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Estonian ski team hit by COVID at Östersund World Cup

Aivar Rehemaa. Photo is illustrative.
Aivar Rehemaa. Photo is illustrative. Source: ERR

After previously hitting Estonian biathletes earlier this season, the majority of the Estonian cross-country ski team at the Östersund World Cup in Sweden this weekend got COVID-19.

Following Saturday's sprint event, several athletes complained of physical weakness, after which three of the four men that had competed tested positive for COVID. Skier Alvar Johannes Alev as well as half of the ski team's support team members tested positive as well.

Marko Kilp, Martin Himma, Karl Sebastian Dremljuga and Kaarel Kasper Kõrge were the four Estonians to compete on Saturday.

According to coach Aivar Rehemaa, the Estonian ski team is currently taking things one day at a time, and taking a wait-and-see approach in terms of further plans.

"All previous days have been fine, and even this morning [no one] suspected that something is amiss; there weren't any symptoms," Rehemaa said according to a press release.

"The sick men will be heading home for treatment as soon as possible, and we hope they'll recover quickly," he continued. "The season is still young, and the goal is to minimize damage."

He noted that skiers Keidy and Kaidi Kaasik, who are currently still well, are staying at a separate hotel from both the men and the support team, and expressed hope that they'll escape infection with the virus and can compete in Trondheim next week.

"Regarding the support team, currently both I and Eero Bergman have gotten COVID," Rehemaa acknowledged. "The others are currently still fine. We certainly hope to be out with our team at Tour de Ski kicking off at the end of the year."

Keidy and Kaidy Kaasik are slated to compete in Östersund on Sunday.

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Editor: Aili Vahtla

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