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Strict health protocols to be enforced in Clark qualifiers

Strict health protocols to be enforced in Clark qualifiers

MANILA, Philippines — Foreign teams playing in the 2021 Fiba Asia Cup Qualifiers in Clark, Pampanga would be subjected to five swab tests at most following the sport’s governing body in regulating the spread of COVID-19 during the competition.

Butch Antonio, Samahang Basketbol ng Pilpiinas executive director, said the national teams of South Korea, Indonesia, Thailand, Chinese-Taipei, Japan, and China were subjected to RT-PCR testing three times in their respective countries before flying to the Philippines.

Those teams, along with the Philippines, will then be tested once more upon arrival at Quest Hotel which would serve as the competition’s official lodging for the duration of the tournament in the Philippines.

“Testing is done regularly to make sure the athletes are safe and should they require we can administer another test at the end of the tournament,” said Antonio in a virtual press conference Sunday. “So there can be five tests.”

Teams have started to arrive at Quest with South Korea and the Philippines already in the hotel with some of the teams arriving Sunday and Monday.

In the event that an individual tests positive for COVID-19, Antonio said that the person will be isolated in his hotel room.

Each player was given his own room for the tournament to curb the spread of the virus.

“They’ll remain isolated in their own room and there are protocols and guidelines that have been set through the IATF (Inter-Agency Task Force for Emerging Infectious Diseases) and Fiba,” said Antonio.

“What will happen is we’ll give another round of tests for the player or that individual.”

The Philippines holds a 3-0 record in Group A and will play South Korea twice and Indonesia once in Clark.

The top two teams of each group will qualify for the Fiba Asia Cup.

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