Teenage U.S. tennis star Coco Gauff tests positive for COVID-19, forced to withdraw from Olympic

Coco Gauff, 17, made the announcement Sunday; She is not the only athlete who will not be at the games due to virus restrictions.
2022 Winter Olympics
Opening ceremonies at 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing
(Xinhua/Ma Zhancheng via Getty Images)

The upcoming Olympic Games in Tokyo continue to lose athletes due to positive coronavirus tests and concerns over restrictions. On Sunday, U.S. tennis star Coco Gauff announced that she had tested positive for the virus and would be missing the games. 

"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," said the 17-year-old Gauff. "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 meant to be at the fore of a team of 12 all-star American tennis players representing the country at the games, with opening ceremonies Friday.

Grand Slam champion and Michigan native Serena Williams had previously withdrawn due to travel restrictions that would prevent her from having her 3-year-old daughter with her in Tokyo.

Several other athletes have opted to stay away from the games as well due to concerns about the effect that the Olympic "bubble" will have on their mental health, in addition to objections about the lack of spectators.

As the highly contagious Delta variant has begun to spread across Asia, anxiety about Tokyo's Olympic Games has increased dramatically. This month, organizers announced that domestic spectators would be barred from the competition events of the Games. International spectators were barred back in March.

Over the weekend, officials reported the first three positive test cases within the Olympic Village, where thousands will soon arrive. 

Since the beginning of the month, more than 30,000 tests have been conducted in and around the Olympic Village.

"This is probably the most controlled population at this point in time anywhere in the world," said Pierre Ducrey, the operations director for the Games.