Tokyo Olympics: Sam Kendricks OUT of Games after testing positive for Covid-19


Sam Kendricks OUT of the Olympics after testing positive for Covid-19 as US pole vaulter and 2016 bronze medallist becomes the Games’ most high-profile casualty in Tokyo so far

World champion pole vaulter Sam Kendricks is out of the Olympics after testing positive for Covid.

The 28-year-old, who was expected to compete for gold, becomes the most high-profile casualty so far.

Kendricks won bronze in Rio and is the reigning world champion. He was set to go head to head with Sweden’s Mondo Dulantis, the world record holder, on Tuesday (August 3) in an eagerly-awaited contest.

However, the US Olympic and Paralympic Committee confirmed his exit in a statement released this morning.

It read: ‘The health and safety of our athletes, coaches and staff is our top priority. We are saddened to confirm that Sam Kendricks tested positive for COVID-19 and will not compete in the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. 

‘In alignment with local rules and protocols, he has been transferred to a hotel to be placed in isolation and is being supported by the USATF and USOPC staff. Sam is an incredible and accomplished member of Team USA and his presence will be missed. Out of respect for his privacy, we cannot provide more information at this time.’

US pole vaulter Sam Kendricks will not be competing at Tokyo due to a positive Covid test

US pole vaulter Sam Kendricks will not be competing at Tokyo due to a positive Covid test

Kendricks’ father and longtime coach, Scott Kendricks, wrote in a since-deleted Instagram post that his son ‘feels fine and has no symptoms’.

Kendricks is the third Team USA athlete to be ruled out thanks to Covid-19. Beach volleyball player Taylor Crabb tested positive following his arrival in Japan while gymnast Kara Eaker also tested positive while in-country.

There have now been 193 cases linked with the Games since July 1.

Australian athletes forced into isolation as a result of Kendricks’ test

By Charlie Coe

Australia’s athletics team have been forced into self-isolation and ordered to get tested for Covid-19 after being exposed to a positive case in the Olympic village.

All 63 athletes on the Australian team have been confined to their hotel rooms until their test results are received after US pole vaulter Sam Kendricks tested positive to the virus.   

Pole vaulter Kurtis Marschall is believed to be the only member of the Australian team classed as a close contact of Kendricks, The Herald Sun reported.

All 63 members of the Australian Olympic athletics team have been forced into self-isolation after US pole vaulter Kendricks (left) tested positive to Covid-19

All 63 members of the Australian Olympic athletics team have been forced into self-isolation after US pole vaulter Kendricks (left) tested positive to Covid-19

Australian pole vaulter Kurtis Marschall is believed to be the only member of the Australian team classed as a close contact of the US athlete

Australian pole vaulter Kurtis Marschall is believed to be the only member of the Australian team classed as a close contact of the US athlete

Marschall was reportedly training with Kendricks before being rushed into self-isolation. 

The US Olympic and Paralympic Committee said Kendricks – a two-time pole vault world champion – had been transferred into self-isolation and would withdraw from the games.

‘We are saddened to confirm that Sam Kendricks tested positive for Covid-19 and will not compete in the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020,’ a USOPC spokesman said.

‘In alignment with local rules and protocols, he has been transferred to a hotel to be placed in isolation and is being supported by the USATF and USOPC staff.’ 

Kendricks won the bronze medal at the 2016 Olympics and took gold at the last two world championships. He holds the American record at 6.06 meters.

The opening heats of the pole vault event is due to start at 10am on Saturday. 

The positive case comes a day after Italian rower Bruno Rosetti missed out on racing in the men’s coxless four on Wednesday after testing positive to the virus.

The 33-year-old’s sample was taken on Tuesday and confirmed positive on Wednesday morning, with Rosetti then moved into in isolation.  

Athletes and staff in Tokyo for the July 23-August 8 games are subject to a strict testing regime to identity and isolate positive cases in the Olympic village. 

The Japanese capital city is in a state of emergency with coronavirus infections at a record high.  

Tokyo recorded 3,177 new Covid-19 cases on Wednesday, a second straight daily record high. 

Nationwide new cases hit 9,570, the health ministry said, topping 9,500 for the first time. 

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