Athletes test positive for COVID-19 in Tokyo ahead of Olympic Games Opening Ceremony

Three athletes have tested positive for coronavirus, days before the Olympic Games are set to begin in Tokyo.

The Games’ organising committee reported 10 new COVID-19 cases relating to the Olympics, all of which are from overseas teams.

Three of the cases were reported in athletes, two of which are in the athlete’s village.

It comes after the first COVID-19 case to be recorded in the athlete’s village was confirmed on Saturday.

The nationalities of the confirmed cases are unknown.

A contingent of more than 100 Australian athletes touched down in Tokyo on Saturday, after flying out from Cairns.

The Australian Olympic athletics team was put into lockdown for several hours over the weekend because of a staff member’s inconclusive COVID-19 test.

But tests later on Sunday confirmed the person is not infected and the team’s Tokyo preparations in Cairns are going ahead as planned.

Australian Olympic team chef de mission Ian Chesterman revealed on Sunday that the person had tested negative in Melbourne before travelling on Thursday to join the athletics team at its Cairns training camp.

A further test in Cairns produced the inconclusive result, prompting all members of the athletics team to be confined to their rooms for several hours until Saturday evening.

A track meeting planned for Sunday is now going ahead.

“The subsequent inconclusive test on entering the athletics camp triggered two further, more extensive tests to confirm the staff member’s negative status,” Chesterman said.

“Athletics Australia has been working closely with Queensland Health and the staff member has been placed in quarantine, pending a final confirmation of their negative status expected later today.”

The first group from the Cairns athletics camp will fly to Tokyo on July 26.

The bulk of the Australian athletics team is at a pre-departure training camp in Cairns, with other members of the squad in Europe and Sydney.

Two days ago, tennis star Alex de Minaur had to pull out of the Games after testing positive to coronavirus.

The latest cases in Tokyo are a blow to the local organisers and the International Olympic Committee, who have insisted the Games will not become a super-spreader event.

The Tokyo organisers confirmed that a visitor from abroad working for the Olympics had tested positive in a routine check on Friday. The person’s nationality was not revealed due to privacy concerns.

The other cases included two members of the media, seven contractors and five Games personnel.

The case at the athletes’ village, a 44-hectare site built on Tokyo’s waterfront, is particularly worrying as the majority of the 11,000 competitors will be staying there.