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The obscured perception on COVID mitigation and vaccines in sports continues to weigh on those that aren’t as keen on being medical experts over professional athletes.
Joining a roster of athletes voicing their experience(s) with ongoing vaccine debates is British tennis player Johanna Konta — who has reflected on being fully vaccinated and having to miss out on tournaments as a result of COVID.
Konta was forced to drop out of Wimbledon and the Tokyo Olympic Games due to contact tracing and testing positive herself. In an interview with Reuters, Konta acknowledged the need to traipse around the topic given the pro-vaccine crowd that has taken on a political fervor — despite Konta some genuine realizations after getting vaccinated.
“This is a tricky thing to talk about because it’s a very inflammatory subject and there’s no real right answer,” admitted Konta, sounding hesitant on increased vaccine mandates given their lack of promise for athletes hoping to avoid missing time in their respective sport.
She added, “I don’t want to talk about it because I wouldn’t be able to get my point across without it being a case for argument.”
The conversation on COVID in the U.S. and across the globe has promoted vaccines as a way to mitigate the virus’ spread. As data on infection rates accrues since the start of the pandemic, the number of breakthrough cases and continuous infection among the vaccinated crowds has not challenged the efficacy of the vaccine but its promotion of leading to zero spread of the virus.
As highlighted in an Israeli study looking at infections among vaccinated, unvaccinated and people with COVID antibodies, merit for long-term protection on behalf of antibodies continues to be a promising direction but struggles to find supporters based on fears of supposed anti-vaxx rhetoric.
Konta recently pulled out of the first round of the U.S. Open due to a thigh injury.
Follow along on Twitter: @AlejandroAveela