Coco Gauff tests positive for the virus, another blow for the Games


By Jennifer Jett and Alexandra E. Petri


Teenage American tennis star Coco Gauff announced Sunday on Twitter that she had tested positive for the coronavirus and would not be competing in the Tokyo Olympics. Her withdrawal was the latest sign that the pandemic would disrupt the Games with the opening ceremony just days away and the virus continuing to infect athletes and others involved.


“I am so disappointed to share the news that I have tested positive for COVID and won’t be able to play in the Olympic Games in Tokyo,” wrote Gauff, 17. “It has always been a dream of mine to represent the USA at the Olympics, and I hope there will be many more chances for me to make this come true in the future.”


Gauff was supposed to lead an American team of 12 players. Serena Williams, another American star, had already said she would not be at the Games, because of travel restrictions that would prevent her from traveling with her 3-year-old daughter.


It is unclear whether Gauff was vaccinated, but her busy tour schedule would have made getting jabbed a challenge. COVID vaccines were approved for people ages 16 and older in December in the European Union and the United States. In Britain, they are approved only for people ages 18 and older.