Athletes have started arriving in Tokyo as the Olympic games are set to get underway. While Japan works to pull off a safe Olympics during a pandemic, COVID protocols have been the focus.
The opening ceremonies of the Tokyo Olympics are set to begin Friday and it will be an unprecedented games without fans during a pandemic. According to Japanese authorities, at least four athletes who are not residents of Japan tested positive for COVID so far.
Teen tennis star Coco Gauff wrote on social media that she tested positive and will have to sit out her first Olympic games.
NBC 6 spoke to Miami native and Judo athlete Angelica Delgado, who arrived in japan on Friday. She is being hosted at a hotel in Ryugasaki, training before her big match.
She will head to the Olympic village on Wednesday and described the restrictions at the airport before she could even enter the country.
“We finally got to get off the plane and they personally escorted us to get tested immediately. We had to stand in line in chairs and stuff with our masks on and sanitizing constantly,” she said. “They checked all our paperwork and if everything checked out we did the spit test.”
Delgado said it was about a five-hour process and there was no pomp and circumstance as she arrived. She said it’s a vastly different experience based on her last Olympics in 2016.
“Here, everything is so much more controlled. I’m in a bubble in the hotel right now – like, I see the Family Mart or 7-11 across the street and I’m saying ‘Can I just run across the street and get an onigiri rice balls?’ He’s like no and I’m like okay,” she said.
Outside of all the distractions, Delgado is focused on what she must do mentally and physically before her first match on July 25th.