American Gymnast in Olympic Training Camp Tests Positive for COVID-19

olympic ring
The Olympic rings float on a barge ahead of the 2020 Summer Olympics, Monday, July 19, 2021, in Tokyo. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

TOKYO (AP) — An alternate on the United States women’s gymnastics team has tested positive for COVID-19 in an Olympic training camp in Japan.

Olympic champion Simone Biles was not affected, nor were any of the other favorites to win the team gold, but another alternate was placed into isolation because of contact tracing, USA Gymnastics said Monday.

“One of the replacement athletes for the women’s artistic gymnastics team received a positive COVID test on Sunday, July 18. After reviewing the implemented COVID protocols with members of the delegation, the local government determined that the affected replacement athlete and one other replacement athlete would be subject to additional quarantine restrictions,” the USAG statement said. “Accordingly, on Monday, the Olympic athletes moved to separate lodging accommodations and a separate training facility, as originally planned, and will continue their preparation for the Games. The entire delegation continues to be vigilant and will maintain strict protocols while they are in Tokyo.”

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The positive test was the latest in a growing line of daily reports of athletes and others testing positive at the pandemic-delayed Olympics.

On Sunday, it was revealed that two South African soccer players had become the first athletes inside the Olympic Village to test positive for COVID-19. An official with the South African soccer team also tested positive, as did a fourth member of South Africa’s contingent.

The Games are set to open on Friday with a state of emergency in force in Tokyo, which means almost all venues will be without any fans as new cases rise in the capital. The women’s gymnastic team begins competing on Sunday.

The U.S. officials said the test took place when the team was training just outside Tokyo in Inzai City. Team members arrived last week for the camp to great fanfare at Narita airport.

The Tokyo Metropolitan Government on Monday reported 727 new cases in the capital. It is the 30th straight day that cases were higher than the previous week. The cases last Monday were 502.

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