Unnamed Team England athlete tests positive for coronavirus at Birmingham 2022

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Team England Chef de Mission Mark England has confirmed an athlete has been sent home from the Commonwealth Games after testing positive for coronavirus.

The athlete, who has not been named due to medical confidentiality, failed the test upon arrival in Birmingham and is currently asymptomatic.

A second athlete who initially returned a positive test for the virus has subsequently been cleared to compete in the Games after further testing.

Birmingham 2022 starts on Thursday
Birmingham 2022 starts on Thursday (Mike Egerton/PA)

England said he hoped the affected athlete – who had the choice to go home or enter an isolation facility – will still have time to return a negative sample and return to Birmingham in time for their event.

“The athlete has gone home and is being tested through the usual protocols until they attain the required safety values,” said England.

“With the levels they are showing we are pretty confident they will be back in play again.”

Team GB avoided any positive ‘in-country’ tests at both the Tokyo Games – for which England was also Chef de Mission – and the Beijing Winter Olympics earlier this year.

However England admitted that it was “inevitable” that there would be positive tests among the hundreds of Team England members passing through the process because “the world is in a different place” with the virus.

The Birmingham organising committee is not issuing official numbers of positive Covid cases. But it understood that one Northern Ireland athlete has already withdrawn from the Games due to coronavirus, while New Zealand confirmed one of their athletes is currently in isolation.

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