Croatia Snowboarder Lea Jugovac Misses Olympic Debut Due to Anti-Covid Measures in Beijing

Daniela Rogulj

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Sunday did not see any performances by Croatia representatives at the Winter Olympics in Beijing, but there is no lack of excitement in the Croatia camp. In addition to daily testing and training, the day was marked by a protest letter from the Croatian Olympic Committee (COC) to the Organizing Committee of the Beijing Games against the unacceptable ant-covid procedures, which left Croatia snowboarder Lea Jugovac without her Olympic debut.

The contents of the letter were also presented to the International Olympic Committee (IOC). It was signed by the heads of the COC Mission at the Beijing Winter Olympics, Damir Šegota and Petra Nosso. Along with the letter, an appendix was sent in the form of a report by the coach of the Croatian snowboarder, Darko Bilen.

The protest letter can be read in its entirety below:

Dear Sirs/Madam,

We are writing this letter to bring your attention to the sad incident that happened yesterday evening and night to our athlete during and after the Opening ceremony of the Beijing Winter Olympic Games.

The clumsy procedure that dictated that athletes have to be tested 24 hours before the Opening ceremony, to ensure that everyone present is uninfected, obviously have been fruitless because the unacceptable procedure that followed prevented our athlete from attending the Opening ceremony, as well as today’s competition.

Just before the delegation entered the stadium, she was removed from the parade, which shocked her and the coach. Supposedly she was positive? After re-testing in Beijing, the athlete was returned to the accommodation only at 3 am, and the negative test result came after 4 am, which resulted in the decision not to perform the next day at 10 am.

Due to all the above, we believe that BOCOG should apologize to the athlete who was not only prevented from participating in the Opening ceremony, but also from performing at the Games. The procedures performed by BOCOG were unacceptable, the athlete was mentally struck by it all, the procedure itself and the inhumane conditions in which she found herself last night denied her performance at the Games. A detailed description of the whole incident can be found in the attachment.

Should you require any further clarification, please do not hesitate to contact us.

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