Tokyo Olympics: 70 days to go, 10 Olympic-bound Indian athletes who have tested positive for Covid-19- The Coronavirus has adversely affected every aspect of life in the last two years and sports is no different. First, the events started getting cancelled or postponed, world’s biggest sporting event Olympics got postponed by a year. Then we started witnessing games in empty stadiums in a biosecure bubble. But even after all these precautions, sporting stars across the globe too were not spared of the dreaded disease. And the same is the story in India.
India is currently fighting with the deadly second wave of COVID-19. And as the Tokyo Olympics is just 70 days away, we at InsideSport will take you through the list of 10 Olympic-bound Indian athletes who have tested positive for Covid-19.
Manpreet Singh – Indian Hockey team captain
The captain of the Indian hockey team Manpreet Singh and five more members of the squad were tested positive last year. This was the first high-profile cases from the Indian sporting world. After enjoying the break Manpreet Singh, Krishan Pathak, Jaskaran Singh, Surender Kumar and Varun Kumar were tested positive in Bengaluru. All six hockey players soon recovered and were back on the pitch, regaining full fitness ahead of the Olympic year.
Vinesh Phogat – Wrestling
India’s top woman wrestler Vinesh Phogat was tested positive for COVID-19 on August 28, 2020. However, the wrestler was asymptomatic.
Selected for this year’s Khel Ratna award, the Asian and Commonwealth Games gold-medallist had been training at her village in Sonepat with coach Om Prakash. The Indian wrestler, who was conferred the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna, had to miss the virtual ceremony after testing positive for the novel coronavirus a day before the event. Vinesh was one of the first wrestlers to raise concerns about health safety when the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) planned to resume the national camp in Lucknow.
Wrestlers who were tested positive
Rahi Sarnobat – Shooting
Rahi Sarnobat was Tested positive for COVID-19 in the month of February this year. The Indian shooter competed at the ISSF World Cup in New Delhi in March and later was diagnosed with the novel coronavirus, forcing her to halt their Olympic preparations.
Deepak Kumar – Shooting
Sergeant Deepak Kumar, who won the bronze medal at the 2018 ISSF World Cup in Guadalajara in the 10-metre air rifle mixed team event with Mehuli Ghosh, was also tested positive for COVID-19 in February this year. He has qualified to represent India at the 2020 Summer Olympics.
Saurabh Chaudhary – Shooting
Saurabh Chaudhary, who won the gold medal at the 2018 Asian Games in 10 m Air Pistol and was the youngest Indian gold medalist at the Asian Games, was also tested positive for COVID-19 this year. The shooter has recovered from his illness and will be looking forward to the ISSF World Cup in Baku, Azerbaijan in June.
Ashish Kumar – Boxer
Ashish Kumar who won a silver medal at the 2019 Asian Championships and reached the semifinals of the 2020 Asia & Oceania Boxing Olympic Qualification Tournament in Amman to qualify for the 2020 Summer Olympics, was also tested positive this year. Kumar contracted the virus on the eve of the Boxam International final in Spain in March.
Simranjit Kaur – Boxer
Simrajit Kaur, who will represent India in the 64kg category, has had her bout with the COVID-19. The 25-year-old was diagnosed with COVID-19 in April during their camp at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in New Delhi. This cut short the Olympic boxing camp for women.
Lovlina Borgohain – Boxer
Lovlina Borgohain, who hails from the Golaghat district of Assam, returned a positive report for an RT-PCR test in October ahead of her tour of Europe. She has recovered and has since returned to action. Boxer is the sixth person from Assam to receive Arjuna Award.
Priyanka Goswami – Athletics
Tokyo 2020-bound race walker Priyanka Goswami was tested positive for the virus. Priyanka has been at her training base, the SAI South Centre in Bengaluru. Priyanka is five track-and-field athletes, including Tokyo Olympics-bound 20km race walker.
Jinson Johnson, who is also at the SAI Centre, too tested positive.
KT Irfan – Athletics
Olympics-bound race walker K.T. Irfan was among the five elite track-and-field athletes to test positive for COVID-19 at the Sports Authority of India’s Centre of Excellence in Bengaluru. The 31-year-old Irfan had qualified for the Tokyo Olympics in early 2019 after finishing fourth in the 20 km event at the Asian Race Walking Championships in Nomi in Japan.
Parupalli Kashyap- Badminton
Many Badminton players also tested positive in the second COVID-19 wave in India. Parupalli Kashyap was one of the biggest names in the list.
With Parupalli, HS Prannoy, RMV Gurusai Dutt and Pranaav Jerry Chopra were also tested positive in November last year. India’s veteran badminton player Saina Nehwal tested positive for the virus at the Thailand Open in January this year. Doubles specialists Satwiksairaj Rankireddy had COVID-19 ahead of the National Sports Awards in August last year.
Badminton players who were tested positive
RMV Gurusai Dutt
Pranaav Jerry Chopra
Anirban Lahiri- Golf
Anirban Lahiri who currently plays on the Asian Tour and PGA Tour was also tested positive for COVID-19. Anirban is also looking to take part in his second Olympic event this year.