Coronavirus Outbreak: British sprinter Desiree Henry to prioritise health over Olympics in event of continued risk from COVID-19

Henry also said she was not worried about being unable to fulfill her potential but that the Olympics postponement must have hit some athletes hard, particularly those who looked at Tokyo as their swansong

Reuters April 27, 2020 21:55:16 IST
Coronavirus Outbreak: British sprinter Desiree Henry to prioritise health over Olympics in event of continued risk from COVID-19

British sprinter Desiree Henry will prioritise her health and family’s well-being over competing at the Tokyo Olympics next year if the COVID-19 pandemic has not been brought under control.

Coronavirus Outbreak British sprinter Desiree Henry to prioritise health over Olympics in event of continued risk from COVID19

Representational image. AP Photo

The Games were pushed back by a year to July-August 2021 due to the new coronavirus and Henry, a 4x100 metres relay bronze medallist at the 2016 Rio Games, urged athletes not to risk their health, saying she wouldn’t “die for the sport”.

“We are more than just athletes and performers that want to entertain people in a crowd. We’re humans that have families and lives to think of,” Henry told Reuters.

“You have to put your health first. I want to live, I want all the other athletes to live and be healthy. If the pandemic hasn’t been sorted by 2021, I would have to put my health first, I have a family to come back to."

“I would personally take a step back, because I’m not trying to say, ‘I’m going to die for the sport’... I’m not going to do that. I really do care about my own health and my family and I would honestly encourage others to think outside of being an athlete and just remember you’re an individual where people and family love you.”

With training centres closed due to lockdown measures in the United Kingdom, Henry has been getting her designated daily exercise on a golf course in London.

The 24-year-old said the uncertainty surrounding upcoming events made it mentally tough to “train towards a goal” but she was looking forward to competing in smaller competitions throughout the year.

Henry also said she was not worried about being unable to fulfill her potential but that the Olympics postponement must have hit some athletes hard, particularly those who looked at Tokyo as their swansong.

“It’s probably the hardest for athletes that are either looking to retire, looking to start a family and their sights were set on making the Olympics one more time as the largest pinnacle of our sport,” she added.

“That must be kind of a hard moment where you have to really change everything in your life... I kind of do have age on my side. So I’m not thinking of anything too far ahead in terms of ‘oh, I can never reach my potential’.”

Click here to follow LIVE updates on coronavirus outbreak

Updated Date:

also read

Dengue cases climb in West Bengal, 840 new infections in run-up to festival
India

Dengue cases climb in West Bengal, 840 new infections in run-up to festival

Most of the cases have been reported from North 24 Parganas, Howrah, Kolkata, Hooghly, Murshidabad, South 24 Parganas, Jalpaiguri and Darjeeling districts

Scientists develop face masks that can detect viral exposure: How will it work?
Health

Scientists develop face masks that can detect viral exposure: How will it work?

The sensor used in the mask can respond to as little as 0.3 microlitres of liquid containing viral proteins, about 70 to 560 times less than the volume of liquid produced in one sneeze and much less than the volume produced by coughing or talking

COVID-19: Active Covid cases in India rise to 46,342
Health

COVID-19: Active Covid cases in India rise to 46,342

The active cases comprise 0.10 per cent of the total infections, while the national COVID-19 recovery rate increased to 98.71 per cent.