The Portuguese Morais waited until the last minute before giving up, Angelo Bonomelli was unable to arrive in time: “An opportunity of a lifetime was wasted, there was negligence”
A positivity to Covid declared late cost the participation in the Games by Angelo Bonomelli. The 30-year-old Italian, who was a reserve, missed his Olympic surfing debut because Portuguese Frederico Morais waited until the last minute to report his positivity, despite the long list of rules and restrictions set for the Tokyo Games. Too late for Bonomelli to reach Tokyo in time.
Bonomelli in an interview with the Associated Press said that the Portuguese National Olympic Committee should have first reported positivity to a virus that has already killed more than 4 million people in one of the worst global health crises in modern history. “I just think it’s not fair for me to waste a lifetime opportunity, there has been negligence,” Bonomelli said in a message. Morais defended himself by saying he thought he would come back negative in time after completing a 10-day isolation, asymptomatic and vaccinated. The Japanese government requires proof of a negative Covid test within 72 hours of arriving in the country.
In the Athlete and Officials Playbook, the 70-page document published by the IOC and the Tokyo organizers in which all the health rules and the protocol that the more than 11,000 Olympians must follow are also written, positives are asked to “immediately inform the Covid manager of their country “. Morais was officially withdrawn from the competition on Saturday morning, less than 24 hours before the start of the first day of competition and the final deadline to confirm a reservation. The officials of the international federation immediately offered Italy the job: too late to organize a buffer in Rome and get Bonomelli (who lives in Costa Rica) to arrive on time. Normally the reserve travels together with the team, but in this emergency phase it did not happen: “It’s amazing how unfair it is,” said Bonomelli, who was the first reserve after 20 at the start in the men’s tournament.
July 27 – 08:34
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