Athletics: Olympics-Athletics-Briton Rowden fears self-isolation will dent team mates confidence


(Reuters) – British 800 metres runner Daniel Rowden said news that six of his team mates had to self-isolate following contact with an individual who tested positive for COVID-19 had left him feeling anxious ahead of the Tokyo Olympics.

The British Olympic Association said on Sunday the athletes and two staff members had been identified as close contacts to a positive case on their flight to Japan.

The group are currently in their rooms at the team’s preparation camp in Yokohama but British media have reported they hoped to train later on Tuesday after returning negative tests.

“To be locked in a room and not be able to train takes away from your confidence, takes away from your preparation,” Rowden was quoted as saying by The Guardian.

“And then also there’s a bit of fear that the same thing could happen to us. Those athletes were on the flight the day before us, so there’s a little bit of trepidation that the same thing could happen to people on our flight as well.”

Sprinter Richard Kilty said it would be “heartbreaking” for an athlete to miss out on training or competition with the Games set to begin on Friday.

“There is always the worry that you could randomly be pinged for whatever reason, or came into contact with someone, and you don’t get a chance to train or compete,” Kilty said.

“If someone was to come and miss out on their individual event this close to the Games, it would be heartbreaking for anybody. I wouldn’t wish it on anyone.”

(Reporting by Shrivathsa Sridhar in Bengaluru; Editing by Peter Rutherford)

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