Positive COVID-19 Tests Block 4 Turkish Swimmers From Euros


Four Turkish women have had to scratch from the 2021 European Swimming Championships due to a positive COVID-19 test back home in Turkey before leaving for the event. Merve TuncelDeniz Ertan, Defne Tacyildiz, and Ece Tanriverdi were all scheduled to race this week in Budapest. Tanriverdi and Tacyildiz were slated to race 2 events for Turkey while Tuncel was entered in 4 and Ertan in 5:

Ece Tanriverdi Pre-Scratch Entries

  • 1500 freestyle – 16:33.71 (16th seed)
  • 800 freestyle – 8:49.77 (25th seed)

Merve Tuncel Pre-Scratch Entries

  • 1500 freestyle – 16:03.23 (5th seed)
  • 800 freestyle – 8:26.06 (6th seed)
  • 400 freestyle – 4:06.83 (7th seed)
  • 200 freestyle – 1:59.70 (24th seed)

Deniz Ertan Pre-Scratch Entries

  • 1500 freestyle – 16:19.18 (9th seed)
  • 400 freestyle – 4:11.85 (18th seed)
  • 800 freestyle – 8:32.41 (25th seed)
  • 200 IM – 2:16.20 (30th seed)
  • 200 freestyle – 2:00.68 (36th seed)

Defne Tacyildiz Pre-Scratch Entries

  • 200 butterfly – 2:09.37 (12th seed)
  • 50 butterfly – 28.86 (50th seed)

According to Turkey coach Gjon Shyti, an Italian, the group tested positive for the virus upon their return to their training base in Ankara after competing at a meet in Edirne earlier this year.

“Unfortunately they were all tested positive 18 days before the Europeans,” Shyti told SwimSwam on Friday. “And [the tests] turned negative just 3 days prior to competition. Our plan is to get back to where we were and prepare for European Juniors, Olympics and World Juniors in the best possible way.”

Racing in Edirne, Tuncel delivered a 1:59.71 to take silver in the long course 200 freestyle, a 4:07.78 for gold in the 800 free, and an 8:26.06 to win the 800 freestyle. Tanriverdi’s top results from the Edirne meet was a 16:41.99 in the 1500 freestyle to take second place. Ertan meanwhile swam to silver in the 400 freestyle with a 4:11.85 and took 2 bronze medals in the 200 free (2:00.68) and the 800 free (8:34.80).

In our first report on the quartet’s scratches from the 800 freestyle on day 4, we reported that Viktoria Gunes had also scratched from the 200 breast which took place during the same session. Gunes was back in the water, however, on day 5 and raced in the prelims of the 200 IM where she posted a 2:12.93 for 10th seed. Gunes was slightly faster during the 200 IM semi-final with a 2:12.79 but placed 11th overall which was not fast enough to move on to the final.

The group is part of a youth wave in Turkey that has seen National Records in 9 different events broken already in 2021 following National Records in 21 events in 2020.

Leave a Reply

Notify of

oldest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
2 years ago

What if athletes test positive during the Olympics?

2 years ago

Where is Emre Sakci?

Reply to  Reid
2 years ago

Not at euros i guess, probably doing tough training until he tapers for tokyo

I gotta have more cowbell (Sakci)
Reply to  Reid
2 years ago

Emre Sakci is a fun swimmer to watch!

I was asking myself the same question.