Latvian ice hockey player tests Covid-positive before Finland clash

Latvian national ice hockey team player Mārtiņš Karsums will not take part in the Beijing Olympic Games match against the Finnish national team on Friday due to a positive Covid-19 test. The rest of the Latvian squad have become contact persons, reports Latvian Television from Beijing.

The hockey team had a morning training session on Friday, but Mārtiņš Karsums could not take part in it - he has a positive Covid-19 test and due to that he will not be able to participate in the game against the Finnish national team.

"Suddenly we all have to walk around in masks. If in the past we could at least be without a mask in the locker room, now everyone has masks in the locker room. The situation is changing every day. It was planned that Karsums will play today," said Harijs Vītoliņš, the head coach of the hockey team. 

According to LTV sports reporter Dāvids Ernštreits, the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) takes this case very seriously and is worried that it could affect the entire tournament. The hockey players arrived in Beijing nine days ago and reported several cases of Covid infection, but the organizers of the tournament hoped that the protocols in place would mean athletes would not face new cases of Covid-19.

However, the match against Finland is going ahead as planned.

The Latvian national team started playing in the Beijing Olympics on Thursday, losing to the Swedish national team 2:3. The Beijing Olympics take place from February 4 to 20. Latvia is represented in the Olympics by 57 athletes in 11 sports.

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