The final Olympic Qualifier, which will take place from April 1 – 5 in Taichung, Taiwan, may be bothered by health issues because of the coronavirus epidemic. It may lead to a ban of the People’s Republic of China.
Taiwan has denied access to people from China and to people who visited China recently. Since China is one of the countries that should participate in the tournament, there is a big chance the team will be replaced by another country.
The WBSC will make a decision in the coming days as it will look to several countries to replace China. According to CBS News, the virus may lead to a complete ban of Chinese athletes for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics if no cure will be found. In Taiwan, twenty persons are infected and one person passed away due to the virus. Another possibility would be to move the qualifier to another country but nothing has been decided on this by the WBSC yet.
Early February, the WBSC released a statement in which it declared it was monitoring the situation closely and it will keep in close contact with all relevant organizations.
Next to Taiwan, Australia, the Netherlands and China would participate. The last two countries will come from the Qualifier of the Americas.
More news about the possible ban of China or an alternative location of the final Olympic Qualifier will follow in the coming days.