Turkey: Boxing Federation lays into IOC over Covid-19 contamination of two athletes

Turkey’s Boxing Federation has slammed the International Olympic Committee (IOC) after two of its athletes and head coach contracted Covid-19 during qualifying bouts for the 2020 Games in London.

Athletes, Serhat Güler and trainer Seyfullah Dumlupınar, of Turkish boxing team were infected by the disease during the European qualifying tournament, Daily Sabah reports citing the federation’s website.

The Turkish team took part in the tournament called Boxing Road to Tokyo European scheduled to run from March 14 to 24 and organized by the IOC Boxing Task Force (BTF).

The Turkish Boxing Federation President in a statement blasted the BTF for allowing the event despite threats of contamination.

“While the world was taking extreme measures to deal with the virus, I am baffled that an IOC taskforce and the British government allowed the tournament to start even though many of us had concerns and almost every other sport had shut down,” Eyüp Gözgeç was quoted as saying in the Guardian.

Gözgeç wrote to other federations about the contamination upon the return of the team.

“Unfortunately, two of our athletes and our Turkish head coach have tested positive for COVID-19, caused by a novel coronavirus, after returning to Turkey from London.

“All of them are in treatment now and thankfully they are in good condition. This is the disastrous result of the irresponsibility of the IOC taskforce.

“This virus has been around since December 2019. Therefore, it is inevitable to ask why the European qualification event was not postponed before it took place?

“They did not consider anyone’s health, which led them to organize this horrible event.”

Turkey as of Wednesday reported 59 death caused by the disease and 2,433 confirmed cases.

The BTF is a statement has suspended the qualifiers noting that safeguarding the well-being of the athletes, officials and all other participants is a top priority.

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