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Tennis Star Coco Gauff Tests Positive For Covid-19—Becoming Latest Athlete Forced Out Of Tokyo Olympics

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Teenage tennis star Coco Gauff announced Sunday afternoon she has tested positive for Covid-19 and will not be able to compete in the Tokyo Olympics as a result, making her the latest athlete barred from the major sporting competition due to the virus just five days before the opening ceremony.

Key Facts

The 17-year-old, who was set to represent Team USA at the games, announced the news in a tweet Sunday afternoon.

“I hope there will be many more chances for me to make this come true in the future,” said Gauff, who sits at No. 25 in the Women’s Tennis Association global rankings, wishing Team USA the “best of luck” during the games, which are set to kick off Friday.

It wasn’t immediately clear whether Gauff was already in Tokyo’s Olympic Village or whether she was yet vaccinated, but according to the New York Times, she still hadn’t been as of June 7. 

Gauff was selected for Team USA earlier this month after making it to the quarter-finals at the French Open, becoming the youngest American tennis player set to compete at the Summer Olympics in nearly 30 years.

A representative for the International Olympic Committee, which organizes the biannual games, did not immediately respond to a Forbes request for comment.

Crucial Quote 

“I am so disappointed to share the news that I have tested positive for Covid and won’t be able to play in the Olympic Games in Tokyo,” Gauff tweeted Sunday. “It has always been a dream of mine to represent the USA at the Olympics.”

 

Key Background

Earlier Sunday, the IOC announced two athletes staying in the Olympic Village in Tokyo tested positive for Covid-19, marking the first instances of athlete infection within the complex. Though there will be no spectators at the Olympics, more than 10,000 athletes are expected to flock to the area for Friday’s opening ceremony.  Meanwhile, new cases in Tokyo have surged to a six-month high, as a majority of Japan’s population remains unvaccinated. At least 55 people associated with the games have tested positive thus far.

Further Reading

Tokyo Olympics Troubles: First Athletes Test Positive Inside Olympic Village (Forbes)



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