It’s fair to say a rising pandemic, postponed badminton tournaments and a sweeping wave of cancelled flights due to a mutant virus have significantly changed how we celebrate festivals this year.
Christmas, a day you dream of being with the family, watching the surprise on your uncle’s face as he unwraps the same gift for the fifth year or sitting down for a lovely meal, will for 2020, differ a lot.
Here’s how some of our stars across the globe will celebrate Yuletide after a somewhat chaotic year.
Three-time world champion and Rio 2016 Olympic gold medallist Carolina Marin is adhering to regulations in Spain, where indoor gatherings are limited to six persons.
“I’ll be celebrating in Madrid with my mum and a small portion of my family. I’m not sure what my mum is cooking, so maybe that will be a nice surprise today. I’m really looking forward to it.”
Men’s doubles star, Kim Astrup from Denmark, has altered his plans this Christmas too.
“Normally we’d be with all the family, but this year me and my lovely dad will spend it together. We used to walk around the Christmas tree and sing carols before opening presents, but due to the Coronavirus, that’s a little different this year.”
SaarLorLux Open 2020 winner Kirsty Gilmour, who will miss the Asian leg with a foot injury, still intends to celebrate her favourite time of the year because “everyone can get involved”.
“I’m happy to be having a quiet Christmas. I’m visiting my mum for Christmas dinner under strict guidelines (in Scotland). Normally I’d be visiting all the family between Glasgow and Edinburgh.
“I have a two-year-old niece who is very excited for Santa so that’s going to be fun!”
A little further south, in England, Marcus Ellis and Lauren Smith have had “the Grinch steal their Christmas”. Large parts of England have entered another lockdown, meaning the duo will spend Christmas indoors after a ‘stay at home’ order was issued over the festive period.
“I was supposed to be going to my family’s. I have an 11-year-old brother and for him, Christmas is a magical time.” – Smith
“It will be me, Lauren and our dog Luna this year. Lauren will make the traditional Christmas dinner, with all the trimmings and of course Yorkshire puddings.” – Ellis
Some 47,000 miles away in India, former world No.1 Kidambi Srikanth plans to hit up the Gopichand Badminton Academy on Christmas day.
“I don’t really celebrate Christmas in a big way. We’re limited here in where we can go so I’ll be training.”
BWF wishes everyone a safe and Merry Christmas.