Austrian pair out of worlds over security: report
Two Austrian doubles players joined the England squad in pulling out of the world badminton championships in Hyderabad, India, for security reasons, local media said on Thursday.other Updated: Aug 13, 2009 15:04 IST
Two Austrian doubles players joined the England squad in pulling out of the world badminton championships in Hyderabad, India, for security reasons, local media said on Thursday.
Juergen Koch and Peter Zauner flew home ahead of their second round match against the sixth-seeded Danish pair of Mathias Boe and Carsten Mogensen.
“They did not get in touch with us to tell us why they were leaving,” an unnamed official from the Badminton World Federation (BWF) was quoted as saying in Indian newspapers.
“The Austrian team management said they had left Hyderabad for security reasons, but a singles player, Michael Lahnsteiner, and a coach stayed back."
No BWF spokesperson was available to give an official version of the reported pull-out.
England’s squad withdrew from the championships on Monday following media reports of a militant threat to the event, although the Indian government denied it had issued any warning.
On returning to England, squad members said they were not satisfied with the level of security for the championships.
The perceived risk of foreign sports stars being targeted in South Asia has increased dramatically since gunmen attacked the Sri Lanka cricket team in Lahore, Pakistan, in March.
Six policemen and two civilians were killed and seven Sri Lankan squad members were injured in the assault on the team as they travelled to a Test match.
Deadly militant attacks in Mumbai last November, in which 166 people were killed, have also added to nervousness about teams travelling to India.
India is due to host the Commonwealth Games in New Delhi in October next year.