The Indian taekwondo squad have all but lost their opportunity to qualify for the 2021 Tokyo Olympics with Jordan imposing restrictions on Indian athletes for the Asian Qualifiers, in Amman. No Taekwondo player from India has ever qualified for the quadrennial event before.
Indian athletes are facing a torrid time in the build-up to the 2021 Tokyo Olympics, with most countries imposing bans on travel from the country. It has seen India miss out on the Archery World Cup, in Switzerland, and force the Indian shooting squad to train in Europe ahead of the Games.
The Indian taekwondo squad has been training at the Sports Authority of India (SAI) in Lucknow, for the Asian Qualifiers that is supposed to take place from May 19 to 23, in Amman, Jordan. But, as per recent reports, the Jordan federation has imposed a ban on Indian players owing to the situation in the country.
The host nation asked players to arrive in Jordan in transit from another country after serving quarantine for 14-days. The squad had to reach their by May 19, which would have allowed them the two-week cushion for the quarantine period. Incidentally, it will be the last qualifying tournament ahead of the 2021 Tokyo Olympics.
To qualify, Indians had to finish in the top-two of their weight categories in the Asian Qualifiers, but as things stand, there are unlikely to be a part of the event. Even though the players and organisations have requested the Sports Ministry to work out diplomatic solutions with Jordan, nothing has materialised yet.