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SAI gives elite trainees summer break amid rising Covid-19 cases

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New Delhi; April 9 (IANS) Keeping in mind the safety of athletes amid rising cases of Covid-19 in several parts of the country, the Sports Authority of India (SAI) has given summer break of three weeks to trainees of National Centres of Excellence (NCOEs) across the country.

But the core group of athletes who are preparing for the upcoming international events, including Tokyo Olympics, will be allowed to stay in their respective training centres.

“The sparring partners will also be allowed to train. The athletes who have to appear in examinations will be provided all facilities,” said a release from SAI.

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As per the new Covid-19 protocols issued by SAI, all the athletes and staff who are staying in the campus will undergo weekly RT PCR test.

According to SAI, the government will arrange for the safe return of all NCOE athletes who are heading home.

“Athletes will be provided air tickets from the NCOE to the nearest airport of their hometown and those living within a 500-km radius will be given train tickets,” said the release.

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As a precautionary measure, SAI had conducted RT-PCR tests at NCOEs in Kolkata, Thiruvananthapuram, Sonepat and Lucknow. Out of 1477 tests that were conducted in the above-mentioned four centers, only 17 people tested positive which is just 1.15% of the total tests done.

SAI recently had to stop training of athletes in Bhopal’s NCOE as more than 30 athletes tested positive for Covid-19.

–IANS

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