A 19-member team of 15 athletes and four coaches had left India for the Olympic qualifier competition.

Two Judokas who were set to compete at the ongoing Asia Oceania Judo Championships, have tested positive on their second test after arriving at Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. They don’t have any major symptoms but have been quarantined to a safe facility. Following the positive reports, the Indian team has pulled out of the competition.

A 19-member team of 15 athletes and four coaches had left India for the Olympic qualifier competition. The judokas underwent four rounds of testing between March 30 and April 5 – two before leaving and one after landing in Bishkek and one a day before the competition. It was during the 4th test before the competition that the two were found Covid positive.

The players are safe in a hotel with their daily requirements being looked after by the money allocated to them as daily allowance for the competition. Meanwhile, the sports ministry is in consultation with the Ministry of External Affairs to bring the players back safe.

Earlier, precautionary Covid tests were conducted at the National Centre of Excellence, Bhopal, on April 3 (Saturday) and on April 6 (Tuesday). In the two tests conducted, a total of 36 people tested positive for Covid, out of whom 24 are athletes and the other 12 are staff of NCOE. However, none of the athletes who tested positive are Olympic-bound. Some of the athletes who tested positive had returned from competitions of Wushu and Judo.

As a part of SAI’s utmost effort to ensure containment of the spread of the virus. The athletes who tested positive were shifted to hospitals as a precautionary measure. None of the athletes is in a dangerous situation. In view of the growing COVID-10 cases across the country, the Sports Authority of India had also issued a circular to all NCOEs to follow the existing SOP more stringently with stress on conducting regular precautionary tests for athletes.

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