Duffy frustrated as Abu Dhabi postponed
Flora Duffy will have to wait to get her season under way after the postponement of ITU World Triathlon Abu Dhabi in an effort to reduce the spread of the Covid-19 in the United Arab Emirates.
The WTS season opener was scheduled to take place next weekend on Yas Island, Abu Dhabi, where there have been cases of Covid-19 in the past few days.
Duffy, who hopes to be a medal contender at the Olympic Games in Tokyo this summer, wrote on Instagram: “So the news is out, @wtsabudhabi is postponed due to the Coronavirus outbreak in the area.
“Thanks to the ITU, LOC and local government for making a swift and safe decision. I was really looking forward to starting the season but I guess I'll have to wait a few more weeks!
An ITU statement, released yesterday, said: “Although the Abu Dhabi authorities are working on measures so that the safety of all the athletes, coaches and officials participating in the event is the main concern, due to the new World Health Organisation recommendations and the spread of the virus, ITU and the Abu Dhabi Sports Council have jointly agreed to postpone the event.
“ITU, the local organising committee and Abu Dhabi Sports Council are looking at possible dates for relocating the event later on in March or April.”
About 300 elite athletes and more than 2,500 age-group athletes and scholars were expected to be competing.
According to latest figures, 19 people have now been infected by Covid-19 in the UAE.
Covid-19, which has more than 88,000 confirmed cases and 3,000 deaths, is also threatening the cancellation of the Tokyo Games, although Thomas Bach, the International Olympic Committee president, has said that his organisation is “fully committed” to holding the Olympics on schedule, from July 24 to August 9.