Coronavirus wrap: Three positive tests in Championship while PGA Tour fears grow

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Three individuals from two Sky Bet Championship clubs have tested positive in the latest round of coronavirus testing while there are growing fears of an outbreak afflicting golf’s PGA Tour.

Tests were carried out on 2,858 players and club staff from the 24 teams in the second tier, with the division resuming last weekend.

An EFL statement read: “Those players or club staff who have tested positive will now self-isolate in line with the guidelines provided by the EFL and only those who have tested negative will be permitted to enter training ground facilities.”

Sky Bet Championship
Three more individuals associated with Championship clubs have tested positive (Barrington Coombs/PA Archive)

Former US Open champion Graeme McDowell has withdrawn from this week’s Travelers Championship in Connecticut after his caddie tested positive for coronavirus.

Ken Comboy returned a positive test on Tuesday, prompting McDowell, who tested negative for the virus earlier this week, to pull out.

Golf – The Saab Wales Open 2011 – Round Two – The Celtic Manor Resort
Graeme McDowell’s caddie Ken Comboy has tested positive for coronavirus (David Davies/PA)

McDowell told Golfweek: “For the protection of the field, and for my own physical and mental well-being, I’m going to take a test tomorrow morning then jump on a private plane.

“I’m going to get myself out of here, home to Florida and decide whether I need to quarantine myself from my family.”

England have received a boost with the news none of their players have tested positive for coronavirus in the last three weeks ahead of next month’s behind-closed-doors Test series against the West Indies.

Blanket negatives extended to support staff, match officials and England and Wales Cricket Board, venue and hotel personnel in the 702 tests conducted from June 3-23 at the ‘bio-secure’ venues of the Ageas Bowl and Old Trafford.

Some people were tested multiple times but the figure announced by the ECB on Wednesday afternoon does not extend to Jofra Archer’s second examination, the result of which will be known on Thursday.

British Swimming and the LTA have become the latest domestic sports governing bodies to criticise the government over the latest relaxation of lockdown restrictions.

The government announced on Tuesday that while pubs, hotels and hairdressers may reopen on July 4, indoor sports like swimming, badminton and gymnastics must wait.

British Swimming chief executive Jack Buckner said: “I agree fully with the other sports on this really poor decision. So much great work has gone on to prepare for pools and indoor sports facilities to reopen.

“We can be trusted in sport to respect the rules and do a great job for the nation’s health and fitness.”

While outdoor tennis was one of the first sports allowed to be played, it is still not allowed indoors.

An LTA spokesperson said: “We’ve seen a lot of people take advantage of the opportunity to play tennis outdoors over the past few weeks, so it is disappointing that indoor courts will not be able to open yet, and we will continue to make the case to Government for them to open as soon as possible.’

Surrey have announced plans to host a two-day friendly against Middlesex behind closed doors at the Kia Oval towards the end of next month, raising hopes that a truncated County Championship campaign could take place this summer.

The match is set to take place on July 26-27 and Surrey hope the game is a precursor to “returning to competitive action the following weekend”.

Sri Lanka have announced their Test series against Bangladesh has been postponed. The Bangladesh Cricket Board informed its Sri Lankan counterparts that “a conducive environment” has not been found to prepare its players for the tour, which was due to start next month.

The New York City and Berlin marathons have also been cancelled.

The New York race, which had been due to take place on November 1, has been called off due, organisers said, “to coronavirus-related health and safety concerns for runners, spectators, volunteers, staff, and the many partners and communities that support the event”.

The Berlin event had been scheduled for the end of September, but organisers said in a statement on Wednesday: “Fun, joy, health and success are attributes that characterise the BMW Berlin Marathon, but we are not able to guarantee all of this at the moment. Your health, as well as all of our health, is our first priority.”

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