Mandeep 6th men’s hockey camper to test Covid-19 positive

The 25-year-old from Jalandhar is asymptomatic and is being treated along with the other five players by doctors in Bengaluru, where the national camp is due to start on August 20 at the SAI centre.
File image of Mandeep Singh.(File)
File image of Mandeep Singh.(File)
Updated on Aug 10, 2020 11:31 PM IST
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Hindustan Times, New Delhi | By

The number of Covid-19 cases in the India men’s hockey camp in Bengaluru rose to six on Monday with forward Mandeep Singh also testing positive, after skipper Manpreet Singh, Surender Kumar, Jaskaran Singh, Varun Kumar and Krishan Pathak tested positive at the weekend on returning from home.

“Mandeep is asymptomatic. He is being administered treatment by doctors along with the other five players who have tested positive,” a Sports Authority of India (SAI) statement said. The campers are at SAI’s National Centre of Excellence in Bengaluru.

The spate of positive cases is unlikely to affect the Indian hockey team’s preparations, which resumed after the 2020 Tokyo Olympics was postponed to next year. There are no competitions at least until mid-November, giving players enough time to regain their peak in terms of fitness and game.

The Covid-19 cases were found when the 33 campers, confined to the SAI centre since March due to the lockdown and then allowed to go home in June end, began assembling ahead of the August 4 deadline.

In all 32 players have been tested. The results of 20 players have come, and those of 12 are awaited. Manipur-based Chinglensana Singh’s return to the camp has been delayed due to personal reasons, a team official said.

The camp was due to begin after a fortnight’s mandatory quarantine period, but could be delayed. “Since SAI is running the camp, it would be in the best position to answer these questions,” Hockey India (HI) high performance director David John said. SAI is expected to take a call once it gets all results of the tests being done by the Karnataka state government.

All the players who have reported at the camp are in isolation, as per quarantine protocol. Their meals are left on a chair outside their rooms. They are not allowed to step out and exercise inside their rooms. “It is absolute isolation. We haven’t even seen each other’s faces,” a player said on condition of anonymity.

India’s next tournament is the six-team Asian Champions Trophy in Dhaka, from November 17 to 27. It could be postponed or cancelled if the pandemic situation does not improve. Their next important event is the FIH Pro League in April 2021.

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    From badminton to cricket, Sandip Sikdar writes on many sporting disciplines. He has the experience of working in digital, news agency as well as print organisations. Motorsport remains his first love.

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