All sporting events in the future few months are in question, of course, because of the coronavirus outbreak. According to the unofficial information, published by the website Swimming World Magazine, FINA leaders are debating a suggestion to put a three-month moratorium on all major events under its jurisdiction, including the Olympic water polo qualifications in Rotterdam and Trieste and the World League.
FINA hasn’t confirmed that information, but the International Federation of Aquatic sports took steps to protect athletes’ health and established a COVID-19 taskforce. The group will consider and assess the spread of COVID-19. It will consider the consequences of that spread for FINA events and efforts to safeguard participants both in terms of practical measures and communications.
Today, FINA published an announcement about creating the special commission:
“Since the start of the COVID-19 outbreak, FINA has been working hard to make sure our athletes, officials and fans are protected as much as possible,” said FINA President Dr. Julio C. Maglione. “All those who love Aquatics are looking forward to the competitions of Tokyo 2020. FINA is being proactive to secure the Olympic Qualifying System for our disciplines and to ensure our athletes benefit from both sporting opportunity and health protection. FINA’s long-standing focus on health means we can call on many widely-recognised experts in the medical field. We are very grateful for their time and their insights.”
The FINA taskforce will be responsible for:
– Analysing the spread of the virus
– Making a forecast of its impact on FINA events
– Recommending protective measures
– Informing FINA Member Federations on common public health strategies that will minimise spread the risk of individual infection
– Coordinating with the IOC Medical Commission
The FINA taskforce is composed of the following members: Dr. Margo Mountjoy, FINA Bureau Member and Sports Medicine Committee Liaison, Dr. Mohamed Diop, FINA Bureau Membe; Dr. Mario Fernandes, FINA Bureau Member; Prof. Cees-Rein van den Hoogenband, Sports Medicine Committee Chairman, and Prof. David Gerrard, Sports Medicine Committee Vice-Chairman
FINA continues to liaise closely with the IOC, event hosts and public health authorities. FINA encourages all event participants to continue to seek information from these reliable sources. FINA also encourages every care in adopting practical measures to safeguard health and limit the spread of COVID-19
At present, while there may be some impact on events, FINA does not anticipate changes to the overall Olympic Qualifying systems in place for its aquatic disciplines”,emphasized FINA in the end ot the statement