Olympic organizers confirm 72 COVID-19 cases among Games-related personnel entering China from Jan. 4-22
Canucks place goalie Spencer Martin, 2 assistant coaches in COVID protocol
The latest sports news:
- Beijing organizers confirm 72 COVID-19 cases among 2,586 Games-related personnel
- Canucks place goalie Martin, 2 assistant coaches in COVID protocol
- OHL suspends 2 Sunday games due to COVID issues
Beijing Olympic organizers said on Sunday they had confirmed 72 cases of COVID-19 among 2,586 Games-related personnel entering China from Jan. 4 to Jan. 22, with no cases among 171 athletes and team officials arriving in that period.
Final preparations are taking place for the Winter Games amid a global surge in cases of the highly infectious Omicron coronavirus variant. The Games are set to take place from Feb. 4 to Feb. 20 inside a "closed loop" bubble that separates all event personnel from the public.
Of the confirmed cases, 39 were found in testing at the airport and 33 inside the loop, organizers said. Participants in the bubble are subject to daily testing, with 336,421 PCR tests administered from Jan. 4 to Jan. 22.
Numbers consistent with Tokyo Games
Brian McCloskey, chair of the Beijing 2022 medical expert panel, said that the numbers were consistent with those at last summer's Tokyo Games and in line with expectations.
"We never set a target of zero cases in the closed loop," he told an online media briefing on Sunday.
All Games participants need two negative PCR test results within 96 hours of their departure to China, and most are traveling on specially arranged charter flights.
Last week, organizers said that tickets for the Olympics would not be sold to the general public due to COVID-19, and would instead be distributed to groups of people who would be required to undertake strict prevention measures before, during and after attending events.
China has managed to contain domestic outbreaks of COVID-19 since it first emerged in the central city of Wuhan, and has all but shut its borders to international arrivals.
On Sunday, Beijing's city government introduced further measures to contain COVID-19 after finding nine locally transmitted cases the previous day.
Canucks place Martin, 2 assistant coaches in protocol
The Vancouver Canucks are down two more goalies due to COVID-19.
Head coach Bruce Boudreau says Spencer Martin has been placed in the NHL's COVID-19 protocol and Arturs Silovs of the American Hockey League's Abbotsford Canucks has tested positive for the virus.
Martin made his debut for Vancouver on Friday, backstopping the Canucks (18-18-4) to a 2-1 shootout loss to the Florida Panthers, the NHL's top scoring team.
Rylan Toth of the University of B.C. Thunderbirds will act as the emergency backup goalie.
Assistant coaches Scott Walker and Kyle Gustafson have also been added to the protocol, joining Canucks forwards Bo Horvat, Conor Garland and J.T. Miller.
OHL postpones 2 games Sunday due to COVID issues
The Ontario Hockey League postponed two games from its Sunday schedule..
The Windsor Spitfires-Kitchener Rangers game was postponed due to COVID—19 protocols affecting the Spitfires. And the Hamilton Bulldogs-Barrie Colts contest was postponed due to a non-COVID related illness affecting the Bulldogs.
The league said both games will be played at a later date.
With files from The Canadian Press