Two Georgians kicked out of Olympics after sightseeing


Two Georgian judokas were kicked out of the Tokyo Olympics after leaving athlete village for sightseeing, Japanese news agency Kyoto reported reported July 31.

Tokyo organizers said both participants violated strict COVID-19 protocols.

This is the first referral of athletes to the Tokyo Olympics since the games began on July 23, Organizing Committee spokesperson Masanori Takaya said.

An official with the Georgian National Olympic Committee identified the two silver medalists Vazha Margvelashvili, 27, and Lasha Shavdatuashvili, 29, and said they ventured out of the compound to meet “one of the their good knowledge “who lives in Japan.

Lasha Shavdatuashvili competing at the Tokyo Olympics.

“When they left the village, no one stopped them at the exit. So they thought they could get out,” the official who did not want to be named told AFP news agency on July 31.

“They just wanted to get some fresh air, to relax after a hard day of competition, after a hard period of confinement,” the official said.

Tokyo 2020 organizers said on July 31 that they took disciplinary action on July 29 against at least one participant in the Olympics, without revealing how many people were involved or who they were.

Takaya, told a press briefing on July 31 that it was a “flagrant case” of breaking the rules and that violators are no longer allowed to enter Olympic facilities.

The Georgian NOC official said the two men had their accreditation revoked on July 29, but have now left Japan to return home.

Both athletes were beaten for gold medals by various Japanese judokas this week.

Athletes are tested daily while in Japan, where they live in a biosecure “bubble” environment and must leave the country 48 hours after the end of competition.

Athletes are not allowed to take public transport and can only leave their accommodation to go to the Olympic venues.

Japan faces an upsurge in coronavirus cases.

According to Kyodo, dpa and AFP reports


Naomi C. Amerson