Tennis player de Minaur has COVID-19, out of Tokyo Olympics

Jul 15, 2021, 6:53 AM | Updated: 9:03 pm

TOKYO (AP) — Australian tennis player Alex de Minaur has tested positive for COVID-19 and has withdrawn from the Tokyo Olympics.

The Australian Olympic team’s chef de mission Ian Chesterman told media in Tokyo on Friday that de Minaur was “shattered” over the news.

“We are very disappointed for Alex,” Chesterman said. “It has been his dream to represent Australia at the Olympic Games since he was a child.” De Minaur, Australia’s top-ranked men’s player at No. 17, was scheduled to play both singles and doubles. It was unclear if de Minaur’s doubles partner John Pearce would maintain his spot on the team.

“Alex undertook both the 96-hour and 72-hour PCR test as required by the Japanese authorities and unfortunately both returned a positive result,” the Australian Olympic Committee said in a statement from Sydney. “He was due to fly to Tokyo on July 18 from his base in Spain.

Alex has not been in contact with other members of the Australian Olympic team since returning a negative test on July 5th.”

Chesterman said de Minaur returned at negative test at Wimbledon.

“We do know that no other tennis players have had physical contact with Alex since he left Wimbledon,” Chesterman said. “All other Australian players have tested negative.”

He said while the situation was unfortunate, it was testament to the “bubble” system working effectively.

“We need to protect this bubble and Alex has been caught up in that system, but it does show that the system is working and while we will miss Alex, he understands the reasons why he cannot be with us.”

De Minaur lost to American Sebastian Korda in the first round at Wimbledon. De Minaur has five career ATP titles and a career-high ranking of 15.

Nick Kyrgios had earlier withdrawn from the Australian team, citing health concerns and the heavy restrictions on participants at the Olympics.

The Australian women’s tennis team will be led by top-ranked Ash Barty, who is coming off a title win at Wimbledon.

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