Deccan Chronicle

China's virus-hit Olympic training reduced to disinfection chambers, isolated eating

Deccan Chronicle | DC Correspondent

Published on: March 11, 2020 | Updated on: March 11, 2020

Isolation has increased our focus on preparation, says two-time world shot put champion Gong Lijiao

China's two-time world shot put champion Gong Lijiao. AFP Photo

China's two-time world shot put champion Gong Lijiao. AFP Photo

Beijing: Chinese athletes gunning for glory at the Tokyo Olympics are training behind closed doors, have their temperatures checked three times a day and cannot even share dining tables as part of strict measures against the coronavirus.

The outbreak has led to fears this summer's Games could be postponed but the International Olympic Committee insists that will not be the case and Chinese competitors are ploughing on with their build-up.

The Chinese Athletic Association (CAA) is taking no chances, however, severely restricting access in and out of training camps at home and abroad.


The coronavirus emerged in the central Chinese city of Wuhan in December but has since infected and killed thousands of people worldwide.

Gong Lijiao, the reigning two-time world champion in women's shot put, said that preparing away from friends and family only made her and her team-mates more focused.

"We want to fight bravely at the Olympic Games, win medals and inspire Chinese people with the spirit of sport," said Gong, who won bronze at the 2008 Beijing Olympics and silver at London 2012, in comments released by the CAA.


As part of measures put in place in late January to ward off the coronavirus, the CAA says training camps, including equipment, living quarters and canteens, are disinfected regularly.

At their Beijing base Gong and others must also pass through a disinfection chamber and there are limits to how many people can gather together.

They are also banned from sharing a table while eating.

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