Tokyo 2020 - Olympic organisers confirm two athletes have tested positive for Covid-19 just five days before Games
Tokyo 2020 organisers have confirmed two athletes have tested positive for Covid-19 at the Olympic village. The duo come from the same country and are the first athletes to contract the virus while staying inside the Olympic village. With just five days to go before the start of the Games, organisers have been scrambling to contain potential outbreaks at Tokyo 2020.
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On Sunday, South Africa's football team confirmed the positive athlete tests had come from within their camp, with Thabiso Monyane and Kamohelo Mahlatsi and video analyst Mario Masha also contracting the virus.
“We have three positive cases of COVID-19 in the camp here, two players and an official,” team manager Mxolisi Sibam said in a media release from the South African Football Association on Sunday.
There is daily screening, Masha and Monyane reported high temperatures and positive saliva tests, and were then taken to do the nasal test and they unfortunately tested positive for COVID-19. Mahlatsi is the latest player to go through the same process.
Tokyo 2020 spokesperson Masa Takaya said the three cases within the village were "were from the same country and sport" and the infected were "isolated in their rooms and Tokyo 2020 is delivering meals to them".
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In total ten new cases connected to the Olympics were announced on Sunday, with media, contractors and Games personnel returning positive tests.
Another 15 new cases were reported on Saturday, with organisers continuing to insist they can hold a “safe and secure” event.
"Athletes who are coming to Japan are probably very worried. I understand that,” Games boss Seiko Hashimoto said.
"We are doing everything to prevent any Covid outbreaks. If we end up with an outbreak we will make sure we have a plan in place to respond."
Australia’s entire athletics team were forced to isolate on Saturday after a Covid-19 scare in their group.
An inconclusive test sparked a stern reaction from the Australian team, who were all quarantined to their room at their pre-Games training camp in Cairns.
“The subsequent inconclusive test on entering the athletics camp triggered two further, more extensive tests to confirm the staff member’s negative status,” Australian Olympic team chef de mission Ian Chesterman said.
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“Athletics Australia has been working closely with Queensland Health and the staff member has been placed in quarantine, pending a final confirmation of their negative status expected later today.”
With 11,000 athletes expected at the Olympic village, organisers insist the Games can be held safely and not be a super spreader event.
Tokyo is currently under a state of emergency and the Japanese public have failed in attempts to get the Olympics cancelled amid soaring Covid-19 cases.