content editor two years ago and is enjoying the experience of developing sports content and new ideas. At he is pursuing his true passion - sports.

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