India badminton ace Saina Nehwal and husband Parupalli Kashyap left for Thailand to participate in the Yonex Thailand Open starting on January 12.
Kashyap, Saina, H S Prannoy, Sameer Verma, Dhruv Kapila, Manu Attri were among others who left for Bangkok from Hyderabad via Dubai on Saturday.
‘First tournament after a long time... looking forward to the tournament... Thailand open 2021 …#thailandopen2021 #covidtraveldairies #staysafe #badmintontournament,’ Kashyap captioned a picture taken with wife Saina.
Olympic silver medallist P V Sindhu is set to fly out of London on Sunday -- she will reach Bangkok via Doha.
Among others travelling to Thailand are B Sai Praneeth and Kidambi Srikanth.
The team also consists of Olympic-bound men's pair of Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty, besides doubles exponents Ashwini Ponappa and N Sikki Reddy.
"After a long wait we get back on court soon at Thailand Open!!! excited much," a picture of the squad, posted by Satwiksairaj on his Instagram handle read.
While Srikanth had participated in the Denmark Super 750 in October, for the rest of the squad it will be first event in nearly 10 months, after most tournaments last year were called off due to the pandemic. The Denmark Open and the SaarLorLux Super 100 were the only other event to be held last year.
Thailand is due to host back-to-back BWF World Tour Super 1000 events – the Toyota Thailand Open (January 19-24) will soon follow the Yonex Thailand Open.
Meanwhile, young shuttler Lakshya Sen has pulled out of the two events in Thailand due to a back strain that he sustained during training.
"Unfortunately, Lakshya will not be able to play the two events in Thailand due to a slight back strain that he suffered during training," PPBA Director and former India coach Vimal Kumar told PTI.
"The players will have to reach Bangkok by January 4 and then stay in quarantine for a week to participate in the two events, so he won't be able to play this time," said Vimal.
The 19-year-old Lakshya had last participated in the Denmark Open in October before he was forced to withdraw from SaarLorLux Open, where he was the defending champion, after his father and coach DK Sen had tested positive for the COVID-19 after reaching Germany.