Tokyo Olympics: Surinam’s badminton player tests positive, IOC chief to meet Tokyo Governor as cases rise

FILE PHOTO: Thomas Bach, President of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) attends an interview after the decision to postpone the Tokyo 2020 because of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Lausanne, Switzerland, March 25, 2020. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse/File Photo

Tokyo Olympics: International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach and Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike set to meet due to the heavy influx of Covid-19 cases in the host city.

Recently, a coronavirus cluster at a Japanese hotel where dozens of Brazilian Olympic team members are staying has raised new concerns about infections at what the world’s top Olympics official promised on Wednesday would be “historic” Games.

Just over a week before the July 23 opening ceremony, Tokyo reported 1,149 COVID-19 cases on Wednesday, its highest daily tally since Jan. 22.

It is not clear what the IOC chief and Koike will discuss at the meeting, which comes a day after Bach met Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga.

Postponed last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Games have little public support in Japan amid fears about the spread of the virus. Several visiting athletes have tested positive on arrival and a cluster of infections has emerged at a hotel hosting Brazilian team members.

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Tokyo Olympics: Surinamese badminton player Soren Opti withdraws after testing positive for Covid-19

Surinam’s badminton ace Soren Opti has tested positive for the obligatory Covid-19 test carried out before travel. The SOC has promptly informed appropriate national and international organizations.

The part of the delegation still present in Suriname will travel today and will eventually arrive in Tokyo via the United States of America.

Tokyo Olympics: Russian women’s rugby team also in isolation

The Russian women’s rugby sevens team is in isolation after their masseur tested positive, the RIA news agency reported on Wednesday, as was part of the South African men’s rugby team after a case was detected on their inbound flight.

Tokyo entered its fourth state of emergency earlier this week amid a rebound in COVID-19 cases that pushed Games organizers to ban spectators from nearly all venues.

Bach said on Wednesday that strict coronavirus measures were in place with high vaccination rates among participants, limited mobility for athletes and support staff, spectators banned, and continuous testing.

This message has to get across. The Japanese people have to gain confidence in this,” he said.