Canadian field hockey team returns from South Africa

Canada’s junior women’s field hockey team are due to return home Thursday after being stranded in South Africa due to the new COVID-19 variant. The team took off from Johannesburg on Wednesday and was on a flight through Frankfurt, Germany.

Canada’s junior women’s field hockey team are due to return home Thursday after being stranded in South Africa due to the new COVID-19 variant.

The team took off from Johannesburg on Wednesday and was on a flight through Frankfurt, Germany.

The women were in Potchestroom, about 120 kilometers southwest of Johannesburg, for the Junior World Cup, December 5-17, but the event was canceled due to travel restrictions around the Omicron variant, leaving Canadians without immediate return flights.

Field Hockey Canada has received an exemption from COVID-19 testing for third countries from the federal government, which applies to returning Canadians.

Players and staff have been tested in South Africa and will be tested immediately upon arrival in Canada.

The team arrived in South Africa on November 24 for the World Cup, clinching their spot by winning the Pan American Championships last summer in Chile.

“Despite the heartbreaking news of the postponement of the Junior World Cup, athletes continued to train on the North West University preparation field,” Field Hockey Canada said in a statement. “Many of the team are post-secondary students and have had time to study and rest. We are extremely proud and grateful for the way our athletes and staff handled such a difficult situation. “Thank you to the government support, to our staff, parents and the community who have come together in what has been a difficult time towards this positive outcome. We look forward to seeing our national junior team back at home. “

This report by The Canadian Press was first published on December 8, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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