Sport

King’s Cup postponed to next year

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Curacao celebrate winning the King's Cup last year at Chang Arena in Buri Ram.
Curacao celebrate winning the King’s Cup last year at Chang Arena in Buri Ram.

The 48th King’s Cup football tournament has been postponed to next year, the organising committee announced on Thursday.

The decision was mutually agreed by the organising committee and the Football Association of Thailand (FAT).

The popular King’s Cup competition has been deferred in view of the global novel coronavirus pandemic, which has claimed more than 400,000 lives so far.

A joint statement by the organising committee and the FAT observed that with the threat of a second wave of Covid-19 outbreak lingering, it was prudent to postpone the four-nation tournament to next year.

“The other reason for the postponement of the King’s Cup is that the revised schedules for domestic football tournaments are very tight after the hiatus induced by the coronavirus spread in the country,” said the organising committee.

“Moreover, the Covid-19 situation is still far from safe.”

Last year, the King’s Cup was staged in Buri Ram where Curacao lifted the coveted trophy after defeating Vietnam in the final.

However, the postponement of the King’s Cup will have no effect on other events in the country with Thai League 1 returning on Sept 12 as planned.

The Center for Covid-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) is expected to approve the fourth phase of easing the Covid-19 restrictions today, which would allow domestic football tournaments to resume but without any spectators at match venues.

The expected CCSA decision raised speculation of moving the Thai League 1 restart date forward, but FAT president Pol Gen Somyot Poompunmuang was quick to quash the rumour.

“The news that came out is unofficial,” said Somyot. “It will be good if the CCSA allows outdoor sports to be played behind closed doors, but we will have to study the protective measures stipulated by the health officials for the safety of everyone involved.

“We will inform the clubs about the official protocol but we will restart the leagues from Sept 12 because the teams need at least six weeks to get ready.

“The foreign players returning from abroad will have to be placed in a state quarantine for 14 days.”



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