With a little over 100 days to go for Tokyo Olympic Games, a leading 400 metres low hurdler and a jumper training at Patiala’s National Institute of Sports are among five track and field athletes with potential of making it to the Olympics, to have tested positive for Covid-19.
“All five athletes are in isolation and will undergo 14 days quarantine. They are fine and have no symptoms of coronavirus but their RT-PCR Covid-19 report was positive on Tuesday. The athletes will be out of action for next two weeks,” a national level coach told IANS on condition of anonymity.
A Tamil Nadu athlete who had finished second in his event in the last month’s 24th National Federation Cup Athletics Championships is one of the prominent athletes who has tested positive.
The other athlete to test positive is from Kerala. He had finished second in his event at the Federation Cup in March in Patiala.
As a precautionary measure, the Sports Authority of India (SAI) had conducted Covid-19 RT-PCR tests both in Patiala and for the National Centre of Excellence in Bengaluru. Of the 313 tests done in Patiala, 26 were positive while 428 tests were conducted in Bengaluru, and four returned positive.
“Keeping the safety of the Olympic-bound athletes, coaches and support staff in mind, the SAI conducted Covid-19 RT-PCR tests. The reports received indicates that all Olympic bound athletes in Patiala and Bengaluru are negative,” SAI said in a statement on Wednesday.